The Documentary Blog’s Top 20 Documentaries of 2012

The Imposter

Well, that’s all she wrote. Another year gone by and yet another list of great documentary films. I’d say overall 2012 was a pretty great year for film with a number of stand out docs that have continued to push the boundaries of non-fiction storytelling in an exciting, cinematic way. While I did miss a few films that I’d intended to catch (How to Survive a Plague being one of them), I’d say I’m pretty confident with this list overall. Lots of stand out films that I’ll be revisiting over and over and a few that deserved a nod simply due to big ambitions and unique visions. Congratulations to all of the great films and filmmakers of 2012 and here’s looking forward to 2013!

20. Women With Cows (Dir. Tell Aulin & Peter Gerdehag)

19. Jason Becker: Not Dead Yet (Dir. Jesse Vile)

18. The Ambassador (Dir. Mads Br├╝gger)

17. Beauty Is Embarrassing (Dir. Neil Berkeley)

16. Low and Clear (Dir. Kahlil Hudson & Tyler Hughen)

15. China Heavyweight (Dir. Yung Chang)

14. Samsara (Dir. Ron Fricke)

13. Jiro Dreams of Sushi (Dir. David Gelb)

12. Ai Wei Wei Never Sorry (Dir. Alison Klayman)

11. The Waiting Room (Dir. Peter Nicks)

10. West of Memphis (Dir. Amy Berg)

9. Indie Game: The Movie (Dir. Lisanne Pajot & James Swirsky)

8. Shut Up and Play the Hits (Dir. Will Lovelace & Dylan Southern)

7. Detropia (Dir. Heidi Ewing & Rachel Grady)

6. This Is Not a Film (Dir. Mojtaba Mirtahmasb & Jafar Panahi)

5. Stories We Tell (Dir. Sarah Polley)

4. Leviathan (Dir. Lucien Castaing-Taylor & Verena Paravel)

3. Tchoupitoulas (Dir. Bill Ross & Turner Ross)

2. The Act of Killing (Dir. Joshua Oppenheimer)

1. The Imposter (Dir. Bart Layton)

Honourable Mentions: Only the Young, Platform Moon, Searching for Sugar Man, Despite the Gods