The 10 Best Documentaries About Gentrification

Aug 10, 2023 | Best Of, Political, Social

Gentrification has been a hot-button issue for decades, and the documentary genre has long served as an investigative tool to delve into the complexities of the matter. From examining its consequences in cities across the world to highlighting how it affects everyday people, there’s no denying that documentaries about gentrification are powerful stories.



In 2001, the African-American community of Over-the-Rhine in Cincinnati was rocked by the killing of unarmed 19-year-old Timothy Thomas by a white police officer. In response to this tragedy, the city undertook a mission to make Over-the-Rhine more “safe and attractive” to prospective residents and developers.


2. America’s Gentrification Problem

America has always been a nation of immigrants, with people coming from all corners of the world seeking a better life. But recently, gentrification has become an increasingly serious issue for many American cities. Gentrification is defined as the process of renovating and improving a house or district so that it conforms to middle-class taste.


3. Gentrification

From the bustling cities to the quiet suburbs, gentrification has been a hot topic of conversation. With rising housing costs and displacement of many people, it’s important to explore how different communities are being affected by this phenomenon. The Best Documentaries about Gentrification take us on a journey from before, during and after significant changes in neighborhoods.


4. The gentrification of Amsterdam

In the Netherlands, Amsterdam is no longer just a place for tourists, expats and laptop nomads. The city’s population is rapidly growing as it expands to meet its goal of 1 million inhabitants within the next 15 years. This growth brings with it gentrification – the process whereby higher-income people move into an area and cause rent prices to rise beyond what locals can afford.



Hackney Wick, East London, UK is the subject of THE WICK documentary. It portrays a vibrant creative community and the challenges it faces in times of grand scale gentrification. Follow an inspiring cast of characters who are determined to make their mark on a rapidly changing area.


6. The Black Beverly Hills

From the mid 60’s to today, what was once a predominantly white neighborhood in Los Angeles has transformed into the “Black Beverly Hills” of the world. With successful black celebrities, lawyers, entrepreneurs, and doctors moving in during the 70s, Ladera Heights, View Park Winsor Hills, and Baldwin Hills have become some of the most affluent black neighborhoods in America.


7. Tourist hotspot and realtors‘ dream

Tel Aviv is one of the most expensive cities on Earth, behind only Singapore and New York. But in the district of Jaffa, life has changed drastically over recent years. What was once a bustling port city filled with ruins after the 1947-1949 Palestine war has become a hotspot for realtors and tourists alike.


8. The Gentrification of Francisville Philadelphia

Ruby Sanders was no stranger to hardship. Having escaped the loansharks of South Carolina plantations with her husband and seven children, Ruby decided to make a new start in Philadelphia in the 1960s. But after 50 years living there, she was suddenly evicted from her home due to gentrification in her neighborhood.


9. What we don’t understand about gentrification

Gentrification is an issue that can often become oversimplified and misunderstood. Urban planning scholar Stacey Sutton paints a more vivid picture of the consequences of gentrification at her enlightening talks. Through her expertise, we are able to gain insight into its true impact on communities and why it’s not always the positive change that some may think it is.


10. The Gentrification Of Brick Lane

My journey in exploring the history of Brick Lane is an eye-opening experience. From its humble beginnings as a hub for traditional and multicultural trade, to the rapid gentrification that has changed it into one of London’s trendiest neighbourhoods, I am learning so much about how this area has developed over time.

Read On – Our Latest Top Documentaries Lists

David B