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Documentaries, society

The Truth About…

YEAR: 2014-2015 | LENGTH: 3 parts (~56 minutes each)  |  SOURCE: BBC


Stacey Dooley discovers the seamier side of some young Brits’ favourite party destinations.


Stacey Dooley travels to Sunny Beach in Bulgaria, which is fast overtaking Magaluf and Kavos as the favourite party destination for young Brits. Stacey uncovers the consequences of a no-rules party scene, where alcohol has the lowest prices in Europe and bar crawls of up to 400 people dominate the strip. She sees what the young Bulgarians working on the resort really think of the British drinking culture and reveals some of the devastating consequences when things go too far.

Stacey investigates the easy access British tourists may have to illegal drugs and questions what the authorities are doing about it. In one of the poorest countries in Europe, Stacey visits a part of Sunny Beach many of the tourists don't get to see and spends time with some of the Roma Gypsy community who are blamed for much of the crime on the resort.

Stacey Dooley investigates a stag's last night of freedom in Prague, a no-holds-barred city that caters for a man's every whim. She meets some of the thousands of girls who are paid to entertain Prague's male visitors and reveals how they really feel about their work. She discovers how the city is littered with brothels thinly disguised as massage parlours and gentleman's clubs, and reveals how the tough competition is putting pressure on the girls to go further and further. Stacey joins the police on patrol to see the daily struggles they face to protect the tourists and mop up the trouble they cause. She also uncovers how the large groups of drunken men become easy prey to Prague's criminals, which the police are struggling to stop. Through unprecedented access, Stacey uncovers the darker side of Prague.

Every spring, two million partygoers flock to Cancun for a week or two of pure hedonism - the Mexican resort is second only to Ibiza in the party stakes for young Brits. But as Stacey Dooley discovers, behind this famous spring break hotspot there's a darker side to Cancun that the tourists rarely get to see. Stacey joins the police to see the daily struggle they face to protect the tourists and mop up the trouble they cause. She also spends time with the medics responsible for dealing with the casualties when things go wrong. Investigating what's hiding behind the glossy resorts and brightly lit megaclubs, Stacey finds out why Mexico's military marines and armed police patrol them, and reveals what life is really like for the thousands of Mexican hotel workers who cater to the holidaymakers.

Documentaries, medicine

Toxic Beauty

YEAR: 2019 | LENGTH: 1 part (90 minutes)  |  SOURCE: TOXYBEAUTY


Toxic Beauty is a documentary feature film with exclusive access to scientists, lawyers, advocates, regulators, politicians, a dynamic whistle blower, survivors and women who have lost their lives. It follows the class action lawsuit against J&J and the plaintiffs, personal stories of women fighting for justice in a race against time with this deadly disease. Woven throughout the film is a human experiment. We document, as Boston University medical student, Mymy Nguyen, measures her chemical body burden from over 27 products. Scientists monitor her shocking results.In the end, the film meets the companies and people who offer solutions and optimism for safer, toxicant free cosmetics.

Documentaries, society

Mums Selling Their Kids for Sex

YEAR: 2017 | LENGTH: 1 part (35 minutes)  |  SOURCE: BBC


Documentary in which Stacey Dooley visits the Philippines to make a complex and chilling film about Filipino mothers who sexually abuse children, often their own, live in front of webcams in exchange for money.

For one week, Stacey gets unique access to Mike, an undercover special agent from ICE Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), and follows a secret operation in which HSI hope to arrest several mothers who are selling their own children for sex.

These women not only perform live sex shows but also traffic their children for abuse by travelling paedophiles – many of whom come from the US and the UK.

Stacey watches as Mike chats live online to mothers who are offering him sex with their own children, some as young as seven, for as little as $18. Over the next few days, Mike plans to meet them, arrest the mothers and rescue the children.

Documentaries, society, technology

The Story of Plastic

YEAR: 2019 | LENGTH: 1 part (88 minutes)  |  SOURCE: STORYOFSTUFF


Our first feature-length documentary, The Story of Plastic is a searing expose revealing the ugly truth behind plastic pollution and the false solution of plastic recycling. Different from every other plastic documentary you’ve seen, THE STORY OF PLASTIC presents a cohesive timeline of how we got to our current global plastic pollution crisis and how the oil and gas industry has successfully manipulated the narrative around it. From the extraction of fossil fuels and plastic disposal to the global resistance fighting back, THE STORY OF PLASTIC is a life-changing film depicting one of the world’s most pressing environmental issues.

Documentaries, society

The Truth about Magaluf

YEAR: 2014 | LENGTH: 1 part (57 minutes)  |  SOURCE: BBC


Stacey Dooley travels to Magaluf, on the Spanish island of Mallorca, to get under the skin of this popular resort. The resort is famous for the drunken antics of the British tourists who go there, but Stacey wants to find out what it’s like for the thousands of Spanish workers who serve, police and clear up.

What starts out as a regular shift at a bar or cleaning hotel rooms often ends up with Stacey uncovering a darker side that only the workers and residents get to see. Working in a bar Stacey is not only surprised to learn how much free alcohol is on offer to young British tourists, but she’s horrified when she witnesses the sexually explicit drinking games the drunk tourists are encouraged to play. When she spends a morning cleaning hotel rooms, not only does she learn about the vandalism and mess tourists leave behind, but she meets one member of staff who’s been left traumatised after he saw a young girl fall to her death at the hotel earlier this year, leaving him constantly worried about the safety of inebriated guests. Stacey discovers that the high numbers of tourists who die or are badly injured every year is linked to heavy drinking.

But it’s when Stacey rides along with an ambulance crew and a police patrol car over a busy weekend that she discovers things are really getting out of control in Magaluf. She hears how the emergency services have seen their worst year ever, cases of violent fights and rape are on the rise, women posing as prostitutes are ganging up on young, and often British, tourists and robbing them. Sadly this year, they’ve seen more deaths in the resort than ever before, mainly due to a craze called balconing.

Documentaries, society


YEAR: 2020 | LENGTH: 1 part (106 minutes)  |  SOURCE: WIKIPEDIA


The film explores the investigation and harassment of Martin Luther King Jr. by J. Edgar Hoover and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, through newly declassified documents.

Much of the documentary utilizes archival footage of MLK between 1955 and 1968, the years of his work as a civil rights activist. It is largely chronological, showing a young MLK from the early sixties until 1968 when he was assassinated. No new information is revealed about his assassination. The last sequence makes the statement that not all FBI documents have been declassified, and that the whole record will be declassified and made available to the public in 2027.

The documentary covers the attempts by Hoover and the FBI to discredit King by collecting recordings and images of his private sexual life with women other than his wife. This is to denigrate his status within the civil rights movement for black people in the United States, which was gaining momentum. There is a stark contrast between the thoroughly white complexion of the FBI and the many crowds of black people assembled around MLK.

Documentaries, technology

The Bit Player

YEAR: 2018 | LENGTH: 1 part (85 minutes)  |  SOURCE: WIKIPEDIA


The Bit Player is a 2019 documentary film created to celebrate the 2016 centenary of the birth of Claude Shannon, the “father of information theory”.

Claude Elwood Shannon (April 30, 1916 – February 24, 2001) was an American mathematician, electrical engineer, and cryptographer known as “the father of information theory”. Shannon is noted for having founded information theory with a landmark paper, “A Mathematical Theory of Communication”, which he published in 1948.

He is also well known for founding digital circuit design theory in 1937, when—as a 21-year-old master’s degree student at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)—he wrote his thesis demonstrating that electrical applications of Boolean algebra could construct any logical numerical relationship.[3] Shannon contributed to the field of cryptanalysis for national defense during World War II, including his fundamental work on codebreaking and secure telecommunications.

Documentaries, society

Costa del Narcos

YEAR: 2020 | LENGTH: 1 part (~60 minutes)  |  SOURCE: BBC


Southern Spain, famous for its beaches and sunshine, has become the main gateway for drugs into Europe. Violent turf wars between drug cartels have caused the government to issue a crackdown. For the last two years, the police have been fighting to take back control.

In this compelling film, Stacey gains unique access to the police, the dealers and the smugglers. She goes out on patrol with the air force team of the Guardia Civil and is invited along to witness a night-time raid in an attempt to arrest a cartel suspect they have been watching for two years.

To understand why this part of Spain sees so much cocaine, Stacey travels to the source – Apartado, Colombia. There she meets one of the biggest smugglers in the region. Faced with highly organised criminal gangs and the insatiable demand for drugs in Europe, Stacey debates whether this a war the police can ever win.

Part of the award-winning This World strand.

Documentaries, society

The Campaign Against the Climate

YEAR: 2021 | LENGTH: 1 part (47 minutes)  |  SOURCE: ALJAZEERA


The shocking exposure of a multi-million-dollar, 30-year denial campaign that has undermined science and cast doubt on the dangers of climate change.

These days, one might hope that the world sees what is happening to the climate as a serious global crisis – but that is not always the case. One reason for this is a 30-year-long project by some in the oil industry, who have spent millions of dollars manipulating public opinion and perceptions of climate change.

The Campaign Against The Climate, by Danish filmmaker Mads Ellesoe, unravels the elaborate cover-up by these climate change deniers and their funders, and tries to find the truth behind the climate change theory wars – especially in the United States and Europe. Whistle-blowers, academics, communications experts and historians expose those funding this denialism and uncover their dubious studies and think-tanks, which set out to prove that climate change is just a fad.

The deception started in 1988 – but even today, some of the oil industry’s so-called “green” work belies the fact that 95 percent of its investments in new energy still go into fossil fuel extraction, further stoking global warming.

Documentaries, society, technology

The Spy in Your Phone

YEAR: 2021 | LENGTH: 1 part (47 minutes)  |  SOURCE: ALJAZEERA


The story of how Israeli-made spyware Pegasus works, the hacking of journalists’ phones and its ominous consequences.

In mid-2020, a mobile phone belonging to an Al Jazeera Arabic investigative team was hacked. Over the next few months, reporter Tamer Almisshal and the Canadian research group Citizen Lab investigated Pegasus, the sophisticated spyware used.

Pegasus is manufactured by an Israeli technology company called the NSO Group and is among the most advanced spyware in the world. It can access and infiltrate a smartphone without the owner clicking a link, opening an email or even answering their phone – meaning it can go undetected.

This investigation exposes how Pegasus works, how governments like Saudi Arabia and the UAE have bought the hugely expensive spyware and how it has been used beyond the stated intentions of the NSO Group of “developing technology to prevent and investigate terror and crime” – including to target journalists.

Documentaries, society

The Cost of Cobalt

YEAR: 2021 | LENGTH: 1 part (25 minutes)  |  SOURCE: ALJAZEERA


In the Katanga region of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), increasing numbers of babies are being born with horrific birth defects. Some of this, scientists say, is due to a huge surge in the global demand for cobalt – a metallic element that is playing a key role in the battle to reduce carbon emissions and slow climate change.

Cobalt is vital for the manufacture of lithium batteries used in electric cars and the DRC has at least 60 percent of the world’s reserves – mostly in and around Katanga.

But according to research published in The Lancet medical journal and elsewhere, cobalt extraction, smelting and other related industrial practices in the region are polluting the environment and contaminating people working in the mines or living close to them. The health consequences are dire – especially for pregnant women and the children they bear.

Filmmakers Robert Flummerfelt and Fiona Lloyd-Davies – with support from the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting-  have been to investigate.