Best Documentary Movies of 1971

1.

North of Superior

4.0
8.9/10 IMDB

The second IMAX film made, commissioned by the Ontario Government, and produced by MultiScreen Corporation, later to become IMAX corporation. North of Superior is a Northern Ontario travelogue, and was the first short feature to be shown at the newly created Ontario government theme park, Ontario Place, in it's state of the art cinema, Cinesphere, the first permanent IMAX installation.

Directed by: Graeme Ferguson
Release date: 1971-05-22
2.

Joe Cocker - Mad Dogs & Englishmen

3.7
7.5/10 IMDB

"Joe Cocker - the Rotating Rocker - and his 42 member communal touring company Mad Dogs & Englishmen with the Master of Space and Time Leon Russell - see them perform in the pleasure palaces of America - it's a moving picture" says the classic film poster. See this spectacular rock 'n' roll tour documentary and get a dramatic visual record that captures the spirit of the hippie era with mind-blowing performances, crazy backstage footage, and spaced-out interviews. Supporting cast includes Claudia Lennear, Rita Coolidge, Sherman Jones reciting "Face on the Barroom Floor," and Canina the dog.

Starring: Joe Cocker, Leon Russell, Chris Stainton, Jim Price, Jim Gordon, Carl Radle, Sandy Konikoff, Chuck Blackwell, Bobby Torres, Jim Horn ..
Directed by: Pierre Adidge
Release date: 1971-08-27
Best Documentary Movies of 1971 : A Blank on the Map
3.

A Blank on the Map

3.4
8.1/10 IMDB

In his now well-known role of narrator of wildlife expeditions, Attenborough accompanies a government-sponsored trek into the central New Guinea highlands to make contact with a group of natives never before seen by Europeans.

Starring: David Attenborough ..
Release date: 1971-12-29
Best Documentary Movies of 1971 : Cycles South
4.

Cycles South

3.2
7.2/10 IMDB

Don Marshall follows three pals who fuel up their motorcycles in Denver and hit the great highway for the adventure of a lifetime.A road trip that takes them all the way to Panama. They don't have much cash, but these nomadic spirits still manage to get their thrills while skiing, scuba diving and watching bullfights as they make their way from the States to Central America.

Directed by: Don Marshall
Release date: 1971-05-01
5.

200 Motels

3.2
5.9/10 IMDB

"Touring makes you crazy," Frank Zappa says, explaining that the idea for this film came to him while the Mothers of Invention were touring. The story, interspersed with performances by the Mothers and the Royal Symphony Orchestra, is a tale of life on the road. The band members' main concerns are the search for groupies and the desire to get paid.

Starring: The Mothers of Invention, Ringo Starr, Theodore Bikel, Keith Moon, Frank Zappa ..
Directed by: Tony Palmer, Frank Zappa
Release date: 1971-11-10
6.

The Murder of Fred Hampton

3.1
7.4/10 IMDB

Fred Hampton was the leader of the Illinois Chapter of the Black Panther Party. This film depicts his brutal murder by the Chicago police and its subsequent investigation, but also documents his activities in organizing the Chapter, his public speeches, and the programs he founded for children during the last eighteen months of his life.

Starring: Fred Hampton, Rennie Davis, Edward Hanrahan, Don Matuson, Bobby Rush ..
Directed by: Howard Alk
Release date: 1971-01-01
Best Documentary Movies of 1971 : Basic Training
7.

Basic Training

3.1
7.4/10 IMDB

Shot during the summer of 1970 at Fort Knox, Kentucky, Frederick Wiseman’s film Basic Training focuses on a group of men going through infantry training, showing how they are turned from civilians into soldiers. As well as being a unique portrait of the US army at work, the film is also a fascinating snapshot of a time and place at a defining moment in American history.

Directed by: Frederick Wiseman
Release date: 1971-06-01
Best Documentary Movies of 1971 : Directed by John Ford
8.

Directed by John Ford

3.1
7.7/10 IMDB

A documentary about the life and films of director John Ford.

Starring: Orson Welles, Peter Bogdanovich, Henry Fonda, John Ford, James Stewart, John Wayne, Harry Carey, Jr., Clint Eastwood, Katharine Hepburn, Walter Hill ..
Directed by: Peter Bogdanovich
Release date: 1971-10-06
9.

Quick Billy

3.1
7.1/10 IMDB

A psychedelic montage of home movie footage gives way to a silent western story in this film by Bay Area avant-garde filmmaker Bruce Baillie.

Directed by: Bruce Baillie
Release date: 1971-01-28
10.

Interviews with My Lai Veterans

3.0
7.6/10 IMDB

Interviews with five former American soldiers who were present at the March 16, 1968 attack on the village of My Lai during the Vietnam War; they discuss the orders that were issued leading up to the attack, their expectations of what they would find there, and the subsequent massacre of the inhabitants and destruction of the village, as well as possible motivations for the killings and rapes which took place.

Starring: Richard Hammer ..
Directed by: Joseph Strick
Release date: 1971-02-25

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