Streaming services like Netflix, HBO Max, Amazon Prime Video and others are expanding their documentary offerings.
Apple TV+ and Netflix are commemorating the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks with two documentaries that chronicle the tragic events and give insight into how they impacted the course of the nation.
Netflix is also releasing documentaries that focus on many prominent figures, including “Blood Brothers: Malcolm X & Muhammad Ali,” which depicts the figures’ close friendship and ultimate falling out, and “Schumacher,” which gives an in-depth look at the life and career of Formula 1 champion Michael Schumacher.
Here, WWD rounds up 11 documentaries and docu-series to watch in September 2021. Read on for more.
“9/11: Inside the President’s War Room”
Stream on Apple TV+ on Sept. 1
The documentary, which is narrated by Jeff Daniels, recounts the tragic events of the 9/11 terrorist attacks through former President George W. Bush’s eyes with interviews with the president, former Vice President Dick Cheney and other members of the president’s cabinet.
“Turning Point: 9/11 and the War on Terror”
Stream on Netflix on Sept. 1
The five-part docu-series chronicles the events of the terrorist attacks and offers personal stories on how the events changed the course of the nation. The series includes interviews with officials from multiple U.S. presidential administrations, former CIA members, U.S. military veterans and Afghanistan National Army soldiers.
“Happier Than Ever: A Love Letter to Los Angeles”
Stream on Disney+ on Sept. 3
Billie Eilish’s latest documentary film is a concert experience for her recently released sophomore album, “Happier Than Ever.” The documentary offers an intimate performance of the singer’s album at the legendary Hollywood Bowl and includes animated elements that take viewers on a journey through Eilish’s hometown of Los Angeles.
“Bitchin’: The Sound and Fury of Rick James”
Watch on Showtime on Sept. 3
The new Showtime documentary gives a closer look at the life and career of legendary R&B musician Rick James. The documentary includes footage from James’ performances, behind-the-scenes videos and interviews with his collaborators and friends.
“Blood Brothers: Malcolm X and Muhammad Ali”
Stream on Netflix on Sept. 9
The documentary gives an in-depth look at the three-year friendship between Malcolm X and Muhammad Ali and their subsequent falling out. Insight into their friendship is offered by the figures’ family members and close friends, including Malcolm X’s daughter Ilyasah Shabazz and Ali’s brother Rahman and daughters Maryum and Hana.
Stream on Amazon Prime Video on Sept. 10
The four-part docu-series focuses on multilevel marketing fashion brand LuLaRoe and the controversy surrounding its eccentric founders. The brand came under controversy recently for capitalizing on its staff of young mothers who peddled its defective products.
“Shock Doc: The Curse of Lizzie Borden”
Stream on Discovery+ on Sept. 10
The latest installment of Discovery+’s “Shock Doc” series focuses on Lizzie Borden, who was tried and acquitted of the murders of her father and stepmother in 1892. The series follows a group of paranormal investigators who examine “whether a dark family curse led to the most infamous axe murders of all time,” according to the streaming service.
Stream on Netflix on Sept. 15
“Schumacher” gives a look at seven-time Formula One champion Michael Schumacher’s life and career through rare interviews and unreleased archival footage that show his rise to stardom and the many challenges he’s faced participating in the sport.
“Curse of the Chippendales”
Stream on Discovery+ on Sept. 24
The Discovery+ documentary tells the story of the famous dance group and how their legacy has included murder plots and suspicious deaths.
Stream on HBO Max on Sept. 26
Filmmaker Ry Russo-Young’s three-part docu-series tells the story of her two mothers and her upbringing in the late 1970s and early 1980s at a time when the concept of a gay couple with children wasn’t socially accepted. The docu-series recounts Russo-Young and her sister’s childhood and how it was threatened by an unexpected lawsuit from their mothers’ sperm donor.
“The Way Down: God, Greed and the Cult of Gwen Shamblin”
Stream on HBO Max on Sept. 30
“The Way Down” focuses on the Tennessee-based Remnant Fellowship Church and its leader, Gwen Shamblin Lara, who founded the Christian weight loss program called “The Weigh Down Workshop.” The five-part docu-series explores Lara’s rise to fame and examines her controversial practices and the abuse allegations against her from former church members.
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