Most Popular Social Activism Movies and TV Shows

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1. Akira (1988)

R | 124 min | Animation, Action, Drama

8.1
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

A secret military project endangers Neo-Tokyo when it turns a biker gang member into a rampaging psychic psychopath who can only be stopped by two teenagers and a group of psychics.

Director: Katsuhiro Ôtomo | Stars: Mitsuo Iwata, Nozomu Sasaki, Mami Koyama, Tesshô Genda

Votes: 146,629 | Gross: $0.55M

2. Born on the Fourth of July (1989)

R | 145 min | Biography, Drama, War

7.2
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
75 Metascore

The biography of Ron Kovic. Paralyzed in the Vietnam war, he becomes an anti-war and pro-human rights political activist after feeling betrayed by the country he fought for.

Director: Oliver Stone | Stars: Tom Cruise, Bryan Larkin, Raymond J. Barry, Caroline Kava

Votes: 91,570 | Gross: $70.00M

3. Patriot Act with Hasan Minhaj (2018– )

25 min | Comedy, News, Talk-Show

8.2
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

In this weekly show, the former Daily Show correspondent Hasan Minhaj brings his unique comedic voice and storytelling skill to explore the larger grim trends shaping our fragmented world.

Stars: Hasan Minhaj, Joyelle Johnson, Arnab Goswami, Maeve Higgins

Votes: 4,136

4. Two Weeks Notice (2002)

PG-13 | 101 min | Comedy, Romance

6.1
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  
42 Metascore

A lawyer decides that she's used too much like a nanny by her boss, so she walks out on him.

Director: Marc Lawrence | Stars: Sandra Bullock, Hugh Grant, Alicia Witt, Dana Ivey

Votes: 100,128 | Gross: $93.35M

5. Milk (I) (2008)

R | 128 min | Biography, Drama

7.5
Rate this
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
84 Metascore

The story of Harvey Milk, and his struggles as an American gay activist who fought for gay rights and became California's first openly gay elected official.

Director: Gus Van Sant | Stars: Sean Penn, Josh Brolin, Emile Hirsch, Diego Luna

Votes: 157,944 | Gross: $31.84M

6. The Constant Gardener (2005)

R | 129 min | Drama, Mystery, Romance

7.4
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
82 Metascore

A widower is determined to get to the bottom of a potentially explosive secret involving his wife's murder, big business, and corporate corruption.

Director: Fernando Meirelles | Stars: Ralph Fiennes, Rachel Weisz, Danny Huston, Hubert Koundé

Votes: 127,027 | Gross: $33.58M

7. The Hurricane (1999)

R | 146 min | Biography, Drama, Sport

7.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
74 Metascore

The story of Rubin "Hurricane" Carter, a boxer wrongly imprisoned for murder, and the people who aided in his fight to prove his innocence.

Director: Norman Jewison | Stars: Denzel Washington, Vicellous Shannon, Deborah Kara Unger, Liev Schreiber

Votes: 87,444 | Gross: $50.67M

8. Dave (1993)

PG-13 | 110 min | Comedy, Romance

6.8
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
76 Metascore

To avoid a potentially explosive scandal when the U.S. President goes into a coma, an affable temp agency owner with an uncanny resemblance is put in his place.

Director: Ivan Reitman | Stars: Kevin Kline, Sigourney Weaver, Frank Langella, Kevin Dunn

Votes: 46,542 | Gross: $63.27M

9. Waking the Dead (2000)

R | 105 min | Drama, Mystery, Romance

6.5
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
59 Metascore

A congressional candidate questions his sanity after seeing the love of his life, presumed dead, suddenly emerge.

Director: Keith Gordon | Stars: Billy Crudup, Bill Haugland, Nelson Landrieu, Ivonne Coll

Votes: 6,521 | Gross: $0.33M

10. Summertime (2015)

Not Rated | 105 min | Drama, Romance

6.7
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
72 Metascore

There was little chance, in the year 1971, that Carole, a Paris Spanish teacher and feminist militant, would ever meet Delphine, the daughter of a couple of Limousin farmers. But they did ... See full summary »

Director: Catherine Corsini | Stars: Cécile de France, Izïa Higelin, Noémie Lvovsky, Jean-Henri Compère

Votes: 3,278 | Gross: $0.04M

11. Woodstock (1970)

R | 184 min | Documentary, History, Music

8.2
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

The film chronicle of the legendary 1969 music festival.

Director: Michael Wadleigh | Stars: Joan Baez, Richie Havens, Roger Daltrey, Joe Cocker

Votes: 15,147 | Gross: $50.00M

12. Hi, Mom! (1970)

R | 87 min | Comedy, Drama

6.2
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A Vietnam vet moves into an apartment and views in other people's windows across the street, meets one of the women, and discovers black theater.

Director: Brian De Palma | Stars: Robert De Niro, Allen Garfield, Lara Parker, Charles Durning

Votes: 3,933

13. Amos & Andrew (1993)

PG-13 | 96 min | Comedy, Crime

5.7
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

A Pulitzer prize writer buys a cabin. The neighbors get suspicious when a stranger "breaks in". They see a black man and call the police, who start shooting at him. The sheriff tries a cover-up involving a white petty crook. Bad idea.

Director: E. Max Frye | Stars: Nicolas Cage, Samuel L. Jackson, Michael Lerner, Margaret Colin

Votes: 8,143 | Gross: $9.75M

14. The Long Walk Home (1990)

PG | 97 min | Drama, History

7.3
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
73 Metascore

Two women, black and white, in 1955 Montgomery Alabama, must decide what they are going to do in response to the famous bus boycott lead by Martin Luther King.

Director: Richard Pearce | Stars: Sissy Spacek, Whoopi Goldberg, Dwight Schultz, Ving Rhames

Votes: 3,006 | Gross: $4.80M

15. Welcome (I) (2009)

Not Rated | 110 min | Drama

7.5
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
61 Metascore

Bilal is 17 years old, a Kurdish boy from Iraq. He sets off on an adventure-filled journey across Europe. He wants to get to England to see his love who lives there. Bilal finally reaches ... See full summary »

Director: Philippe Lioret | Stars: Vincent Lindon, Firat Ayverdi, Audrey Dana, Derya Ayverdi

Votes: 6,871 | Gross: $0.01M

16. Waste Land (2010)

Not Rated | 99 min | Documentary

7.9
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
78 Metascore

On the outskirts of Rio de Janeiro is Jardim Gramacho, the world's largest landfill, where men and women sift through garbage for a living. Artist Vik Muniz produces portraits of the workers and learns about their lives.

Directors: Lucy Walker, Karen Harley, João Jardim | Star: Vik Muniz

Votes: 8,064 | Gross: $0.19M

17. Aarakshan (2011)

164 min | Drama

6.2
Rate this
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A decision by India's supreme court tests a man's friendships and loyalty.

Director: Prakash Jha | Stars: Amitabh Bachchan, Saif Ali Khan, Manoj Bajpayee, Deepika Padukone

Votes: 4,631 | Gross: $0.34M

18. Man of Marble (1977)

160 min | Drama

7.8
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

In 1976, a young woman in Krakow is making her diploma film, looking behind the scenes at the life of a 1950s bricklayer, Birkut, who was briefly a proletariat hero, at how that heroism was... See full summary »

Director: Andrzej Wajda | Stars: Krystyna Janda, Jerzy Radziwilowicz, Tadeusz Lomnicki, Jacek Lomnicki

Votes: 3,570

19. I'm Not Rappaport (1996)

PG-13 | 135 min | Comedy

6.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Old Nat Moyer is a talker, a philosopher, and a troublemaker with a fanciful imagination. His companion is Midge Carter, who is half-blind, but still the super of an apartment house. When ... See full summary »

Director: Herb Gardner | Stars: Walter Matthau, Ossie Davis, Amy Irving, Craig T. Nelson

Votes: 1,477 | Gross: $0.22M

20. Jeanne and the Perfect Guy (1998)

Unrated | 105 min | Drama, Musical, Romance

6.5
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Jeanne has an appetite for love that can never be satisfied. Lovers at every corner of her life she is still in search of that "one". When a impromptu tryst on the subway with Olivier gives... See full summary »

Directors: Olivier Ducastel, Jacques Martineau | Stars: Virginie Ledoyen, Mathieu Demy, Jacques Bonnaffé, Valérie Bonneton

Votes: 679 | Gross: $0.01M

21. How to Survive a Plague (2012)

Not Rated | 110 min | Documentary, History, News

7.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
86 Metascore

The story of two coalitions -- ACT UP and TAG (Treatment Action Group) -- whose activism and innovation turned AIDS from a death sentence into a manageable condition.

Director: David France | Stars: Peter Staley, Larry Kramer, Iris Long, Bob Rafsky

Votes: 3,562 | Gross: $0.13M

22. The Rosa Parks Story (2002 TV Movie)

97 min | Biography, Drama

7.4
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

A seamstress recalls events leading to her act of peaceful defiance that prompted the 1955 bus boycott in Montgomery, Alabama.

Director: Julie Dash | Stars: Angela Bassett, Peter Francis James, Tonea Stewart, Von Coulter

Votes: 688

23. Eden of the East (2009)

TV-MA | 23 min | Animation, Action, Comedy

7.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

On November 22, 2010 ten missiles strike Japan. However, this unprecedented terrorist act, later to be called as "Careless Monday," does not result in any apparent victims, and is soon ... See full summary »

Stars: Ryohei Kimura, Saori Hayami, Leah Clark, Jason Liebrecht

Votes: 3,187

24. The Big One (1997)

PG-13 | 91 min | Documentary, Comedy, Crime

7.0
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

On his book tour, Michael Moore exposes more wrongdoing by greedy big businesses and callous politicians around America.

Director: Michael Moore | Stars: Michael Moore, Elaine Bly, Dan Burns, Chip Carter

Votes: 7,541 | Gross: $0.72M

25. La Commune (Paris, 1871) (2000)

345 min | Drama, History, War

8.0
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  
90 Metascore

In this war drama blurring the lines between documentary and fiction, the working class and the bourgeoisie of 19th century Paris are interviewed and covered on television, before and during a tragic workers' class revolt.

Director: Peter Watkins | Stars: Eliane Annie Adalto, Pierre Barbieux, Bernard Bombeau, Maylis Bouffartigue

Votes: 931

26. Boycott (2001 TV Movie)

PG | 118 min | Drama

7.2
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Black Americans boycott the public buses during the 1950s civil rights movement.

Director: Clark Johnson | Stars: Jeffrey Wright, Terrence Howard, CCH Pounder, Carmen Ejogo

Votes: 766

27. The Terry Fox Story (1983 TV Movie)

96 min | Biography, Drama, Sport

7.1
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

The true story about the Canadian cancer amputee hero who decided to run across Canada on only one leg to raise money for cancer research.

Director: Ralph L. Thomas | Stars: Eric Fryer, Robert Duvall, Chris Makepeace, Rosalind Chao

Votes: 479

28. Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry (2012)

R | 91 min | Documentary

7.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
81 Metascore

A documentary that chronicles artist and activist Ai Weiwei as he prepares for a series of exhibitions and gets into an increasing number of clashes with the Chinese government.

Director: Alison Klayman | Stars: Weiwei Ai, Dan Ai, Lao Ai, Lee Ambrozy

Votes: 4,015 | Gross: $0.53M

29. Life Support (2007 TV Movie)

TV-MA | 87 min | Drama

6.8
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

The true-life story of a mother who overcame an addiction to crack and became a positive role model and an AIDS activist in the black community.

Director: Nelson George | Stars: Queen Latifah, Vianca Mercedes, Anna Deavere Smith, Wendell Pierce

Votes: 1,059

30. Stonewall (1995)

R | 99 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

7.0
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

A group of homosexual people try to live with dignity and self-respect while events build to the opening battle in the major gay rights movement.

Director: Nigel Finch | Stars: Guillermo Díaz, Frederick Weller, Brendan Corbalis, Duane Boutte

Votes: 1,475 | Gross: $0.62M

31. Drop Squad (1994)

R | 86 min | Drama

4.8
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.8/10 X  

Political satire about an underground militant group that kidnaps African-Americans who have sold out their race. The story follows as the group led Curtis-Hall and Rhames kidnaps an ... See full summary »

Director: David C. Johnson | Stars: Eriq La Salle, Vondie Curtis-Hall, Ving Rhames, Kasi Lemmons

Votes: 498 | Gross: $0.73M

32. Eyes on the Prize (1987–1990)

TV-PG | 360 min | Documentary, History

9.1
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 9.1/10 X  

A documentary about the American Civil Rights Movement from 1952 to 1965.

Stars: Julian Bond, Unita Blackwell, James Hicks, Burke Marshall

Votes: 457

33. SexTV (1998–2008)

30 min | Documentary

6.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A documentary television series which explores human sexuality.

Stars: Chantal Quesnelle, Carol Queen, Ziggy Lorenc, Tristan Taormino

Votes: 92

34. The Awful Truth (1999–2000)

30 min | Documentary

6.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Activist film director Michael Moore hosts a show where he continues his crusade to expose wrongdoing by the high and mighty.

Stars: Michael Moore, Jay Martel, Gideon Evans, Karen Duffy

Votes: 2,016

35. Stopping Traffic (2017)

TV-14 | 79 min | Documentary, Crime

6.5
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Stopping Traffic explores the pervasive reach of sex trafficking, especially of children in the U.S. and worldwide. Through commentary by victims and activists and investigations into ... See full summary »

Director: Sadhvi Siddhali Shree | Stars: Susanne Dietzel, Carolina Douthit, Cecilia Flores-Oebanda, Mario Garfias

Votes: 93

36. Grass (1999)

R | 80 min | Documentary, History

7.2
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
64 Metascore

The history of the American government's war on marijuana in the 20th century.

Director: Ron Mann | Stars: Woody Harrelson, Harry J. Anslinger, George Bush, Cab Calloway

Votes: 3,401 | Gross: $0.31M

37. TV Nation (1994–1995)

60 min | Documentary, Comedy, News

6.0
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

Michael Moore presents a humorous news-magazine that focuses primarily on wrongdoing by big business, privileged society and right-wing politicians.

Stars: Michael Moore, Bruce Brown, Louis Theroux, Karen Duffy

Votes: 541

38. Prairie Giant: The Tommy Douglas Story (2006– )

Biography, Drama

8.1
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

A mini-series based on the work of Canadian political icon Tommy Douglas.

Stars: Kristin Booth, George Alexander, Ryland Alexander, Kent Allen

Votes: 184

39. Making the Boys (2011)

Not Rated | 90 min | Documentary, Biography, Romance

6.9
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  
71 Metascore

On the eve of the 40th anniversary of the Gay Rights Movement, the film explores the drama, struggle and enduring legacy of the first-ever gay play and subsequent Hollywood movie to ... See full summary »

Director: Crayton Robey | Stars: Edward Albee, Joe Allen, Matt Baney, David Carter

Votes: 474 | Gross: $0.03M

40. Crossing Arizona (2006)

Not Rated | 77 min | Documentary

8.1
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

A collection of personal accounts stemming from Arizona's illegal immigration crisis.

Directors: Dan DeVivo, Joseph Mathew

Votes: 91

41. Sing Your Song (2011)

Not Rated | 103 min | Documentary, Biography, Music

7.4
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
73 Metascore

Most people know the lasting legacy of Harry Belafonte, the entertainer. This film unearths his significant contribution to and his leadership in the civil rights movement in America and to social justice globally.

Director: Susanne Rostock | Stars: Harry Belafonte, Sidney Poitier, Marge Champion, Fran Scott Attaway

Votes: 416 | Gross: $0.05M

42. Mythic Journeys (2009)

Not Rated | 93 min | Documentary

7.0
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

An inventive fusion of documentary, story, artwork and animation. Despite the fact that myth has always existed, surprisingly few people today are aware of even the classic myths or the ... See full summary »

Directors: Steven Boe, Whitney Boe | Stars: Mark Hamill, Tim Curry, Lance Henriksen, Steven Aizenstat

Votes: 128

43. The Fabric of a Dream: The Fletcher Jones Story (2007 TV Movie)

52 min | Documentary

Rate this
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  

The story of how a shellshocked war veteran took to the road as a hawker and ended up creating a national icon.

Director: Dennis K. Smith | Stars: Wendy Hughes, Andrew S. Gilbert, Don Bridges, Ben Rogers

44. Samaritan: The Mitch Snyder Story (1986 TV Movie)

Not Rated | 96 min | Drama

6.9
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Fact-based story about Mitch Snyder (Martin Sheen), a Washington crusader for the homeless, who took their case to Congress. Working for the Community for Creative Non-violence, Snyder ... See full summary »

Director: Richard T. Heffron | Stars: Martin Sheen, Roxanne Hart, Joe Seneca, Stan Shaw

Votes: 88

45. The Butch Factor (2009)

Not Rated | 88 min | Documentary

6.0
Rate this
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A multicultural examination of modern gay male society and how masculinity is expected, defined, accepted, and expanded.

Director: Christopher Hines | Stars: Christopher Hines, Jason Hefley, H.T. Bennett, Junior Buendia

Votes: 207

46. Underground (1976)

87 min | Documentary

6.9
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

It's the mid 1970s and the Weather Underground Organization (WUO), a radical (and violent) offshoot of the Students for a Democratic Society, explains to leftist filmmakers the difficulties... See full summary »

Directors: Emile de Antonio, Mary Lampson, Haskell Wexler | Stars: Bill Ayers, Kathy Boudin, Emile de Antonio, Bernardine Dohrn

Votes: 124

47. To Be Takei (2014)

Not Rated | 94 min | Documentary, Biography

6.9
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  
66 Metascore

A look at the many roles played by eclectic actor/activist George Takei, whose wit, humor and grace have helped him to become an internationally beloved figure and Internet phenomenon with 7-million Facebook fans and counting.

Director: Jennifer M. Kroot | Stars: George Takei, Brad Takei, Walter Koenig, William Shatner

Votes: 1,422 | Gross: $0.05M

48. Garbage Dreams (2009)

79 min | Documentary

7.5
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
67 Metascore

A look at the lives of Egyptian trash collectors.

Director: Mai Iskander

Votes: 139

49. Freedom on My Mind (1994)

105 min | Documentary

7.7
Rate this
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Chronicles the Mississippi voter registration drive from 1961- 64.

Directors: Connie Field, Marilyn Mulford | Star: Ronnie Washington

Votes: 126 | Gross: $0.07M

50. The Land Beyond the Sunset (1912)

Unrated | 14 min | Short, Drama, Fantasy

6.9
Rate this
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A young boy, opressed by his mother, goes on an outing in the country with a social welfare group where he dares to dream of a land where the cares of his ordinary life fade.

Director: Harold M. Shaw | Stars: Martin Fuller, Mrs. William Bechtel, Walter Edwin, Ethel Jewett

Votes: 632



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