18 Uplifting Documentaries That Will Leave You With A Smile On Your Face!

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Especially for the last couple of years, documentaries are bombarding us with dystopian stories that include possible outcomes of AIs being “too intelligent,” or extreme surveillance by governments over people that make them go paranoid. This list is quite different: Buzzfeed asked its community to tell them their favorite “uplifting” documentaries. Here are the results!

Storylines were taken from IMDb.

Source: https://www.buzzfeed.com/jamiejones/upli...

1. Twinsters (2015)

Adopted from South Korea, raised on different continents & connected through social media, Samantha & Anaïs believe that they are twin sisters separated at birth.

2. Iris (2014)

A documentary about fashion icon Iris Apfel from legendary documentary filmmaker Albert Maysles.

3. A Hot Dog Program (1999)

Filmmaker Rick Sebak takes his cameras across the country in search of the various hot dogs people enjoy. We see the Super Duper Hot Dog stand and its variety of toppings and sauces. There is an in-depth study of the Chicago-area hot dog stands, in particular, the Superdawg. Other hot dog establishments in all of their shapes, forms, and gimmicks (think the Varsity restaurant's "WhaddyahaveWhaddyahaveWhaddyahave?") Then we come to the New York City area and Gray's Papaya and Nathan's Hot Dogs, where each has their own method of cooking and serving their franks. The annual Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Contest is also featured.

4. Promises (2001)

Several Jewish and Palestinian children are followed for three years and put in touch with each other, in this alternative look at the Jewish-Palestinian conflict. The three filmmakers followed a group of seven local children between 1995 and 1998. They all have a totally different background. These seven children tell their own story about growing up in Jerusalem. Through this portrait of their generation, we see how deep rooted and almost insoluble the problems of the Middle East have become. When the protagonists speak out in an epilogue a couple of years later, it becomes apparent that all have lost their childlike innocence.

5. I Know That Voice (2013)

Several voice actors discuss their art and their careers.

6. Second Chance Dogs (2016)

Second Chance Dogs tells the story of one facility dedicated to giving abused and neglected animals another chance.

7. The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters (2007)

In the early 1980s, legendary Billy Mitchell set a Donkey Kong record that stood for almost 25 years. This documentary follows the assault on the record by Steve Wiebe, an earnest teacher from Washington who took up the game while unemployed. The top scores are monitored by a cadre of players and fans associated with Walter Day, an Iowan who runs Funspot, an annual tournament. Wiebe breaks Mitchell's record in public at Funspot, and Mitchell promptly mails a controversial videotape of himself setting a new record. So Wiebe travels to Florida hoping Mitchell will face him for the 2007 Guinness World Records. Will the mind-game-playing Mitchell engage; who will end up holding the record?

8. The Topp Twins: Untouchable Girls (2009)

If you see only one documentary about lesbian, country-singing, comedian twins from New Zealand, make this the one! Jools and Linda Topp have become phenomenally successful among the Kiwis for the sprightly combination of comical characters and catchy ditties, and this exuberant film captures the joy they bring both to their performance and to their daily lives. If you aren't already a Topp Twins fan, you'll be one by the end of this delightful doc.

9. The Resurrection of Jake the Snake (2015)

A fallen professional wrestling superstar battles his past demons in a struggle to reclaim his life and the family that has given up on him.

10. Craigslist Joe

In a time when America's economy was crumbling and sense of community was in question, one guy left everything behind to see if he could survive solely on the support and goodwill of the 21st century's new town square: Craigslist.

11. Jiro Dreams of Sushi (2011)

In the basement of a Tokyo office building, 85-year-old sushi master Jiro Ono works tirelessly in his world renowned restaurant, Sukiyabashi Jiro. As his son Yoshikazu faces the pressures of stepping into his father's shoes and taking over the legendary restaurant, Jiro relentlessly pursues his lifelong quest to create the perfect piece of sushi.

12. Babies (2010)

A look at one year in the life of four babies from around the world, from Mongolia to Namibia to San Francisco to Tokyo.

13. Happy (2011)

Happy takes us on a journey from the swamps of Louisiana to the slums of Kolkata in search of what really makes people happy. Combining real-life stories of people from around the world and powerful interviews with the leading scientists in happiness research, HAPPY explores the secrets behind our most valued emotion.

14. I Am (2010)

Director Tom Shadyac speaks with intellectual and spiritual leaders about what's wrong with our world and how we can improve both it and the way we live in it.

15. Living on One Dollar (2013)

An award-winning film that has been called "A Must Watch" by Nobel Laureate Muhammad Yunus and Director of The Hunger Games, Gary Ross. Living on One Dollar follows the journey of four friends as they set out to live on just $1 a day for two months in rural Guatemala. They battle hunger, parasites, and extreme financial stress as they attempt to survive life on the edge. An unimaginable reality for most young Americans, the challenges they face are real and plague over 1.1 billion people around the world. While the friends quickly learn there are no easy answers, the generosity and strength of Rosa, a 20-year-old woman, and Chino, a 12-year-old boy, give them resilient hope that there are effective ways to make a difference.

16. Meru (2015)

Three elite climbers struggle to find their way through obsession and loss as they attempt to climb Mount Meru, one of the most coveted prizes in the high stakes game of Himalayan big wall climbing.

17. He Named Me Malala (2015)

A look at the events leading up to the Taliban's attack on Pakistani schoolgirl, Malala Yousafzai, for speaking out on girls' education followed by the aftermath, including her speech to the United Nations.

18. Maidentrip (2013)

14-year-old Laura Dekker sets out on a two-year voyage in pursuit of her dream to become the youngest person ever to sail around the world alone.

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