The 6 Best Documentaries About Gerald Ford

Nov 29, 2023 | Best Of, History, Political

It’s been over 40 years since Gerald Ford served as the 38th President of the United States. Despite being in office for only two and a half years, Ford made significant contributions to American politics and history. From his role in healing the nation after the resignation of Nixon to his controversial decision to pardon Nixon, there is no shortage of fascinating stories surrounding Ford’s presidency. To fully understand and appreciate the life and legacy of Gerald Ford, one must turn to documentaries. These films provide a deep dive into his personal and political life, shedding light on the man behind the presidential title. Here are the 6 best documentaries about Gerald Ford that every history buff should watch.

1. Gerald Ford Interview – His Greatest Achievement and Disappointment in Office

Gerald Ford, the 38th President of the United States, is often remembered for his brief tenure in office and for being the only American president to never be elected as either Vice President or President. However, there’s much more to this remarkable man than meets the eye. In this documentary interview, we dive into Ford’s life and discover his greatest achievement and disappointment during his time in office. Born in Nebraska in 1913, Gerald Ford was raised by a single mother and went on to become one of the most influential political leaders in US history. He was respected for his integrity, honesty, and leadership skills, which ultimately led him to be appointed as Vice President under Richard Nixon.



In 1975, President Gerald Ford became the target of an assassination attempt. This shocking and harrowing event was captured in the documentary “The Assassination Attempt of Gerald Ford.” The film delves into the details of that fateful day and sheds light on the events leading up to it. Ford’s presidency came at a tumultuous time in American history. Just two years prior, the nation was rocked by the Watergate scandal and President Nixon’s resignation. Ford, who had been appointed as Vice President, suddenly found himself thrust into the role of Commander-in-Chief. But while Ford may have seemed like an unlikely target for an assassination attempt, the film reveals that he had already received multiple death threats during his short time in office.


3. Gerald Ford Documentary

Gerald Ford was a man of many accomplishments, and his life has been documented in several fascinating documentaries. From his early days as a college football star to becoming the 38th President of the United States, each film offers a unique perspective on this remarkable leader. One such documentary is “A Time to Heal: The Presidency of Gerald R. Ford.” This film delves into Ford’s unexpected rise to power after the Watergate scandal and his efforts to rebuild trust in the presidency during a tumultuous time in American history. The film features interviews with Ford himself, as well as those who were closest to him during his presidency. Another notable documentary is “Gerald R. Ford: Healing the Presidency.


4. Time and Chance – Gerald R. Ford’s Appointment with History

Time and Chance is a gripping documentary that provides an in-depth look into the life of Gerald R. Ford, one of the most influential leaders in American history. Through rare footage and interviews with those closest to him, this film delves into the personal and political journey of Ford, from his childhood in Grand Rapids, Michigan to becoming the 38th President of the United States. The documentary captures Ford’s remarkable rise to power, from his humble beginnings as a young boy raised by a single mother, to becoming the only person in history to serve as both Vice President and President without being elected. It explores how Ford was thrust into the spotlight during one of the most tumultuous times in American politics, following the resignation of President Nixon and facing numerous challenges during his short time in office. But Time and Chance is more than just a political documentary. It also delves into the personal side of Ford, giving viewers a glimpse into his marriage to Betty Ford and their enduring love story that spanned over five decades. It touches upon his passion for athletics, particularly football, and how it shaped his character and leadership style.


5. A Time to Heal – Gerald Ford’s America

Step back in time and immerse yourself in the life and legacy of one of America’s most influential leaders – President Gerald R. Ford. This compelling documentary takes you on a journey through Ford’s remarkable journey, from his humble beginnings in Grand Rapids to becoming the 38th President of the United States. As you walk through the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum, prepare to be captivated by the stories and personal anecdotes that paint a vivid picture of Ford’s character and leadership. Discover his unwavering dedication to public service, his unwavering commitment to equality, and his unwavering strength in times of crisis. Through rare footage and mesmerizing interviews with those closest to him, this film sheds light on the man behind the political figure. You’ll gain a deeper understanding of Ford’s role in shaping America’s history, from his controversial pardoning of Richard Nixon to his work towards peace and reconciliation during the Cold War.


6. Gerald Ford – America’s Only Unelected President

Gerald Rudolph Ford Jr. was an American politician who became the 38th President of the United States, serving from 1974 to 1977. He is known for being the only president in U.S. history to have never been elected as either President or Vice-President. Born and raised in Nebraska, Ford attended the University of Michigan where he excelled in athletics and later graduated with a law degree. He then pursued a career as a politician, serving in the House of Representatives for 25 years before being appointed Vice-President under Richard Nixon. However, Ford’s political journey took an unprecedented turn when he suddenly became President upon Nixon’s resignation due to the Watergate scandal.



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David B