Did you know WORLD films are also streaming on Prime Video? Visit the PBS Documentaries channel to watch films exploring themes like race in America, voting rights, healthcare, immigration and more.
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Buffalo Soldiers: Fighting on Two Fronts | Local, USA
The 14th Amendment promised citizenship in exchange for enlistment, prompting many African American men to do so. These “Buffalo Soldiers” participated in the subjugation of Native peoples and went up against Filipinos in the Spanish-American War. The film examines their role in U.S. history, how they fought in military conflicts abroad, and their civil rights struggles at home.
The Accused: Damned or Devoted? | Doc World
Cleric Khadim Hussain Rizvi has one mission: to preserve blasphemy laws in Pakistan which prescribe a mandatory death sentence for disrespecting The Prophet Muhammad and life imprisonment for desecrating the Holy Quran. But there’s more to this mission: Rizvi is running for the country's highest office where everyone is just a pawn in his quest for absolute power.
Set in the cutthroat, male-dominated world of high school debate, Girl Talk tells the compelling story of five girls on the diverse, top-ranked Massachusetts team at Newton South. Often talked over, underrepresented and judged differently than their male counterparts, each girl learns to navigate gender biases, reminding us that equal rights and freedom of expression are worth fighting for.
While Asian Americans have faced a double pandemic of COVID-19 and anti-Asian racism, the rise of solidarity efforts within Asian American and other BIPOC communities gives us moments of joy, resilience, and hope as we rebuild our lives. This series of documentary shorts move beyond the pandemic and reflect the complexities of Asian American experiences in this critical moment.
Breach of Trust | Local, USA
Told from the point of view of women advocating for accountability and change, Breach of Trust examines the sexual assault scandal at the University of Southern California and details crimes committed by former gynecologist Dr. George Tyndall, as well as exposing the active cover-up on the part of the administration.
Extremism in America | Local, USA
According to government officials, domestic terrorism by white supremacists is the nation's most urgent threat. Extremism in America shows how the spread of extremist beliefs and violence was downplayed for decades by policymakers and law enforcement even as this dangerous ideology, fueled by racism, grew into a potent force today.
Keep It a Secret | Doc World
In 1972, every international sporting event in Ireland was cancelled...except for one. Surf pioneers transcended The Troubles' hostilities to host the '72 Eurosurf Championship. The film recounts the inspiring story of the dawn of Irish surfing, revealing how the sport gave young people hope while forever changing their lives, and how their community would leave a lasting impression upon Ireland.
Ganden: A Joyful Land | Doc World
Likened by Buddhists to the Vatican City, Ganden is considered the most influential monastery of Tibetan Buddhism. Monks lived in the monastery for more than 500 years before a brutal invasion drove them to India. Ganden: A Joyful Land is a look at the lives and remembrances of the remaining generation of monks to have studied at the monastery in Tibet where the Dalai Lama’s lineage began.
Fannie Lou Hamer's America | America ReFramed
A portrait of a civil rights activist and the injustices in America that made her work essential. Through public speeches, personal interviews, and powerful songs of the fearless Mississippi sharecropper-turned-human-rights-activist, the film explores and celebrates the lesser-known life of one of the Civil Rights Movement’s greatest leaders.
A Tale of Three Chinatowns | Local, USA
Dive deep into the survival of urban ethnic neighborhoods in three American cities: Washington, D.C., Chicago, and Boston. Through the voices of residents, community activists, developers, and government officials, the film looks at the forces altering each community and the challenges that go with them, including the pressing issue of urban development and gentrification.
Sands of Silence: Waves of Courage | Doc World
A 15-year quest to expose the underworld of sexual exploitation and trafficking leads reporter Chelo Alvarez-Stehle to the windswept beach where her childhood ended, and family secrets began. As she documents the transformation of a sex-trafficking survivor, Chelo undertakes a parallel journey of healing and introspection, and sets out to shatter the silence about sexual abuse in her own life.
For the Love of Rutland | America ReFramed
An attempt to bring Syrian refugees to invigorate the economically struggling and predominantly white town of Rutland, VT unleashes deep partisan rancor. Despite a lifetime of feeling invalidated and shamed for her poverty and addiction, long-time Rutland resident, Stacie, emerges as an unexpected and resilient leader in a town divided by class, cultural values and political leanings.
Heaven: Can You Hear Me? | Local, USA
In Philadelphia, gun violence is the leading cause of death for young Black men. Explore the impact on families through the eyes of mothers like one woman whose youngest of four sons was murdered. The film demonstrates the challenges gun violence prevention advocates confront while allowing viewers to understand the often-untold trauma and resilience of survivors.
Cocaine Prison | Doc World
Follows the lives of three Bolivians who work at the lowest levels of the cocaine trade, two inmates of a prison film their daily experiences, while one inmate's sister must decide whether to traffic cocaine or pursue a college education. The film bridges the ever-widening gap between the North and the South and brings a new perspective to the War on Drugs being waged in the Andes.
First Vote | America ReFramed
With unparalleled access to a diverse cross section of politically engaged Chinese Americans, watch a character-driven verité look at Chinese American electoral organizing in North Carolina and Ohio. The film weaves their stories from the presidential election of 2016 to the 2018 midterms, and explores the intersections between immigration, voting rights and racial justice.
Metcalfe Park: Black Vote Rising | Local, USA
On April 7, Wisconsin held its primary election at the beginning of the pandemic in the U.S. An estimated 16 percent of Black voters were disenfranchised in Milwaukee. Danell Cross and Melody McCurtis are determined to prevent this from happening again. Follow the mother-daughter activist team as they organize their Black community to prepare for the 2020 presidential election and its challenges.
Border South | Doc World
Filmed over five years, this film follows migrant routes from southern Mexico to the U.S. Mexico Border. A vivid portrait of the thousands of immigrants who disappear along the trail, the film reveals the immigrants’ resilience, ingenuity, and humor as it exposes a global migration system that renders human beings invisible in life as well as death.
In a political moment defined by partisan conflict, explore the state of our democracy as seen through the eyes of two opposing grassroots political leaders in Lehigh Valley, Pennsylvania: a pivotal county that voted for Obama twice and then flipped to Trump in 2016. Over the course of three years, the film shows that their primary struggle was not against each other, but against the political machines that control their respective parties.
Legal Lens | Local, USA
Twelve Harvard Law students from six countries explore how laws and regulations can both disrupt lives and encourage constructive change. With intimate and powerful profiles of people – either caught in or helped by the levers of the law – the film examines the jeopardy to people's homes and lives.
Pulitzer Prize-winning journalists Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn explore the causes and costs of addiction, poverty and incarceration plaguing America, from the inner city to small towns like Yamhill, Oregon. While pockets of empathy and aid exist, are they enough to rescue the thousands of Americans in despair, for whom the American Dream of self-reliance is impossibly out of reach?
Pandemic in Seattle | Local, USA
With exclusive access to Seattle and King County's public health director, get a behind-the-scenes look at how public health cared for it most vulnerable in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic. Witness how local officials scrambled to stop the spread of the virus, tracked and isolated those who became ill, and educated people about what they could do to help.
Road Runners | Doc World
In Montego Bay, Jamaica, three athletes from Spot Valley High School prepare to compete in the island’s greatest sporting event: Champs. Follow the students over a year and explore the historic and contemporary issues of the island; see what it means to grow up in Jamaica, and learn why these young athletes are striving for success that could determine the rest of their lives.
Siqueiros: Walls of Passion | Doc World
The story of Mexican visual artist David Alfaro Siqueiros, one of the great Mexican artists of the 20th century. As one of the primary advocates of modern public art, he was one of the first muralists to paint on the exterior of buildings to bring art closer to the people. Get to know this controversy-stirring revolutionary and activist who painted on an epic scale.
Decolonizing Mental Health | Local, USA
The mental health field operates around a centre defined by a whiteness of theory and practice. It’s a colonization that has rarely been questioned. By focusing on the work of therapists and individuals of color, the film and digital series calls for a redressal of the ways in which we define psychiatric illness while discussing what a more responsive mental health care system should look like.
The Conversation Remix | Local, USA
Explore the present catharsis we are living in following the death of George Floyd on May 25, 2020. Through three character-driven films that present a vibrant collage of people’s lives and experiences, dive into how the current uprising is impacting communities and how we can contribute to discussions about racial justice reform.
Tutwiler | America ReFramed
Taking audiences into Alabama's only women's maximum security penitentiary, Julia Tutwiler Prison, the film explores the Alabama Prison Birth Project, helping expectant and new mothers learn childbirth and parenting skills while dealing with the pain of being separated from their children.