Independent Lens

This acclaimed Emmy Award-winning anthology series features documentaries and a limited number of fiction films united by the creative freedom, artistic achievement and unflinching visions of their independent producers. INDEPENDENT LENS features unforgettable stories about a unique individual, community or moment in history. The series is supported by interactive companion Web sites and national publicity and community engagement campaigns.

Sat, Apr 17 3:00 A.M. Down A Dark Stairwell     NH EXPLORE

A Chinese American cop shoots and kills an innocent Black man in the dark stairwell of a Brooklyn housing project.

Sat, Apr 17 12:00 P.M. Down A Dark Stairwell     NH WORLD

A Chinese American cop shoots and kills an innocent Black man in the dark stairwell of a Brooklyn housing project.

Sat, Apr 17 9:00 P.M. Coded Bias     NH WORLD

When MIT Media Lab researcher Joy Buolamwini discovers most facial recognition does not see dark-skinned faces or women with accuracy, she joins the fight to expose the threats to civil liberties posed by an increasingly data-driven, automated world.

Sun, Apr 18 12:00 A.M. Coded Bias     NH WORLD

When MIT Media Lab researcher Joy Buolamwini discovers most facial recognition does not see dark-skinned faces or women with accuracy, she joins the fight to expose the threats to civil liberties posed by an increasingly data-driven, automated world.

Wed, Apr 21 7:00 P.M. Bedlam     NH WORLD

Hear the poignant stories of people grappling with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and other psychiatric conditions.

Thu, Apr 22 12:00 A.M. Bedlam     NH WORLD

Hear the poignant stories of people grappling with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and other psychiatric conditions.

Thu, Apr 22 8:00 A.M. Bedlam     NH WORLD

Hear the poignant stories of people grappling with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and other psychiatric conditions.

Sun, May 9 6:00 P.M. A Woman's Work: The NFL's Cheerleader Problem     NHPBS

NFL cheerleaders revolve their lives around their sport, but most earn less than minimum wage.

Mon, May 10 1:00 P.M. A Woman's Work: The NFL's Cheerleader Problem     NH EXPLORE

NFL cheerleaders revolve their lives around their sport, but most earn less than minimum wage.

Mon, May 17 7:00 P.M. Eating Up Easter     NH WORLD

See how climate change and a booming tourism trade threaten the fragile economy of Rapa Nui, also known as Easter Island, and meet the local artists, ecologists and developers balancing their strong cultural heritage with modern-day challenges.

Tue, May 18 12:00 A.M. Eating Up Easter     NH WORLD

See how climate change and a booming tourism trade threaten the fragile economy of Rapa Nui, also known as Easter Island, and meet the local artists, ecologists and developers balancing their strong cultural heritage with modern-day challenges.

Tue, May 18 8:00 A.M. Eating Up Easter     NH WORLD

See how climate change and a booming tourism trade threaten the fragile economy of Rapa Nui, also known as Easter Island, and meet the local artists, ecologists and developers balancing their strong cultural heritage with modern-day challenges.

Sun, May 23 4:00 A.M. Eating Up Easter     NH WORLD

See how climate change and a booming tourism trade threaten the fragile economy of Rapa Nui, also known as Easter Island, and meet the local artists, ecologists and developers balancing their strong cultural heritage with modern-day challenges.

Mon, May 24 10:00 P.M. The Donut King     NHPBS

Hear the incredible story of Ted Ngoy. After fleeing Cambodia for the United States, he built a multi-million-dollar fried pastry empire, Christy's Doughnuts, and began living his American Dream.

Tue, May 25 1:30 A.M. The Donut King     NH EXPLORE

Hear the incredible story of Ted Ngoy. After fleeing Cambodia for the United States, he built a multi-million-dollar fried pastry empire, Christy's Doughnuts, and began living his American Dream.

Tue, May 25 4:30 A.M. The Donut King     NHPBS

Hear the incredible story of Ted Ngoy. After fleeing Cambodia for the United States, he built a multi-million-dollar fried pastry empire, Christy's Doughnuts, and began living his American Dream.

Wed, May 26 3:00 A.M. The Donut King     NH EXPLORE

Hear the incredible story of Ted Ngoy. After fleeing Cambodia for the United States, he built a multi-million-dollar fried pastry empire, Christy's Doughnuts, and began living his American Dream.

Wed, May 26 1:00 P.M. The Donut King     NH EXPLORE

Hear the incredible story of Ted Ngoy. After fleeing Cambodia for the United States, he built a multi-million-dollar fried pastry empire, Christy's Doughnuts, and began living his American Dream.

Wed, May 26 7:30 P.M. The Donut King     NH WORLD

Hear the incredible story of Ted Ngoy. After fleeing Cambodia for the United States, he built a multi-million-dollar fried pastry empire, Christy's Doughnuts, and began living his American Dream.

Thu, May 27 12:30 A.M. The Donut King     NH WORLD

Hear the incredible story of Ted Ngoy. After fleeing Cambodia for the United States, he built a multi-million-dollar fried pastry empire, Christy's Doughnuts, and began living his American Dream.

Thu, May 27 8:30 A.M. The Donut King     NH WORLD

Hear the incredible story of Ted Ngoy. After fleeing Cambodia for the United States, he built a multi-million-dollar fried pastry empire, Christy's Doughnuts, and began living his American Dream.

Fri, May 28 1:30 A.M. The Donut King     NH EXPLORE

Hear the incredible story of Ted Ngoy. After fleeing Cambodia for the United States, he built a multi-million-dollar fried pastry empire, Christy's Doughnuts, and began living his American Dream.

Fri, May 28 10:30 P.M. The Donut King     NH EXPLORE

Hear the incredible story of Ted Ngoy. After fleeing Cambodia for the United States, he built a multi-million-dollar fried pastry empire, Christy's Doughnuts, and began living his American Dream.


Watch Independent Lens - Clips, Episodes & Previews


Independent Lens By Episode

  • Little White Lie (#1610)

    Filmmaker Lacey Schwartz grew up with two loving Jewish parents.

  • Born to Fly: Elizabeth Streb Vs. Gravity (#1615)

    Follow the evolution of daredevil choreographer Elizabeth Streb's movement philosophy as expressed through her technique, lifestyle and challenge to assumptions about art, aging, injury, gender and human possibility.

  • Limited Partnership (#1617)

    In 1975, when American Richard married Australian native Tony in one of the first same sex marriages performed in the US, they found themselves on the front lines in the battle for legal immigration status for same sex spouses.

  • Autism In Love (#1706)

    Follow four adults on the autism spectrum as they open up their personal lives and navigate dating and romantic relationships.

  • In Football We Trust (#1708)

    Explore the story behind the Polynesian pipeline to the NFL through the lives of high school players in Utah.

  • A Ballerina's Tale (#1709)

    Explore the rise of Misty Copeland, who made history as the first African-American female principal dancer with the prestigious American Ballet Theater.

  • Wilhemina's War (#1711)

    A Southern grandmother struggles to help her family through the scourge of HIV, but may be unable to save those she loves.

  • An Honest Liar (#1712)

    Meet James "The Amazing" Randi, the famed magician and self-proclaimed "honest liar" who dedicated his life to exposing frauds.

  • Welcome to Leith (#1713)

    Explore how residents of a North Dakota town struggle against a notorious white supremacist.

  • Democrats/Democrats/Soft Vengeance (#1714)

    Watch history being made as Zimbabwe attempts to draft its first-ever democratic constitution.

  • My Nazi Legacy: What Our Fathers Did (#1715)

    Meet the sons of two Nazi war criminals who jointly were responsible for thousands of deaths.

  • The Armor of Light (#1717)

    Meet two Christians - an Evangelical anti-abortion activist and an African-American mother whose son was murdered - who find common ground in the fight against the rising tide of gun violence.

  • Dogtown Redemption (#1718)

    Meet street recyclers who fight to survive in one of the poorest neighborhoods of Oakland, California.

  • TRAPPED (#1719)

    Go inside the contentious issue of abortion rights through the story of health care providers and others in Texas, Mississippi and Alabama who are fighting against controversial new TRAP laws that are closing clinics.

  • T-Rex: Her Fight for Gold (#1720)

    Meet Claressa "T-Rex" Shields, who rose from the streets of Flint, Michigan, and at 17 won the first Olympic gold medal for women's boxing in 2012.

  • Meet The Patels (#1802)

    Ravi Patel is almost 30 and still single, and his tradition-minded Hindu family is not happy.

  • What Was Ours (#1805)

    A tribal elder and Vietnam vet, who hasn't left the Wind River Indian Reservation in over 40 years, visits the underground archives of Chicago's Field Museum with two young Arapaho to explore ancestral objects kept in boxes for many years.

  • The Witness (#1806)

    In 1964, Kitty Genovese was repeatedly stabbed on a street in Queens, New York.

  • Birth of a Movement (#1807)

    Learn how D.W. Griffith's 1915 The Birth of a Nation unleashed a battle still waging today about race relations and representation, and the power and influence of Hollywood.

  • The Bad Kids (#1810)

    Located in an impoverished Mojave Desert community, Black Rock Continuation High School is an alternative school for students at risk of dropping out; Black Rock is their last chance.

  • Ovarian Psycos (#1811)

    Based in the heart of Los Angeles' Eastside, and building upon the legacy of the Chicano/a and civil rights movement, the irreverently named Ovarian Psycos Cycle Brigade are a ferocious and unapologetic group of young women of color, cycling through the barrios and boulevards of the Eastside, committed to collectively confronting racism and violence, and demanding and creating safe spaces for women.

  • National Bird (#1815)

    National Bird is the first in-depth investigation of the U.

  • The Prison In Twelve Landscapes (#1816)

    More people are imprisoned in the United States at this present moment than in any other time or place in history, yet prisons themselves have never felt further away or more out of sight.

  • Forever Pure (#1817)

    The story of famed Israeli soccer club Beitar Jerusalem F.

  • Farmer/Veteran (#1819)

    A combat veteran starts a farm to help cultivate a healthier life outside the Army.

  • Real Boy (#1820)

    Real Boy is the coming-of-age story of Bennett, a trans teenager with dreams of musical stardom.

  • Shadow World (#1902)

    Based on Andrew Feinstein's globally acclaimed book The Shadow World: Inside the Global Arms Trade, Shadow World reveals the shocking realities of the global arms trade - the only business that counts its profits in billions and its losses in human lives.

  • Supergirl (#1903)

    Meet Naomi, a seemingly ordinary Orthodox Jewish preteen from New Jersey whose extraordinary talent - breaking world powerlifting records - turns her into an international phenomenon in this unique coming-of-age story.

  • The Untold Tales of Armistead Maupin (#1904)

    Meet the frank and funny creator of the groundbreaking Tales of the City and follow his evolution from a conservative son of the Old South to a gay rights pioneer whose work has inspired millions.

  • Unrest (#1905)

    Follow filmmaker Jennifer Brea's struggle with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and meet others coping with this often-devastating and little-understood condition in this intimate documentary.

  • I Am Not Your Negro (#1906)

    Watch a film that envisions the book James Baldwin never finished, a revolutionary and personal account of the lives and successive assassinations of three of his close friends: Medgar Evers, Malcolm X and Martin Luther King, Jr.

  • The Force (#1907)

    Go deep inside the long-troubled Oakland Police Department as it struggles to confront federal demands for reform, a popular uprising following events in Ferguson, Missouri, and an explosive scandal.

  • I Am Another You (#1908)

    Join Chinese filmmaker Nanfu Wang and Dylan, a charismatic young homeless drifter who left a comfortable home and loving family, in this mysterious cross-cultural road trip that explores of the limits and meaning of freedom.

  • Winnie (#1909)

    Explore the life of Winnie Mandela and her struggle to bring down apartheid, with intimate insights from those closest to her and testimony from the enemies who sought to extinguish her radical capacity to shake up the order of things.

  • Tell Them We Are Rising: The Story of Black Colleges and Universities (#1911)

    Tell Them We Are Rising: The Story of Black Colleges and Universities is a documentary and interactive project that explores the pivotal role historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) have played in American history, culture, and national identity.

  • Rat Film (#1910)

    Trace the history of Baltimore through this provocative film that uses the rat--as well as the humans who love them, live with them and kill them - to chronicle the systemized oppression in impoverished communities far beyond the city's borders.

  • Dolores (#1912)

    Meet the indomitable Dolores Huerta, who tirelessly led the fight for racial and labor justice alongside Cesar Chavez, becoming one of the most defiant - and unheralded - feminist activists of the 20th century.

  • When God Sleeps (#1913)

    Explore the journey of Iranian musician Shahin Najafi, forced into hiding after hardline clerics issue a fatwa for his death, incensed by a rap song that focuses on the oppression of women, sexism, and human rights abuses.

  • The Art of the Shine (#1914)

    Meet the unforgettable people who are turning the job of shoe shiner into an art form.

  • What Lies Upstream (#1915)

    Travel to West Virginia with investigative filmmaker Cullen Hoback in this detective story that uncovers the troubling truth behind a massive chemical spill that left 300,000 people without drinking water for months.

  • Look & See: Wendell Berry's Kentucky (#1916)

    Experience the changing landscapes and shifting values of rural America in the era of industrial agriculture, as seen through the mind's eye of award-winning writer and farmer Wendell Berry, back home in his native Henry County, Kentucky.

  • No Man's Land (#1917)

    Go inside the 2016 standoff at Oregon's Malheur National Wildlife Refuge between anti-government protestors and federal authorities.

  • True Conviction (#1919)

    Meet three exonerated ex-prisoners who start a detective agency to rebuild their lives, help free other wrongly incarcerated persons, and fix the criminal justice system.

  • Served Like A Girl (#1920)

    Join five remarkable women rebuilding their lives with humor and heart in the Ms.

  • Acorn and the Firestorm (#1918)

    Explore the politically charged battle to take down ACORN, a controversial national community-organizing group.

  • Wildland (#2001)

    Meet a single wildland firefighting crew as its members struggle with fear, loyalty, love and defeat all over the course of a single fire season.

  • Dawnland (#2002)

    See how a group of Native and non-Native leaders in Maine came together to acknowledge and address the abuses suffered by Native children in the hands of the child welfare system, illuminating the ongoing crisis of indigenous child removal.

  • The Cleaners (#2003)

    Meet the Filipino workers who comb through thousands of online images - particularly on Facebook and YouTube - to monitor and delete offensive, pornographic and incendiary posts.

  • The Judge (#2004)

    Take a rare glimpse into Shari'a law (Islamic law), an often misunderstood legal framework for Muslims, told through the eyes of the first woman judge to be appointed to the Middle East's religious courts.

  • Man On Fire (#2005)

    Learn the story of an elderly white Texas minister who set himself on fire to protest the virulent racism of his community and the country at large.

  • My Country No More (#2009)

    Explore the rise and fall of the recent North Dakota oil boom through the intimate lens of one family fighting to preserve their agricultural way of life, which puts them at odds with relatives and neighbors determined to sell.

  • Rodents of Unusual Size (#2007)

    Go deep into the bayous with fisherman Thomas Gonzales, who has lived through hurricanes and oil spills but now faces a bigger threat: monstrous 20-pound "swamp rats" who are eating up coastal wetlands.

  • The King (#2006)

    Climb into Elvis' 1963 Rolls-Royce for a musical road trip that traces the rise and fall of Elvis at a metaphor for the country he left behind.

  • Rumble: The Indians Who Rocked The World (#2008)

    Discover how Native American musicians have transformed American blues, jazz and rock in this musical celebration featuring Robbie Robertson, Taj Mahal, Slash, Jackson Browne, Taboo, Quincy Jones, Tony Bennett, Iggy Pop, Steven Tyler and more.

  • Black Memorabilia (#2010)

    From the South to Brooklyn to China, meet the people who reproduce, consume and reclaim black memorabilia, racially-charged objects often wrapped in the protective embrace of antiquity and historical preservation.

  • Hale County This Morning, This Evening (#2011)

    Visit the world of Hale County, Alabama. Composed of intimate and unencumbered moments in the lives of people in the community, the film offers a richly detailed glimpse at life in America's Black Belt.

  • People's Republic of Desire (#2012)

    Meet a generation of young people in China who have come of age online, where virtual relationships are replacing real-life connections.

  • Tre Maison Dasan (#2013)

    Explore the lives of Tre, Maison and Dasan, three of the estimated one in 14 American children with a parent in prison.

  • The Providers (#2014)

    Follow three "country doctors" in rural New Mexico -- the site of a physician shortage and an opioid epidemic -- who work at clinics that offer care for all, regardless of ability to pay.

  • Charm City (#2015)

    Meet a group of Baltimore citizens, police and government officials as they cope with the consequences of three years of unparalleled violence.

  • Out of State (#2016)

    Shipped thousands of miles away from Hawaii to a private prison in the Arizona desert, two Native Hawaiians discover their indigenous traditions from a fellow inmate serving a life sentence.

  • Harvest Season (#2017)

    Spend an agricultural year in Napa Valley and meet some of the unsung people who play a critical role in making some of the world's most celebrated wines, yet whose stories have largely gone untold.

  • Wrestle (#2018)

    Meet four Alabama high school wrestlers facing challenges on and off the mat.

  • Made In Boise (#2101)

    Go inside the lives of four surrogates in Boise, Idaho and the intended parents whose children they carry.

  • Decade of Fire (#2102)

    Discover why the Bronx burned in the 1970s. Through rich archival and home movie footage, the film reveals the real reasons for the devastation and shows what can happen when a community chooses to fight back and reclaim their neighborhood.

  • The Interpreters (#2103)

    Meet some of the more than 50,000 interpreters who helped protect U.

  • Conscience Point (#2104)

    CONSCIENCE POINT: A golf club built atop a sacred burial ground triggers a woman's relentless fight to protect her tribe from the onslaughts of development.

  • Attla (#2105)

    Discover the inspiring true story of Alaska Native dogsled champion George Attla, who, with one good leg and fierce determination, rose to international fame.

  • Accept The Call (#2106)

    Yusuf Abdurahman, who left Somalia as a refugee 25 years ago, has his worst fear realized when his son is arrested in an FBI counterterrorism sting.

  • The First Rainbow Coalition (#2107)

    In 1969, the Chicago Black Panther Party began to form alliances across lines of race and ethnicity with other community-based movements in the city, including the Latino group the Young Lords Organization and the southern whites of the Young Patriots organization.

  • Leftover Women (#2108)

    Meet three Chinese women labeled "leftover," a derogatory term for unmarried women in their mid-20s and 30s.

  • Cooked: Survival By Zip Code (#2109)

    Learn the story of a heat wave that overtook Chicago in July 1995, killing 739 residents, most of them poor, elderly and African American.

  • We Believe In Dinosaurs (#2110)

    Learn about the building of a $120 million Noah's Ark exhibit, backed by the Creation Museum in Williamstown, Kentucky, and designed to prove the Bible is historically and scientifically accurate, and hear from residents who support and oppose it.

  • Always In Season (#2111)

    In 2014, African American teenager Lennon Lacy was found hanging from a swing set.

  • One Child Nation (#2112)

    China's one-child policy forever changed the lives of mothers and children.

  • Bedlam (#2113)

    Hear the poignant stories of people grappling with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and other psychiatric conditions.

  • The Hottest August (#2114)

    Listen as ordinary New Yorkers attempt to answer the question "What were you doing while the planet burned?" During one sweltering month in 2017, they discuss the biggest issues they face, from climate change to skyrocketing rents to mass shootings.

  • Jim Allison: Breakthrough (#2115)

    Meet a visionary doctor on a journey to find a cure for cancer.

  • Rewind (#2116)

    Uncover a horrifying secret buried within one tight-knit suburban family's home video footage - a secret that, when revealed, leads to a media firestorm, a high-stakes court battle and a determination to heal

  • Eating Up Easter (#2117)

    See how climate change and a booming tourism trade threaten the fragile economy of Rapa Nui, also known as Easter Island, and meet the local artists, ecologists and developers balancing their strong cultural heritage with modern-day challenges.

  • Recorder: The Marion Stokes Project (#2118)

    Activist Marion Stokes secretly recorded American television 24 hours a day from 1975 to 2012, creating an invaluable comprehensive archive of the media.

  • Pipe Dreams (#2119)

    Follow four ultra-talented young people from all over the world as they play to win the Canadian International Organ Competition, which is open to virtuosi under age 35.

  • Won't You Be My Neighbor? (#2201)

    Celebrate the legacy of icon Fred Rogers in a film from Academy Award winner Morgan Neville.

  • Feels Good Man (#2202)

    Follow artist Matt Furie, creator of the comic character Pepe the Frog, as he begins an uphill battle to take back his iconic cartoon image from those who use it for their own purposes.

  • Represent (#2203)

    Leading up to the 2018 midterm elections in the heart of the Midwest, three women take on entrenched local political networks in their fight to reshape politics on their own terms.

  • Jonathan Scott's Power Trip (#2204)

    Follow home renovation expert Jonathan Scott on his mission to flip the switch on how Americans access power.

  • Belly of the Beast (#2205)

    Hear the horrifying truth about modern-day eugenics and reproductive injustice in California prisons through intimate accounts from currently and formerly incarcerated people filmed over the course of seven years.

  • A Woman's Work: The NFL's Cheerleader Problem (#2206)

    NFL cheerleaders revolve their lives around their sport, but most earn less than minimum wage.

  • A Day in the Life of America/American Nomads (#2207)

    On July 4, 2017, more than 90 film crews across the country capture Americans in the midst of life, liberty and their particular pursuit of happiness, creating an unflinching snapshot of the depth and breadth of the American experience.

  • 9to5: The Story of a Movement (#2208)

    Go inside the inspiring movement for women's workplace equality in the 1970s.

  • Women In Blue (#2209)

    Under the leadership of the Minneapolis Police Department's first female chief, women officers seek gender equity, redefining what it means to protect and serve.

  • Mr. Soul! (#2210)

    Celebrate SOUL!

  • Coded Bias (#2211)

    When MIT Media Lab researcher Joy Buolamwini discovers most facial recognition does not see dark-skinned faces or women with accuracy, she joins the fight to expose the threats to civil liberties posed by an increasingly data-driven, automated world.

  • Down A Dark Stairwell (#2213)

    A Chinese American cop shoots and kills an innocent Black man in the dark stairwell of a Brooklyn housing project.

  • The Donut King (#2214)

    Hear the incredible story of Ted Ngoy. After fleeing Cambodia for the United States, he built a multi-million-dollar fried pastry empire, Christy's Doughnuts, and began living his American Dream.



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