20 Top Documentaries About Parenthood

Parenting is a magical, mystifying, and fulfilling expertise, however it is usually onerous, lonely, and costly. People usually really feel immense consolation in seeing others undergo related experiences. Whether it’s the exuberance of watching our youngsters develop and be taught or coping with loss and obstacles, we’re by no means alone. Examples of those poignant and tough household moments are all over the place, however nowhere are they extra related or extra accessible than in movie, notably documentary movies.

Child and mother reading
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Lovevery compiled and ranked 20 documentaries about parenthood, utilizing knowledge from Metacritic and IMDb. Each documentary was ranked in response to its Metascore. Ties have been damaged by IMDb person score and additional ties have been damaged by votes.

From the devastating to the divine, these tales inform tales of recent parenthood, sibling love and loss, and households ruined by habit, abuse, and secrets and techniques. These tales, documented on movie, are each relatable and unbelievable, providing glimpses of ourselves and our households.

Join Lovevery for 20 high documentaries about parenthood.

The Howards
Bryce Dallas Howard along with her father, Ron Howard, at The BAFTA Tea Party at Four Seasons Hotel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills on January 7, 2017 in Los Angeles, California.
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20. ‘Dads’ (2019)

– Director: Bryce Dallas Howard
– Metascore: 59
– IMDb person score: 6.6
– Runtime: 87 minutes

In her directorial debut, Bryce Dallas Howard teamed up along with her personal well-known father, actor-director Ron Howard, for this movie that includes a take a look at up to date fatherhood. Howard weaves her father’s story all through the movie and supplies an expanded view of fathers as caregivers, a job that social and structural forces principally assign to moms. Will Smith, Judd Apatow, Patton Oswalt, and Andy Griffith, in addition to nonfamous fathers from across the globe, share anecdotes and pearls of knowledge about what it means to be a dad.

19. ‘The Business of Being Born’ (2008)

– Director: Abby Epstein
– Metascore: 68
– IMDb person score: 7.4
– Runtime: 87 minutes

The Business of Being Born explores what it means to offer beginning within the fashionable world by wanting on the historical past of obstetrics and inspecting the methods by which beginning is an enormous enterprise. Featuring many {couples} who give beginning outdoors of hospitals, “The Business of Being Born” is particularly useful for individuals to find what choices exist outdoors of giving beginning within the de facto hospital setting.

18. ‘The Wolfpack’ (2015)

– Director: Crystal Moselle
– Metascore: 75
– IMDb person score: 7.0
– Runtime: 90 minutes

Six brothers within the Angulo household are confined to a New York City condo. Movies educate them the whole lot concerning the world, they usually be taught to emulate what they see by making elaborate costumes and reenacting their favourite movie scenes. The Wolfpack is a story about abuse, cohesion, resilience, and the ways in which motion pictures assist us to flee, create, and picture.

17. ’17 Blocks’ (2019)

– Director: Davy Rothbart
– Metascore: 81
– IMDb person score: 7.2
– Runtime: 96 minutes

The story of the Sanford household and their struggles with habit and gun violence unfolds by way of 20 years of residence movies. The movie’s title 17 Blocks is a reference to the gap between the Sanford household residence, in some of the harmful neighborhoods in Washington D.C., and the United States Capitol. While the story is tough to observe, it supplies an correct depiction of household life that extra privileged viewers might not in any other case see, and highlights the fact of struggling the United States inflicts on its poor.

16. ‘Elena’ (2012)

– Director: Petra Costa
– Metascore: 81
– IMDb person score: 7.6
– Runtime: 80 minutes

Petra leaves Brazil to search for her sister Elena in New York City the place each have gone, throughout completely different many years, to pursue the dream of turning into an actress—the identical dream their mom as soon as had. When Petra finally finds her sister, the reunion just isn’t what she anticipated. Elena is a story of sisterhood, motherhood, desires, and loss that Stephen Holden, writing for The New York Times, says “unfolds like a cinematic dream whose central image is water, which symbolizes the washing away of grief. But more than that, it represents the stream of life, with beautiful images of women floating through time.”

Three Identical Strangers
David Kellman, Robert “Bobby” Shafran and director Tim Wardle attend the world premiere “Three Identical Strangers” in the course of the Sundance Film Festival on January 19, 2018 in Park City, Utah.

15. ‘Three Identical Strangers’ (2018)

– Director: Tim Wardle
– Metascore: 81
– IMDb person score: 7.6
– Runtime: 96 minutes

Three younger males meet up in Nineteen Eighties New York, uncover they’re triplets separated at beginning, and try to uncover the mysterious purpose why within the stranger-than-fiction documentary Three Identical Strangers. The “why” is like one thing from a science-fiction movie and included a study on the effects of nature versus nurture. The movie additionally paperwork the numerous similarities the brothers share regardless of having been raised by completely different households with out information of each other till they have been adults, demonstrating the energy of genetic bonds.

14. ‘Motherland’ (2017)

– Director: Ramona S. Diaz
– Metascore: 84
– IMDb person score: 7.1
– Runtime: 94 minutes

The viewer good points entry to one of many busiest maternity hospitals within the Philippines in Motherland. The movie paperwork the experiences of moms, their households, and the hospital employees with humor and coronary heart. The eye-opening view into these girls’s lives and the poverty lots of them face, which exposes them to a steady cycle of being pregnant and childbirth, is explored with acuity and honesty.

13. ‘Our Time Machine’ (2019)

– Directors: S. Leo Chiang, Yang Sun
– Metascore: 84
– IMDb person score: 7.9
– Runtime: 86 minutes

The influential artist who goes by Maleonn creates Papa’s Time Machine, a stage present about time journey, that includes mechanical puppets to attempt to assist him come to phrases along with his father’s dementia. Maleonn groups up along with his father, Ma Ke, a widely known Peking Opera director, to create the autobiographical present, which confronts mortality and permits the 2 males to attach earlier than Ma Ke’s reminiscences fade.

12. ‘Hale County This Morning, This Evening’ (2018)

– Director: RaMell Ross
– Metascore: 85
– IMDb person score: 6.4
– Runtime: 76 minutes

Filmmaker RaMell Ross noticed and filmed the individuals of Hale County, Alabama, over the course of 5 years and presents a searing narrative on race and sophistication in a tight-knit, disenfranchised Black group. Nominated for an Academy Award, the movie focuses totally on two younger males, each highschool basketball gamers, one who goes on to varsity and one who has a toddler.

11. ‘One Child Nation’ (2019)

– Directors: Nanfu Wang, Jialing Zhang
– Metascore: 85
– IMDb person score: 7.5
– Runtime: 83 minutes

Filmmaker and first-time mom Nanfu Wang paperwork China’s one-child policy and its historical past. The movie explores the fallout of this social experiment and its impact on generations of households. The horrors uncovered by Wang are a legitimate argument towards governments proscribing the reproductive rights of its residents and reveal the disastrous affect such authorities intrusions can have.

Josh Aronson
Filmmaker Josh Aronson attends the Build Series to debate his movie “To Be of Service” at Build Studio on November 05, 2019 in New York City.
Jim Spellman/Getty Images

10. ‘Sound and Fury’ (2000)

– Director: Josh Aronson
– Metascore: 85
– IMDb person score: 7.9
– Runtime: 80 minutes

Sound and Fury is the story of each listening to and deaf members of a household and the choice they have to make a few controversial surgical procedure. The Academy Award-nominated movie issues three generations and examines the alternatives that households of deaf kids face.

9. Won’t You Be My Neighbor? (2018)

– Director: Morgan Neville
– Metascore: 85
– IMDb person score: 8.4
– Runtime: 95 minutes

This movie is an exploration into the life of youngsters’s tv pioneer Fred Rogers. Rogers supplied a protected area for generations of youngsters to be taught worthwhile and typically tough life classes that stay related at this time. His collection Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood broached matters that many exhibits of the time would not dare.

8. ‘Strong Island’ (2017)

– Director: Yance Ford
– Metascore: 86
– IMDb person score: 6.4
– Runtime: 107 minutes

Filmmaker Yance Ford tells the story of his brother, who was murdered at 24 by a white man later let loose. Ford’s movie is a portrait of a household that moved from the South to attempt to escape racism, labored onerous to acquire the American dream, and was finally shattered by horrific and unimaginable loss. Strong Island was nominated for an Academy Award.

7. ‘Black Mother’ (2018)

– Director: Khalik Allah
– Metascore: 86
– IMDb person score: 6.8
– Runtime: 77 minutes

This journey by way of Jamaica is each wondrous and tragic. The movie just isn’t solely a tribute to Jamaica and its historical past, individuals, and tradition but in addition to its girls. Black Mother is damaged into three elements, representing the trimesters of being pregnant, giving it the texture of a beginning journey.

6. ‘To Be and to Have’ (2002)

– Director: Nicolas Philibert
– Metascore: 87
– IMDb person score: 7.8
– Runtime: 104 minutes

In a one-room schoolhouse in rural France, instructor Georges Lopez teaches kids of various ages starting from 4 to 11. To Be and to Have paperwork the dedication of 1 instructor and provides a view into childhood training and the way wondrous it may be. Writing for The Dissolve, Noel Murray famous, “This movie is a portal, leading to a living museum of childhood at its most poignant.”

(*20*)Sasha Joseph Neulinger
Director Sasha Joseph Neulinger attends “Rewind” screening in the course of the 2019 Tribeca Film Festival at Village East Cinema on April 27, 2019 in New York City.
Slaven Vlasic/Getty Images for Tribeca Film Festival/Getty Images

5. ‘Rewind’ (2019)

– Director: Sasha Joseph Neulinger
– Metascore: 87
– IMDb person score: 8.0
– Runtime: 86 minutes

Filmmaker Sasha Joseph Neulinger uncovers generations of sexual abuse after discovering his father’s residence video assortment. Neulinger explores the issue of prosecuting such instances, whereas additionally utilizing the movie as a approach to work by way of his trauma and assist others who’ve suffered abuse.

4. ‘Dick Johnson Is Dead’ (2020)

– Director: Kirsten Johnson
– Metascore: 89
– IMDb person score: 7.5
– Runtime: 89 minutes

A darkly comedic take a look at demise and the getting old course of, the movie imagines all of the methods director Kirsten Johnson’s father Dick might die, whereas additionally presenting a poignant portrayal of a father/daughter relationship. Both hilarious and touching, Johnson levels creative and weird demise situations. Writing for The Hollywood Reporter, Todd McCarthy referred to as the movie “brilliantly original in every way” and “one of the craftiest and funniest love letters ever composed.”

3. ‘For Sama’ (2019)

– Directors: Waad Al-Kateab, Edward Watts
– Metascore: 89
– IMDb person score: 8.5
– Runtime: 100 minutes

This touching love letter from a mom to her daughter follows filmmaker Waad Al-Kateab by way of a number of milestones in her life together with love, marriage, and the beginning of her daughter, Sama. This Oscar-nominated documentary is a tragic story of conflict detailing the rebellion in Aleppo, and the heart-wrenching choice a mom should make to guard her daughter.

2. ‘Minding the Gap’ (2018)

– Director: Bing Liu
– Metascore: 90
– IMDb person score: 8.1
– Runtime: 93 minutes

Minding the Gap focuses on three younger associates who use skateboarding to flee the cruel realities of their lives, together with household dysfunction, in a declining Rust Belt city. The movie is a crucial commentary on class, race, and politics with a story on skate tradition. It was nominated for an Academy Award.

Sarah Polley
Filmmaker Sarah Polley speaks at “Stories We Tell” premiere in the course of the 2012 Toronto International Film Festival on September 8, 2012 in Toronto, Canada.
Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images

1. ‘Stories We Tell’ (2012)

– Director: Sarah Polley
– Metascore: 91
– IMDb person score: 7.5
– Runtime: 108 minutes

Actress and filmmaker Sarah Polley explores her household historical past, uncovering truths and secrets and techniques, in Stories We Tell. The tales her members of the family share are related, however the particulars differ relying on which member is relaying the story. At the center of Polley’s movie is her mom, who died in 1990 and who stays a thriller in some ways.

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