For as long as humanity has been roaming the Earth, we have looked up to the stars and wondered what could possibly exist up in space. After many beliefs and theories over the years, we have reached an age of unprecedented knowledge of the cosmos. With the advent of television, movies, and streaming services, astronomers have been able to share their mind-blowing knowledge easier than ever.
Regardless of whether the viewer can truly grasp the incredibly complicated scientific underpinnings of certain concepts, it is always interesting to watch an informative documentary about space. Whether it is about space travel, speculating on alien life or the physics of black holes, there is likely to be something for everyone in this genre. Here we will explore the best space documentaries streaming right now that will not only blow, but also open your mind.
10. Beyond the curve, 2018
Beyond the Curve is a documentary film that explores the community of people who believe that the Earth is flat. Still. The film looks at the evidence presented by flat Earthers, which disregards current science. Astronauts explain the concept of a spherical Earth and these are put up against interviews from the flat Earth community. It’s almost humorous in its display. This documentary is fascinating for its social and psychological implications of flat Earth theory and how strong will lead people to clutch onto their own ideas instead of documented evidence.
9. Alien Worlds – 2020
This four part documentary mini series takes a more speculative look at what life may be like on other exoplanets. Using CGI visuals, each episode looks at a different planet and conceptualizes alien creatures based on the conditions of the surface, oceans, and atmosphere. This is done by applying the knowledge we have established about life on Earth, expanding these principles to create a very entertaining look at what life could be like on other worlds.
IMDb score – 6.5
8. Black Holes: The Edge of All We Know – 2020
Black holes are a mysterious and terrifying entity that has been speculated about by scientists for decades. When the Event Horizon telescope captured the first ever picture of a black hole, billions of people got a glimpse of this phenomenon for the first time ever. The documentary follows teams of scientists around the world, including Stephen Hawking, as they work together to establish Event Horizon. Exploring humanity’s quest for knowledge and the implications of discovery, this documentary is absolutely fascinating.
IMDb score – 6.6
7. The Last Man on the Moon – 2014
One of the best space documentaries streaming right now is The Last Man On The Moon. It follows the story of Gene Cernan who was the last man to step off of the moon in 1972. When he walked on the surface, he left his own footprints as well as his daughter’s initials in the dust. Sharing his moving story, it gives a new perspective on space exploration, love, and loss.
IMDb score – 7.4
6. Mission Control: The Unsung Heroes of Apollo – 2017
This Apollo 11 documentary shines a light on some of the staff behind the famous mission. Centered around the team who worked in mission control, it explores their backgrounds and how they came to be working at NASA during economic hardships and global conflict. It serves as an inspiring tale that shows that with enough passion, you can achieve your goals no matter what your circumstances are.
IMDb score – 7.5
5. IMAX: Hubble – 2010
Narrated by the recognizable voice of Leonardo DiCaprio, IMAX: Hubble follows a group of astronauts who embark on a mission to repair the Hubble space telescope. It showcases the extraordinary beauty of Earth whilst also displaying the dangers of their work. With fantastic visuals, excellent music, and plenty of tension, this is not a documentary you should miss.
IMDb score – 7.6
4. Good Night Oppy – 2022
In a surprisingly touching documentary, Good Night Oppy follows the development, deployment, and demise of the Opportunity Mars rover. Showcasing the incredible engineering work that went into the project and the team of people responsible for operating it across its 15 year lifespan, it becomes quite emotional.
IMDb score – 7.7
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3. Apollo 11 – 2019
In this eye opening documentary, we get a glimpse at the inner workings of NASA’s most iconic mission, Apollo 11. Told through never before seen footage alongside audio recordings, it follows the famous astronauts Neil Armstring, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins embarking on the historic mission. We have all read about this mission and seen some of the classic footage, but this deep dive into one of humanity’s greatest ever achievements is definitely worth your time. It’s unique from the other Apollo 11 documentaries listed here because of its focus on the astronauts.
IMDb score – 8.1
2. The Planets – 2019
Another prominent figure in the field of astronomy is professor Brian Cox. This documentary series focuses on the planets within our solar system, exploring their origins and how they came to be. It looks at the conditions on their surfaces as well as their atmospheric conditions. All of this is presented through some groundbreaking CGI visuals and set to a dramatic score, which will immerse you into the profoundness of space.
IMDb score – 9.1
1. Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey – 2014
Neil deGrasse Tyson has become one of the most prominent individuals in the scientific field and his unique, passionate delivery of space knowledge has captivated millions of people around the world. In 2014, a documentary series narrated by the famous astrophysicist was released with 13 magnificent episodes. Honing in on topics like galaxies, history of astronomy, other planets and much more, it is a captivating watch.
IMDb score – 9.3
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Whether you’re an astrophile or simply looking to learn more about space, the planets, and what we currently know, these documentaries will provide real, factual insight into our universe. Many of them are available for free or with common subscriptions like Prime Video, so you can open your mind and explore space from the comfort of your own couch. One of the most fascinating aspects of astronomy is that the information can change very quickly with new discoveries. As of 2023, these are the best space documentaries streaming right now and we know they will capture your interest.