Making Me Happy Now: Documentaries I Can't Stop Watching
It’s been awhile but it’s time for another Making Me Happy Now post! This is one I’ve been waiting to share for awhile. One of my favorite Friday evenings is when I get to have a glass of wine and relax while watching a can’t-believe-it’s-true documentary. Why is it so relaxing to learn the ins and outs of a murder case?!? Not that that’s the only type of documentary we watch. From triplets who didn’t know they were triplets to the Silicon Valley scam, these docs hooked me.
What makes me happy about these documentaries is that they tell real, incredible stories. Some made me gasp, some made me cry, some made me laugh, and they all made me think. Here are some of the can’t-miss documentaries on my list:
Three Identical Strangers (Hulu)
From about fifteen minutes in until the very end I sat there in shock. This is the story of triplets that were separated at birth and only discovered each other through the sheer coincidence of two of them going to the same community college in NY state. Besides getting to watch how the brothers got to know each other and becoming minor celebrities, the documentary also reveals something much, much crazier and bigger than just the three men.
Making a Murderer Season 2 (Netflix)
The first season of Making a Murderer was definitely the gateway to my documentary obsession. Season two is very different in that it is now following Steven Avery and Brendan Dassey’s ongoing legal battles. It gives you a dive into the legal system, how convictions can or cannot be overturned, and how a team of lawyers mounts a defense. It wasn’t as shocking as the first season but, if you’re into the case and still undecided if the pair is guilty or innocent, it’s definitely worth watching.
The Staircase (Netflix)
Similar to Making a Murderer, The Staircase chronicles a very complicated murder and legal case in North Carolina. Michael Peterson claimed his wife’s death was caused by a fall down a back staircase in their home. The documentary series follows the court case and everything that comes after it. I still can’t decide if he’s guilty or not.
The Inventor: Out for Blood in Silicon Valley (HBO)
This is the latest documentary I feel like everyone is talking about. It talks about the rise and fall of Theranos and its founder/CEO Elizabeth Holmes. It is CRAZY. Like I don’t know how I missed this whole thing when it was actually going on. Theranos was supposed to be this revolutionary technology and Holmes a visionary but it went so, so wrong. Besides being an incredible, horrible story, there is also a book (Bad Blood by John Carreyrou) and a podcast (The Dropout).
Amanda Knox (Netflix)
This documentary fascinated me because I vividly remember the Amanda Knox trials. We are about the same age and lots of my friends studied abroad in college. It’s interesting to learn how she became vilified by the press and hear in her own words what it was like to be accused of a horrible crime.
Get Me Roger Stone (Netflix)
If you want to get really pissed off by American politics, then you should watch this. I watched it about a week after the FBI raided Roger Stone’s home because I had heard his name but literally knew nothing about him. To summarize: he’s the worst. But the documentary is worth a watch.
Honorable mentions: Fyre (Netflix), Fyre Fest (Hulu), Wild, Wild Country (Netflix), Mommy Dead and Dearest (HBO)