What’s the best thing to do when you’re stoned and bored? Watch Netflix, of course. But as you know, there’s so much to choose from, and it can be hard to settle on just one thing when you’re high. While shows like The Office and Grace and Frankie can entertain you for hours, so can a good documentary. From wild conspiracy theories to issues like mass incarceration, there’s a film for just about everything. And a lot of them can teach you a thing or two. The next time you cuddle up on the couch with your Mary Jane, check out these 5 documentaries on Netflix that will make you smarter.
If you want to hear an alarming statistic, here’s one for you: “The United States is home to five percent of the world’s population and 25 percent of the world’s prisoners.” Of the 2.3 million Americans currently behind bars, 40.2 percent of them are African-American males.
In the documentary 13th, filmmaker Ava DuVernay gives a closer look at the 13th amendment. You know, the one that abolished slavery over 150 years ago. More specifically, she argues that mass incarceration has basically replaced institutionalized slavery to not only control African-Americans but also to deprive them of their rights. If you’re someone who finds this to be a serious issue, and even if you don’t, this film will certainly make you think.
Jennifer Siebel Newsom’s documentary is one that stresses how the media is lacking positive role models for young women. From statistics to interviews to clips, all are used to reveal just how poorly television and the internet are representing women.
Also, the film makes it known that sexism is very much still a problem in American society. For example, the average teenage girl consumes as much as 10 hours of media a day. Meanwhile, only 5 percent of women hold influential positions in the industry.
3. We’re Not Broke
Most of what you hear from today’s law makers is that America is broke. And to “solve” that issue, people are being laid off, and budgets are getting cut. But what you might not realize is that major corporations like Google and Exxon are still reaping plenty of profit.
In a nutshell, Karen Hayes’ and Victoria Bruce’s We’re Not Broke lets you in on a secret about how the US is hiding more than a trillion dollars from Uncle Sam, forcing the ordinary tax payer to make up for what they aren’t contributing.
People lie, that’s nothing new. But in Yael Melamede’s documentary, you get to find out why some people act so irrationally. From a cheating wife to an admissions officer, the film contains interviews with people from all walks of life who have lied and were then forced to pay the price.
5. Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room
Based on the best-selling book Fortune, Alex Gibney’s documentary studies one of the largest business scandals in all American history. Specifically, the 2001 collapse of the Enron Corporation. Also, it evinces the traders’ involvement in the California electricity crisis.