Best Documentary Movies of 1933


The English Potter

7.1/10 IMDB

A short, silent documentary by Robert J. Flaherty about pottery in England.

Directed by: Robert J. Flaherty
Release date: 1933-01-01
Best Documentary Movies of 1933 : 90° South

90° South

7.4/10 IMDB

This is a documentary of Captain R.F. Scott's second Antarctic expedition, begun in 1910. The British, under Scott, attempted to reach the South Pole before Roald Amundsen's Norwegians. Scott's writings reveal that the British made it to the South Pole, only to find that the Norwegians had gotten there first. Scott, and the other four men who had made it to the Pole with him, died on the return trip.

Starring: Tom Crean, Herbert G. Ponting, E.R.G.R. Evans, Edward Leicester Atkinson, Albert Balson, Alfred B. Cheetham, Apsley Cherry-Garrard, Tom Crean, Bernard C. Day, Frank Debenham ..
Directed by: Herbert G. Ponting
Release date: 1933-01-01

A Small Town in China

5.4/10 IMDB

Shot by Methodist missionaries, this is an incredibly charming record of small-town life in an unidentified location in China. We see a bustling wharf town with canal-side dwellings, distinctive school buildings, and a hospital where newly graduated nurses pose for a group portrait. The relaxed smiles of Chinese and Europeans are captured in intimate close-ups, suggesting a tight-knit community.

Release date: 1933-01-01

New Deal Rhythm

5.1/10 IMDB

Plotless musical revue celebrating President Franklin D. Roosevelt's National Recovery Administration.

Starring: Charles Rogers, Shirley Temple, Marjorie Main, Dorothy Lee ..
Directed by: Monte Brice
Release date: 1933-01-01
Best Documentary Movies of 1933 : Elysia, Valley of the Nude

Elysia, Valley of the Nude

5.7/10 IMDB

James Mack, a reporter for the International News Bureau, is assigned by his editor to do a story on the phenomenon of nudist colonies.

Starring: Constance Allen, Bryan Foy, Hobart Glassey, James Mack, Carl Harbaugh ..
Directed by: Bryan Foy, Carl Harbaugh
Release date: 1933-10-27
Best Documentary Movies of 1933 : All at Sea

All at Sea

5.6/10 IMDB

"All at Sea" is a short documentary of Cooke, Charlie Chaplin and Paulette Goddard all on Chaplin's yacht on an afternoon sail.

Starring: Charlie Chaplin, Alistair Cooke, Paulette Goddard ..
Release date: 1933-01-01
Best Documentary Movies of 1933 : In the Wake of the Bounty

In the Wake of the Bounty

4.7/10 IMDB

The film explores the story of the Bounty and is based on the 1932 novel Mutiny on the Bounty by Charles Nordhoff and James Norman Hall.

Starring: Arthur Greenaway, Mayne Lynton, Errol Flynn, Victor Gouriet, John Warwick, Charles Chauvel, Elsa Chauvel ..
Directed by: Charles Chauvel
Release date: 1933-03-14
Best Documentary Movies of 1933 : Eisenstein in Mexico

Eisenstein in Mexico

6.0/10 IMDB

The story of Russian director Sergei M. Eisenstein in Mexico trying to film his unfinished ¡Que Viva Mexico! - Da zdravstvuyet Meksika! (1979).

Directed by: Sergei Eisenstein
Release date: 1933-10-13
Best Documentary Movies of 1933 : The Rugged Island: A Shetland Lyric

The Rugged Island: A Shetland Lyric

7.6/10 IMDB

Hailed by John Grierson as 'one of the best descriptions of life in the country anybody has yet made', the film follows a young couple torn between the choice of emigration to Australia or remaining to work their croft in Shetland.

Starring: John Gilbertson, Enga Stout ..
Directed by: Jenny Gilbertson
Release date: 1933-01-01

The Film Parade

7.4/10 IMDB

Pioneer filmmaker J. Stuart Blackton was intrigued by the idea of a film about the history of the movies as early as 1915. He finally released a 52-minute feature called The Film Parade that was shown in New York and favorably reviewed by "Variety" in 1933. He continued tinkering with the film for the rest of the decade, and later filmmakers and distributors used Blackton's footage for stock or to produce their own variously titled and truncated versions. -UCLA Film & Television Archive

Starring: Kent Stevenson, Charlie Chaplin, Marlene Dietrich, Tom Mix, Gilbert M. Anderson, Theda Bara, Clara Bow, John Bunny, Francis X. Bushman, Harry Carey ..
Directed by: J. Stuart Blackton
Release date: 1933-01-01
Best Documentary Movies of 1933 : Krakatoa


6.7/10 IMDB

Krakatoa is a 1933 American Pre-Code short documentary film produced by Joe Rock. The story describes how the 1883 eruption of Krakatoa on the island blew half of the large island into the air that produced a tsunami, and an air wave that was felt seven times around the globe. The eruption also emitted tons of dust that dimmed the sun all over the world for many months. It won the Academy Award in 1934 for Best Short Subject (Novelty).

Starring: Graham McNamee ..
Directed by: Joe Rock, E.W. Hammons
Release date: 1933-04-23

Forgotten Men

6.8/10 IMDB

Producer Samuel Cummins, along with five participants in World War I, discuss the key events of the war as illustrated by an assemblage of battlefield and other documentary footage. This film is not the same as, but seems likely to have either inspired or been inspired by, Norman Lee's British production of the same title (q.v.), apparently released the following year.

Starring: Samuel Cummins ..
Directed by: Bud Pollard
Release date: 1933-02-13

Cable Ship

5.7/10 IMDB

A short GPO documentary showing how undersea telephone cables are repaired.

Directed by: Alexander Shaw
Release date: 1933-06-30
Best Documentary Movies of 1933 : Jazz a la Cuba

Jazz a la Cuba

6.4/10 IMDB

One of the short little films featuring Don Aspiazu of his own orchestra, a good example of the style of Cubano jazz in the 1920's and 1930's, combined with some sporadic, picturesque images of contemporary Cuba.

Starring: Don Aspiazu ..
Release date: 1933-07-07

The Coming of the Dial

5.5/10 IMDB

A film made by the British General Post Office (GPO) in 1933, promoting the automation of telephone exchanges.

Directed by: Stuart Legg
Release date: 1933-01-01

Throttle Pushers

5.9/10 IMDB

Highlights the fast-paced and dangerous world of professional auto racing.

Starring: Pete Smith ..
Directed by: Jules White
Release date: 1933-04-01
Best Documentary Movies of 1933 : Blood and Soil

Blood and Soil

5.4/10 IMDB

Blood and Soil (German: Blut und Boden) refers to the ideology focussing on a concept of ethnicity based on descent (Blood) and homeland (Soil). It celebrates the relationship of a people to the land that they occupy and cultivate and places high esteem on the virtues of the bucolic (as opposed to urban) living. From this propaganda film, we learn, how hard it is to be a peasant when liberals rule the state. A family of peasants is forced to sell their property and run away to a big city, where they are forced to live in the poverty. Thankfully when the Nazis take power, they may finally come back and live a happy life. Besides the main plot, there is also educational elements here: Germans are informed how few of them will remain in 2050 year if they don't start a mass reproduction.

Starring: Heinz Berghaus, Carl de Vogt, Herta Scheel, Jakob Sinn, Hans Stock ..
Directed by: Walter Ruttmann, Hans von Passavant, Rolf von Sonjevski-Jamrowski
Release date: 1933-11-30

Duck Hunters' Paradise

5.3/10 IMDB

This short follows two duck hunters in the Sacramento River Valley.

Starring: Paul Gerard Smith ..
Directed by: Harold Austin
Release date: 1933-01-18

High Spots of the Far East

5.7/10 IMDB

Highlights include China's Pearl River, Temple of 500 Buddhas and Siam's palaces.

Directed by: E.M. Newman
Release date: 1933-02-06

Hollywood on Parade No. B-5

5.6/10 IMDB

Comedian Lloyd Hamilton escorts a group of beauty contest winners to various Hollywood night spots.

Starring: Mae West, Zeppo Marx, Groucho Marx, Chico Marx, Fay Wray, Lloyd Hamilton, Buster Crabbe, Jack Oakie, Loretta Young, Russ Columbo ..
Directed by: Louis Lewyn
Release date: 1933-12-01

Hitlers Aufruf an das deutsche Volk

7.0/10 IMDB

Hitler's first speech as the elected Chancellor of Germany. Subject is a call for German's to hand the Nazi party total power in Germany.

Starring: Adolf Hitler ..
Release date: 1933-07-25

Hockey Champions

4.2/10 IMDB

The fourth and final game in the 1933 playoffs for the Stanley Cup played at Maple Leaf Gardens in Toronto. The match, between the Toronto Maple Leafs and the New York Rangers, is described by the well-known sports commentator Foster Hewitt. Hewitt also interviews the players and coaches of both teams in their respective dressing rooms. Scoreless at the end of regulation time, the game goes into overtime: now the first goal scored will decide the game. The Rangers score to take the Cup.

Directed by: Gordon Sparling
Release date: 1933-09-08
Best Documentary Movies of 1933 : Fiji and Samoa: The Cannibal Isles

Fiji and Samoa: The Cannibal Isles

3.0/10 IMDB

Another FitzPatrick TravelTalk, taking us to the titular islands.

Starring: James A. FitzPatrick ..
Directed by: James A. FitzPatrick
Release date: 1933-01-31
Best Documentary Movies of 1933 : India Speaks

India Speaks

0.0/10 IMDB

A documentary of explorer Richard Halliburton's travels on the Indian sub-continent, featuring a mix of real and staged footage.

Starring: Richard Halliburton ..
Directed by: Walter Futter, Richard Halliburton
Release date: 1933-04-28

First Repeal Gin Shipped

0.0/10 IMDB

A Hearst Metrotone prohibition newsreel.

Release date: 1933-01-01
Best Documentary Movies of 1933 : Why Nudism: An Expose of Nudism

Why Nudism: An Expose of Nudism

0.0/10 IMDB

A documentary that tries to explain nudism.

Release date: 1933-01-01
Best Documentary Movies of 1933 : Mussolini Speaks

Mussolini Speaks

0.0/10 IMDB

Mussolini Speaks is a 1933 documentary film highlighting the first 10 years of Benito Mussolini’s rule as Prime Minister of Italy. The film, narrated by U.S. radio broadcaster Lowell Thomas, includes footage of the Fascists’ March on Rome, the Lateran Treaty between Italy and The Holy See, engineering projects in Italy and North Africa, and excerpts of speeches by Mussolini.

Starring: Lowell Thomas ..
Directed by: Edgar G. Ulmer
Release date: 1933-03-10

Rebuilding Indian Country

0.0/10 IMDB

Release date: 1933-01-01
Best Documentary Movies of 1933 : So This Is London

So This Is London

0.0/10 IMDB

London at its best? This gorgeously photographed portrait of the capital was made by Marion Grierson, sister of the more famous John Grierson, often hailed as the father of documentary film. The film transcends the typical travelogue thanks to the photography of William Shenton and Grierson's poetic approach to editing - which prefigures modern films like the acclaimed From the Sea to the Land Beyond (2012). The film achieved international fame at the time of its original release, yet Marion Grierson is almost completely overshadowed in the history of British documentary film by her brother John.

Directed by: Marion Grierson
Release date: 1933-01-01
Best Documentary Movies of 1933 : Papua and Kalabahai, Weird Haunts of Strange People

Papua and Kalabahai, Weird Haunts of Strange People

0.0/10 IMDB

This Traveltalk series short visits Papua and Kalabahai.

Starring: James A. FitzPatrick ..
Directed by: James A. FitzPatrick
Release date: 1933-09-09
Best Documentary Movies of 1933 : Wonderland of California

Wonderland of California

0.0/10 IMDB

Short film made up of various clips showcasing the Cinecolor process, including a visit to a Marx Brothers film set.

Starring: Groucho Marx, Margaret Dumont, Harpo Marx, Chico Marx, Robert Greig ..
Release date: 1933-01-01
Best Documentary Movies of 1933 : Unemployed: The Destiny of Millions

Unemployed: The Destiny of Millions

0.0/10 IMDB

Willy Zielke was a brilliant photographer and filmmaker from ?od? who suffered greatly at the hands of the Nazis: His German feature films of the 1930s, Arbeitslos and Das Stahltier, were banned; Leni Riefenstahl made use of him to conceive, direct, and shoot the prologue for Olympia, but gave him no credit; and later, in a mentally incapacitated state, he was confined to an insane asylum where he was forcibly sterilized, only to be released after five years in 1942 so that Riefenstahl could make use of him once again on the final shooting of Tiefland. Zielke’s 1933 film Arbeitslos, commissioned by a Maffei railway company unemployment shelter, presented a despairing portrait of a nation in near-total collapse.

Directed by: Willy Zielke
Release date: 1933-01-01


0.0/10 IMDB

A documentary almanac about the life of the Soviet capital during the period of the extensive construction of socialism. The film shows the transformation of the external appearance of Moscow, the construction of new avenues, metro lines, residential buildings for workers, and the formation of a new way of life for a worker. There are also shots in the film that depict the leaders of the working proletariat: vols. I. Stalin, S. Kirov, S. Ordzhonikidze and others.

Directed by: ?????? ?????, ????? ??????????
Release date: 1933-05-01
Best Documentary Movies of 1933 : The Sea

The Sea

0.0/10 IMDB

The Sea [Morze] is a 1933 Polish short documentary film directed by Wanda Jakubowska. It was nominated for an Academy Award in 1933 for Best Short Subject (Novelty).

Directed by: Wanda Jakubowska, Jerzy Zarzycki
Release date: 1933-05-07

The Changing Year

0.0/10 IMDB

'Couple fall in love as seasons change through year.' (British Film Catalogue)

Starring: René Ray, Eric Findon, Robert Abel ..
Directed by: Mary Field
Release date: 1933-06-08

Hunger: The National Hunger March to Washington, 1932

0.0/10 IMDB

A document of the 1932 national hunger march on Washington produced by the Workers Film and Photo League.

Directed by: Leo Hurwitz
Release date: 1933-01-02
Best Documentary Movies of 1933 : Eat 'Em Alive

Eat 'Em Alive

0.0/10 IMDB

Animal life in the American desert is depicted with an emphasis on the battles between various combatants in the struggle to either eat or be eaten.

Starring: Harold Austin, Harold Austin ..
Directed by: Harold Austin
Release date: 1933-01-01
Best Documentary Movies of 1933 : Voodoo


0.0/10 IMDB

In 1925, during the occupation of Haiti, a U.S. Marine Corps sergeant was stationed in charge of the small island of La Gonave. He befriended the natives and was so popular that they named him King Faustin I and installed him as their ruler. He ruled the island for three years, then left and returned to make this documentary.

Starring: Faustin Wirkus, Fred Shields ..
Directed by: Faustin Wirkus
Release date: 1933-03-31
Best Documentary Movies of 1933 : Greenland Rymill 1933

Greenland Rymill 1933

0.0/10 IMDB

Film directed by John R. Rymill showing team members with their dog sledges during the 'East Greenland Expedition 1932-33'.

Directed by: John R. Rymill
Release date: 1933-01-01

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