I've always had a huge interest for past and current social movements in the U.S, Latin America and the rest of the world — especially everything that went down in the 1960s and 70s.
Since I can't time-travel back to that era, I have to settle for watching documentaries and reading about all the history and movements that took place.
A long time ago, an old classmate of mine recommended me the documentary "Sir! No Sir!" I looked through Casa Video's web site and I was happy to see they had it so I went over and rented it. This one definitely reenergized me, and got me excited about exploring the doc section again, after forcing myself to watch (the kind of annoying) Autism: The Musical.
"Sir! No Sir!" is about the GI movement against the war in Vietnam. The documentary shows amazing real-life footage from protests and tons of interviews with some of the soldiers who were part of the movement.
Watching this was such a learning experience. I knew that a lot of GIs, who had been overseas, came back and joined movements to end the war, but this documentary filled me in with a lot of the sacrifices they made and risks they took when joining the movement (even facing prison sentences and death threats).
A lot of the soldiers thought they were in it for the right reasons until they saw the attrocities being committed against innocent people. One of the names I remember is Donald Duncan. He was one of the first GIs to quit the war. Duncan came back to the states and started giving speeches about his experience in Vietnam and why he thought the war was totally fucked. Another interesting part was learning about the Presidio 27. Presidio was an army stockade in San Francisco where a lot of these soldiers were sent as punishment for not wanting to fight in the war or for abandoning their tour early. You'll have to watch the doc, as I did, to learn more about the Presidio 27. I don't want to give anything away.
I strongly recommed this one! It's interesting from beginning to end. I will even go as far as saying that I will probably purchase it online. Here is what the New York Times had to say about it.