Society Documentaries
Learn from the rich diaspora of communities around the world as they face pressing social issues like immigration, extremism & human rights.
Meet various communities around the world in society and social issue documentaries
Through documentaries, we can meet people all over the world and gain glimpses into their lives and struggles as they face crucial social issues or fight to improve their environment and life circumstances. More and more often, documentary filmmakers are partnering with campaigners and activists, who create rich, illustrative documentaries that raise global awareness and affect change on some of the most important issues of our time.

These documentaries take deep dives into social issues across countries and continents, from struggling with gun crime in America, to the battle between an all-female fighting unit and ISIS militants who kidnapped, raped and enslaved them, to the evangelical campaign sweeping through Uganda, turning towards biblical law and at one point proposing the death penalty for homosexuality.

Social documentaries help give a voice to those who are silenced
Documentary filmmakers often seek out marginalised societies who may not have the means to find an audience by themselves, or face persecution or prosecution if they were to speak out. One country known to silence its citizens is North Korea, where citizens are not allowed to travel abroad and the internet is strictly restricted. In North Korea: Voice From the Secret State, we meet army officers, a senior member of the security service, and an ordinary family who are contemplating escape, risking their lives and freedom to speak to North Koreans who have escaped to the South.

Refugees are another social group who are often spoken about, but rarely given a place to share their own voice and stories. Hotel For Refugees tells the story of how two world meet when a small Catholic town in Ireland becomes the new home for hundreds of Muslim Syrian asylum seekers brought over from refugee camps in Greece, to be housed in a former luxury hotel until their asylum status is approved. The documentary film follows the refugees as they assimilate into the local community, faced with friendly locals who feel that it is their duty to welcome them, while some others are anxious about the impact of so many strangers in their small town.

Documentaries about society and social issues are inspirational
Social issues documentaries often observe people who are rising up to make a difference in challenging situations, trying to stand up for themselves and their community. The courage of these people can be inspirational to all of us, even if we might not be facing the same issues ourselves. However, this can encourage viewers to stand up for social issues in their own communities and try to make a difference.

In fact, many of these documentaries are so remarkable that they end up winning awards at various film festivals. The Invisible War, which investigates the rape epidemic buried in the armed forces and exposes institutions that try to cover up its existence, marking profound social consequences, was nominated for 14 awards and won 11 of them, including awards from the Emmy Awards, Sundance Film Festival, and Peabody Awards.

Check out the full range of impactful social documentaries on iwonder today.