Eight Of the Most Disturbing Documentaries Ever Made

disturbing documentaries

March 27, 2024

Written by Kelli Marchman McNeely

Kelli Marchman McNeely is the owner of HorrorFuel.com. She is an Executive Producer of "13 Slays Till Christmas" which is out on Digital and DVD and now streaming on Tubi. She has several other films in the works. Kelli is an animal lover and a true horror addict since the age of 9 when she saw Friday the 13th. Email: horrorfuelinfo@gmail.com

Do you want to explore the darker side of life? We’ve got a list of documentaries that expose the darkness of the human soul, films that will leave you with chills and heartbreak and will leave you questioning humanity’s capacity for horrific true horror.

Jonestown: The Life and Death of Peoples Temple

This 2006 film explores the lives and deaths of over 900 people who committed suicide in a tragic event at the command of preacher Jim Jones. Director Stanley Nelson captures the tragedy and what led to the event.

Where to Watch: Apple TV



The Act of Killing

Joshua Oppenheimer’s disturbing documentary centers on the life of a former Indonesian Death Squad leader,  Anwar Congo, who committed both murder and mass killings. What makes this doc so unnerving is that Congo recreates some of his most infamous murders on film.

Where to Watch: Plex, Peacock, and Vudu



Night and Fog

Filmed in 1956, Night and Fog delves into the atrocities committed by the Nazis during WWII. It exposes the horrors of the “Final Solution” and the death camps where over six million Jews were murdered.

Where to Watch: Max


Nazi documentary



Cropsey, released in 2009, Cropsey, centers on Andre Rand, an employee of the Willowbrook State School, an infamous mental asylum. Rand was arrested for the murder of several children. The doc includes footage from the Geraldo Rivera report that exposes the asylum’s cruelty. Warning: viewer discretion is advised.

Where to Watch: Roku, Tubi




Don’t F**k with Cats

In 2019 a true crime docuseries, Don’t F**k with Cats: Hunting an Internet Killer, premiered on Netflix, raising controversy due to its disturbing content. Directed by Mark Lewis, the true crime series sees an amateur investigation into a string of animal cruelty crimes committed by Canadian porn star Luka Magnotta. Magnotta’s crimes also included the murder of Chinese exchange student Jun Lin. The series quickly went viral and left most viewers furious and disgusted. Watch it at your own risk.

Where to Watch: Netflix



Ailean Warnos: The Selling of a Serial Killer

Warnos was a sex worker and serial killer who killed seven men. Featuring chilling, uncensored interviews with the unhinged killer, the doc explores her crimes and defense and the question of whether she was actually mentally ill.

Where to Watch: Apple TV



Willowbrook: The Last Disgrace

This documentary will likely be the most disturbing film that you will ever watch. It follows the talk show host Geraldo Rivera, who documents the horrors and abuse that happened within the walls of the asylum, which at times held over 5,000 patients, many of whom were profoundly mentally ill children. We see scenes of children lying in their own filth, ignored and mostly untreated, as they experience heartbreaking suffering at the hands of those tasked with their care. The documentary led to changes in policies of institutions like Willowbrook, which John F. Kennedy publically condemned. Consider this your warning: this documentary is soul-crushing. Viewer discretion advised: unnerving footage, nudity.

Where to Watch: Free on YouTube





This 2005 documentary explores mankind’s relationship with pets, food, fashion, and cruel scientific research. Filmed over six years, Shaun Monson’s film uses narration, hidden camera footage, and more to explore mankind’s brutality and cruelty toward animals. This documentary is not for those who have a soft heart. It’s brutal and bloody. Due to its content, the doc is not available on any streaming or VOD service, making it one of the most disturbing documentaries ever made.

Where to watch:?


Earthlings doc

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