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The 20 Best Investigative Documentaries of All Time | Netflix9 min read

20 best investigative true crime documentaries
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The touch of reality is the best part when it comes to choosing a documentary over any fictional series. The crime and investigation adds the thrill to make that entertainment just perfect. Here are the best documentaries on Netflix that will get you lost in the shocking true crime stories. The testimonials, videos, footage, and all the real emotions surging is simply thrilling! These are the top 20 handpicked Investigative documentaries that have set high standards for the true-crime genre on OTT.

1. Don’t F**k with cats: Hunting an Internet Killer (2019)


IMDB:  8.0

Friyay’s Take: Leave everything and watch this.

This documentary is about a barbaric guy who gruesomely tortures and kills kittens. He posts his videos of this hideous act on social media. The story is about finding out who exactly is this man. The man gets hunted down by a bunch of youngsters. The investigation gets messier by the time twists get darker.

Click here to know more about this case.

Trailer: Don’t F**k with cats: Hunting an Internet Killer

2. Athlete A (2020)


IMDB:  7.7

Friyay’s Take: You gotta watch this.

It’s a shocking true story of the sexual assaults of Larry Nassar, who worked as a team doctor for athletes in the US. This brutal saga of sexual crimes has been exposed in detail by the young victims, girl athletes. This heinous story gets investigated by Indianapolis Star reporters. The confessions and narrations by victims themselves make this one, one of the best documentaries on Netflix.

Click here to know more about this case.

Trailer: Athlete A

3. Trial By Media (2020)


IMDB:  7.2

Friyay’s Take: You can’t miss this.

Court and justice have never been the story in black and white. This series is about such unbelievable and unique trials in history which have been really influenced by the media. Media can be a boon to spread the truth as well as a bane to fiddle with truth and present it to the public the way you want. The real question is how to dig the truth if these verdicts were fair or unfair due to the undue impact of media?

Trailer: Trial By Media

4. Evil Genius: The True Story of America’s Most Diabolical Bank Heist (2018)


IMDB:  7.5

Friyay’s Take: You must watch this.

It’s a compelling story of the FBI chasing, yet getting lost into the complex case of “Pizza Bomber”. The crowd of suspects drive search for truth haywire. The story of a bank heist, the death of Brian Wells, and much more gripping twists and turns making this a must-watch.

Click here to know more about this case.

Trailer: Evil Genius: The True Story of America’s Most Diabolical Bank Heist

5. American Murder: The family next door (2020)


IMDB:  7.2

Friyay’s Take: Add this to your watch list

Shanann Watts and her children are suddenly missing without a trace. It’s a true story that took place in Colorado. It’s a hunt to find this missing family where the investigation unfolds some unbelievable truths. The clues emerging out are so cruel that the world grieves.

Click here to know more about this case.

Trailer: American Murder- The family next door

6. Night stalker: The hint for a serial killer (2021)


IMDB:  8

Friyay’s Take: Leave everything and watch this.

Serial Killers getting chased down by two investigators is the crazy true story of this series. The investigative instinct in you will definitely admit it’s one of the best documentaries on Netflix due to its testimonials and the ever-challenging chase. If you want to know how one of the most cruel serial killers was attempted to catch in the history of America, this one is made to suffice your need!

Click here to know more about this case.

Trailer: Night stalker: The hint for a serial killer

7. Real Detective (2016)


IMDB: 8.1

Friyay’s Take: You can’t miss this.

In this documentary, each episode brings a new story of true murderers. The narrators are detectives of these murders. These cases have shaken life of detectives and they still think of them as nothing less than a nightmare. Almost have haunted by their existence. The chase to hunt down murderer makes it one of the best documentaries on Netflix.

Trailer: Real Detective

8. Dirty Money (2018)


IMDB: 8.1

Friyay’s Take: Add this to your watch list

The lust for money can drive some people insane. This series is about stretching those limits of insanity. Corruption and frauds get exposed at a point. But how the story unfolds itself is the reason for this being one of the best documentaries on Netflix.

Trailer: Dirty Money

9. The Innocent Man (2018)


IMDB:  7.3

Friyay’s Take: Add this to your watch list

John Grisham’s “The Innocent Man’ book sets the tone of this series. It’s about the investigation of two murder cases. Truth can’t be found easily when the fog of lies is in the air. That’s why in the genre of investigative documentaries, we suggest you don’t miss this one.

Click here to know more about this case.

Trailer: The Innocent Man

10. Making a murderer (2015)


IMDB:  8.6

Friyay’s Take: Leave everything and watch this.

The justice is in question when an innocent gets punished. But the question here arises is if he is truly innocent. Such is the situation in this reality-based battle between two men accused of crimes, and the law. The exemplary element about this series is it’s been filmed over 10 years, you can imagine the level of detailing! This one is indeed one of the best documentaries on Netflix.

Click here to know more about this case.

Trailer: The Innocent Man

11. The Confession Tapes (2017)


IMDB:  7.5

Friyay’s Take: Add this to your watch-list

Confessions drive the verdicts and verdicts set the lawfulness. But what if the sanctity of the confessions itself is in question? What if the law enforcers abuse their power to make up for missing evidences? Interrogations get real messy in such a situation. Then what’s the way to find the sheer truth? Check this out to dig that cruel secret!

Trailer: The Confession Tapes

12. The Keepers (2017)


IMDB:  8.1

Friyay’s Take: You can’t miss this.

The protagonist of the series is a nun who gets brutally murdered. this tragedy leaves many questions and secrets behind. Things are waiting for answers for five decades. It’s a detailed documentary, a spine-chilling one to admit as a reality, a drama too devastating to believe to be true.

Click here to know more about this case.

Trailer: The Keepers

13. Amanda Knox (2016)


IMDB:  6.9

Friyay’s Take: Add this to your watch-list

Amanda Knox and the people related to this case are in light while the investigation unfolds in the series. She was twice convicted and acquitted of the murder of Meridith Kercher, a girl who was part of a student exchange program. Meridith and Amanda were roommates. Amanda pleads for not being guilty. Was she a murderer or was she not? Check out this one of the best documentaries on Netflix to know about this investigation!

Click here to know more about this case.

Trailer: Amanda Knox

14. The Staircase (2018)


IMDB:  7.9

Friyay’s Take: Add this to your watch list

A very famous American writer, Michael Peterson is in question for murdering his wife. The murder leaves behind a lot of questions and fingers pointing at the novelist for being at fault. The way detailed analysis is carved out of mysteries getting unfolded will make you high on suspense!

Click here to know more about this case.

Trailer: The Staircase

15. Abducted in Plain Sight (2017)


IMDB:  6.8

Friyay’s Take: You can’t miss this.

Sweet talks can swallow your happiness before you even understand what exactly has happened. Similar is the situation in this series, which is painstakingly horrific to be true. A family falls prey to the charm of a neighbor and as a result, their young daughter gets abducted. Do check out this true story-based, one of the best documentaries on Netflix.

Click here to know more about this case.

Trailer: Abducted in Plain Sight

16. Long Shot (2017)


IMDB:  7.4

Friyay’s Take: Add this to your watch list

Juan Catalan is the protagonist of the story who has been charged with a murder crime. But he refuses to accept this charge and fights the system to prove that he is not guilty. He takes the help of the TV show, “Curb your enthusiasm ” footage to fight this battle. Will he succeed or not? Do check out!

Click here to know more about this case.

Trailer: Long Shot

17. The Disappearance of Madeleine McCann (2019)


IMDB:  6.6

Friyay’s Take: You can’t miss this.

The couple is struggling over finding their 3-year-old missing daughter, Madeleine McCann. The tragedy takes place when the whole family was enjoying their holiday and suddenly, the daughter vanishes in thin air. The twist here is that the detective makes it more complicated by doubting her parents. Media too gets too nosy. And the whole mess keeps getting too complex!

Click here to know more about this case.

Trailer: The Disappearance of Madeleine McCann

18. The Devil Next Door (2019)


IMDB: 7.6

Friyay’s Take: You can’t miss this.

Nazi camps have been notorious for their horrifying cruelty. This story is about an old Nazi camp guard who is attending his trials in Israel. His heights of inhuman acts are to the level that he was known as ‘Ivan the Terrible. The details and confessions filmed in the series will frighten you to the core. Do check it out!

Click here to know more about this case.

Trailer: The Devil Next Door

19. Conversations with a Killer: The Ted Bundy Tapes (2019)


IMDB: 7.8

Friyay’s Take: Add this to your watch-list

An infamous serial killer, Ted Bundy is the protagonist of this thrilling series. The details, confessions, and evidences along with recordings related to murders make this one of the best series on Netflix. How notorious can he get has no answer. Check out this gruesome saga of a devil!

Click here to know more about this case.

Trailer: Conversations with a Killer: The Ted Bundy Tapes

20. World’s Most Wanted (2020)


IMDB: 7.1

Friyay’s Take: Add this to your watch list

This documentary is about five of the world’s most wanted criminal minds. No matter how big the rewards were put on to get the hold of these criminals, they managed to sneak out and roam freely. These global investigations have tried all the ways possible to capture but failed miserably. This one is unquestionably one of the best series on Netflix due to the way it’s carved out of so many fine details and interesting chases.

Click here to know more about this case.

Trailer: World’s Most Wanted

Do let us know about similar mind-blowing investigative documentaries in the comment box. Also, which one is your personal favorite out of these documentaries?

Also, do check out this amazing blog about 10 mind-boggling movies and shows which deal with personality disorder.

We hope you try out our recommendation and have a fun-filled experience. Do check out friyay app for more trending discussions on movies and TV shows.


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