Most Popular British Documentary Movement Movies and TV Shows

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1. Fires Were Started (1943)

63 min | Drama, War

6.5
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A tale of firefighters in London during the Blitz.

Director: Humphrey Jennings | Stars: Philip Dickson, George Gravett, Fred Griffiths, Johnny Houghton

Votes: 924

2. Target for Tonight (1941)

Approved | 48 min | Documentary, Drama, War

6.5
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The planning and implementation of an RAF night raid on Germany in World War II, concentrating on a low level mission by a Wellington bomber on an oil storage facility by the Rhine.

Director: Harry Watt

Votes: 249

3. Night Mail (1936)

Approved | 25 min | Short, Documentary

6.7
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Shows the special train on which mail is sorted, dropped and collected on the run, and delivered in Scotland overnight.

Directors: Harry Watt, Basil Wright | Stars: Arthur Clark, John Grierson, Stuart Legg, Robert Rae

Votes: 1,167

4. Listen to Britain (1942)

Not Rated | 20 min | Documentary, Short

6.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A depiction of life in wartime England during the Second World War. Director Humphrey Jennings visits many aspects of civilian life and of the turmoil and privation caused by the war, all without narration.

Directors: Humphrey Jennings, Stewart McAllister | Stars: Leonard Brockington, Joseph Macleod, Bud Flanagan, Chesney Allen

Votes: 1,463

5. Drifters (1929)

49 min | Documentary

6.6
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A silent documentary film by John Grierson telling the story of Britain's North Sea herring fishery.

Director: John Grierson

Votes: 307

6. A Diary for Timothy (1945)

40 min | Short, Documentary

7.0
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This brief documentary-style film presents the status of Great Britain near the end of the Second World War by means of a visual diary for a baby boy born in September, 1944. Narration ... See full summary »

Director: Humphrey Jennings | Stars: Michael Redgrave, Myra Hess, John Gielgud, Frederick Allen

Votes: 639

7. London Can Take It! (1940)

Approved | 9 min | Documentary, War, Short

7.0
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A tribute to the courage and resiliency of Britons during the darkest days of the London Blitz.

Directors: Humphrey Jennings, Harry Watt | Stars: Quentin Reynolds, King George VI, Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother

Votes: 548

8. Words for Battle (1941)

8 min | Documentary, Short, War

6.5
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Poetry by Rudyard Kipling, John Milton, and William Blake, and excerpts from speeches by Abraham Lincoln and Winston Churchill, all read by Laurence Olivier, illuminate documentary footage ... See full summary »

Director: Humphrey Jennings | Stars: Laurence Olivier, Winston Churchill, Joseph Goebbels, Adolf Hitler

Votes: 209

9. The Silent Village (1943)

36 min | Documentary, Drama, Short

7.0
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The true story of the massacre of a small Czech village by the Nazis is retold as if it happened in Wales.

Director: Humphrey Jennings | Stars: Villagers of Cwmgiedd, Arwel Michael

Votes: 143

10. Housing Problems (1935)

16 min | Short, Documentary

6.3
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Slum conditions, slum clearance, bright new public housing.

Directors: Edgar Anstey, Arthur Elton | Stars: Mr. Norwood, Mrs. Hill, Mrs. Graves, Mr. Berner

Votes: 268

11. Spare Time (1939)

15 min | Documentary, Short, Sport

6.3
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A look at how industry workers spend their time when they are not at work.

Director: Humphrey Jennings | Star: Laurie Lee

Votes: 153

12. Coal Face (1935)

11 min | Documentary, Short

6.3
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Documentary showing the dangerous working conditions in a Welsh coal mining community.

Director: Alberto Cavalcanti | Stars: W.H. Auden, Montagu Slater

Votes: 285

13. Humphrey Jennings: The Man Who Listened to Britain (2000 TV Movie)

50 min | Documentary, Biography

6.6
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Add a Plot

Director: Kevin Macdonald | Stars: James Purefoy, Richard Attenborough, Ken Cameron, Francis Cockburn

Votes: 29

14. Hitchcock on Grierson (1965 TV Movie)

45 min | Documentary

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A tribute to the Father of Documentary, by the Master of Suspense.

Stars: John Grierson, Alfred Hitchcock

15. Industrial Britain (1931)

21 min | Documentary, Short

6.4
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A quick look at the different industries of Britain circa 1931.

Director: Robert J. Flaherty | Star: Donald Calthrop

Votes: 127

16. Documenting John Grierson (2014)

30 min | Documentary, Short, Biography

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Add a Plot

Director: Laurence Henson | Stars: Bill Paterson, Eleanor Beattie, Kirwan Cox, Norris Davidson

17. Grierson (1973)

58 min | Documentary, Biography

7.8
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

The story of John Grierson, the British documentary movement, and Canada's National Film Board.

Director: Roger Blais | Stars: Michael Kane, Monique Miller, John Amess, Edgar Anstey

Votes: 25

18. Shipyard (1935)

24 min | Documentary, Short

6.0
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The building and launch of an ocean liner.

Director: Paul Rotha

Votes: 73

19. Britain Through a Lens - The Documentary Film Mob (2011 TV Movie)

60 min | Documentary

7.5
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A film that shows how, from 1929 to the end of World War Two, a small group of well-to-do film makers' and government bureaucrats started the British documentary genre.

Director: Chris Durlacher | Stars: Steven Mackintosh, Edgar Anstey, H.E. Fowle, Stuart Legg

Votes: 13

20. John Grierson (1959)

15 min | Short

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A record of an address by John Grierson at the National Film Theatre in August 1959.

Director: Hazel Wilkinson | Star: John Grierson

21. Land of Promise (1946)

67 min | Documentary

7.5
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Described as a 'film argument' about homes and houses, this film is in three parts showing houses as they were, houses as they are and houses as they might be.

Director: Paul Rotha | Stars: Frederick Allen, Elizabeth Cowell, Henry Hallatt, Herbert Lomas

Votes: 17

22. Monsieur John Grierson (1974)

58 min

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John Grierson coined the word "documentary" and was a key figure in the history of the documentary film worldwide. His best-known accomplishments are starting the British documentary ... See full summary »

Director: Roger Blais | Star: Monique Miller



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