The 12 Best Documentaries About Death

Jul 29, 2023 | Best Of, Health

Death is inevitable, but that doesn’t mean it has to be a frightening prospect. In fact, there are some documentaries about death that can help us understand what it means for us and how we can use this knowledge to empower ourselves in life. Whether you’re looking for an interesting way to contemplate your mortality or just want something thought-provoking to watch on a rainy day, these documentaries will make you stop and think about your life. So let’s take a look at some of the best documentaries about death – they might not make death any less scary, but they’ll definitely give you something to think about!


1. Death Row: Indiana State Prison

Join veteran presenter Sir Trevor McDonald as he goes deep inside Indiana State Maximum Security Prison. He spends two weeks with the inmates and talks to them about their experience living on death row. This two-part documentary series offers a rare glimpse into one of the world’s most notorious prisons, and provides insight into what it is like for those condemned to die.


2. The Good Death

Janette has been living with Muscular Dystrophy for generations, and it’s taken a toll on her family. Now Janette is terminally ill and wants to die in a dignified way. She must explain her decision to those close to her: family members and friends before she embarks on her last journey. This documentary follows Janette as she makes the difficult but brave choice of deciding when enough is enough, choosing physician-assisted suicide so that she can have a good death surrounded by those who love her most.


3. A Certain Kind Of Death

This documentary dives deep into the mysterious process of what happens to people who die with no next of kin. It takes a look at their lives before and after death, and reveals stories that are both heartbreaking and inspiring. Unblinking yet compassionate, this film offers an intimate glimpse into those who have been forgotten by society, but not forgotten in our hearts. You’ll learn how these individuals were remembered by others while alive, as well as how they are being laid to rest even without any family members present. A Certain Kind Of Death is a must-watch for anyone interested in learning more about life’s most profound mysteries.


4. Facing Death

This 2010 documentary provides a unique glimpse into the Intensive Care Unit of one of New York’s biggest hospitals. It follows doctors and nurses as they help families make difficult decisions about end-of-life care, such as when to pull feeding and breathing tubes and whether to perform surgeries or opt for hospice care. In addition, it offers an intimate look at patients facing death who must navigate the trade-offs of modern medicine. Watch this powerful film and gain insight into life in the ICU.


5. Death and grief – The stories of a companion for the dying

Johanna Klug, a 27 year old PhD candidate and author of two non-fiction books, shares her journey as a companion for the dying. In this video, we follow Johanna as she moves between hospice work and her everyday life in Berlin. We explore how dealing with death has impacted Johanna’s outlook on life and how it has allowed her to experience more intense connections with people. We also get an inside look at outings with those mourning their deceased loved ones as well as fun times out partying with friends. This unique documentary offers insight into death and grief – The stories of a companion for the dying through the lens of Johanna Klug!


6. Last 30 Minutes Of Death Row Inmate Before Execution

Witness the last 30 minutes of an inmate on death row before their execution. This video will take you through a unique journey, as we explore the emotions and thoughts of this individual’s final moments. From reflection to regret, join us as we delve into what it means to be in those final hours of life – and how that experience differs from person to person.


7. Post Mortem

Did you know that errors by coroners and forensic pathologists can potentially lead to innocent people being accused of crimes they did not commit? In this documentary, we explore the post-mortem process and how mistakes have resulted in guilty perpetrators going free. Get an inside look at the implications of these errors as we examine real life cases where justice was not served. Don’t miss out on Post Mortem – a must watch for anyone interested in criminal investigations.


8. Beyond Death

Do you ever wonder what happens after death? Join Morgan Freeman as he dives into the religious beliefs of both ancient and modern times. Discover how different cultures view life after death in this enlightening documentary. From Christianity to Buddhism, discover what lies beyond mortality in this captivating exploration with Morgan Freeman!


9. Documentary about life after death

Do you believe in life after death? Over 90% of people on this planet have faith that there is something more than just the existence we experience in our everyday lives. In this documentary, explore how different cultures and religions around the world approach the concept of an afterlife, as well as what it means to them. Hear stories from those who have experienced a near-death situation and discover what happens when they come back to tell their tales. Witness firsthand how beliefs about life after death shape behavior and customs throughout history and today.


10. The Strange Death of Professor Shockley

Two friends were at the scene of a strange death – that of Professor Shockley in a hot tub. Only one survived to tell the tale and now, for the first time, he has spoken out. Jonathan Vigliotti reports on this mysterious case as part of his 48 Hours investigation. Find out why it took so long for answers to come as we explore what happened that fateful night and uncover secrets that have been hidden away until now.


11. Reverend Death

Meet Reverend George Exoo, a jolly man who has helped over one hundred people die. Award winning journalist Jon Ronson follows him on an incredible journey as the FBI begins to take notice of his work. While some mainstream euthanasia groups refer mentally ill patients to him, he also recruits a strange assistant with an eye for business opportunities in assisted suicide. But is what they are doing truly God’s work or have things gone too far? Find out in this extraordinary story about death and mortality!


12. Remembering Heaven

Are you curious about where we come from before we are born? Do you believe there is something beyond this world? In this amazing documentary, Sarah Hinze brings to life the remarkable accounts of parents and families who have had the opportunity to meet their unborn children’s souls. Through these stories, they present us with an inspiring look at our eternal spirits living in a realm of light and beauty before coming here on earth. Don’t miss out on this incredible journey!

Read On – Our Latest Top Documentaries Lists

David B