Documentary Films About Image and Sexuality

  • 17 short films about breasts
    DVD 1939 (2008, 55 min.) Documents women talking with candor about their breasts. includes topics of nursing, sexuality, aging, breast cancer, breast reconstruction, chemotherapy, and mastectomy.
  • 3 Girls I Know
    DVD 2675 (2004, 54 min.) "Intimate stories about young women, teen sexuality, pregnancy and HIV/AIDS"--Container and videodisc.
  • Adventures in the gender trade: a case for diversity
    DVD 537 (2003, 40 min.) A documentary account of night club performer Kate Bornstein's journey from unhappy boy child into liberated transsexual lesbian.
  • Arresting Ana
    DVD 7203 (2009; 25 min.) A French documentary about the online anorexia community and legal and free-speech issues related to it.
  • Asking for it: the ethics and erotics of sexual consent
    DVD 8094 (2010; 38 min.) A lecture by Dr. Harry Brod about the often unclear line between sexual consent and sexual coercion.
  • Barbie nation
    DVD 7915 (2007, 102 min.) Explores the history of the Barbie doll, through video clips and interviews with Barbie fans, foes, and fetishists.
  • Beauty Mark
    DVD 6119 (2009, 61 min.) A documentary by and about Diane Israel, an endurance runner, as she examines self-image, the culture of training and fitness, eating disorders, and self-recovery.
  • Beauty backlash, The
    DVD 3325 (2006, 30 min.) Investigates consumer reactions against the idealized images of beauty promoted by TV, movies, and glossy magazines, while exploring the complex relationship between corporate strategy and feminine self-esteem.
  • Body beautiful
    DVD 5686 (1990, 23 min.) Dramatizes a daughter’s feelings toward her mother, and how a mastectomy has affected their relationship. Discusses women’s body image, especially as it is affected by a mastectomy.
  • Body typed: 3 short films on media and physical perfection
    DVD 6258 (2010; 12 min., 11 min., 8 min.) The three films are "Wet dreams and false images," which exposes the art of digital photo-retouching; "The Guarantee" which examines self-perception and plastic surgery; and "34 x 25 x 36", which is a look at mannequins.
  • Boy named Sue, A
    DVD 7697 (2000, 57 min.) Documents the transformation of a female-to-male transexual over the course of six years
  • Breasts: A documentary
    DVD 5242 (1996, 50 min.) Twenty-two women speak candidly about their attitudes toward breasts
  • Busting out
    DVD 3675 (2004, 57 min.) An exploration of our society’s fascination with women’s breasts.
  • Buying into sexy
    DVD 5446 (2007, 26 min.) A report on how marketers, especially in the clothing industry, are selling a grown-up, sexy image to pre-teen girls.
  • Class queers
    DVD 6173 (2003, 40 min.) Focuses on three gay teenagers living in Toronto, and their relationships with family and neighborhood. The film introduces viewers to the Triangle Program, an alternative space for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered youth.
  • Clitoris, The
    DVD 6033 (2003, 60 min.) An offbeat documentary that blends graphic imagery, animation, media images, and interviews to explore female sexuality, focusing on the clitoris.
  • Codes of gender
    DVD 6629 (2009, 73 min.) An exploration of gender as a ritualized commercial performance, looking at how use of the body in advertising influences ideas about masculinity and femininity.
  • Cover girl culture
    DVD 6518 (2009, 80 min.) Examines advertising and the cult of celebrity and their impact teens and young women.
  • Dreamworlds 3
    DVD 3858 CORE (2007, 54 min.) The most recent update in the series of documentaries exploring the image of women in rock videos.
  • Dying to be thin
    DVD 4350 (2004, 60 min.) Examines eating disorders among girls and therapies that have been successful.
  • Ebony goddess
    DVD 9204 (2010, 20 min.) A carnival queen in Brazil based on Afro-centric notions of beauty challenges Western standards
  • Famine within, The
    DVD 6172 (1990, 55 min.) Explores body image, self esteem, eating disorders, and the influence of consumerism and the mass media.
  • Fat chance
    DVD 6178 (2007, 52 min.) A film by an overweight, single mom and filmmaker who chronicles her attempt to lose weight as she experiments with fad diets, fat machines, exercise programs, and consultations with an obesity expert, a psychiatriest, and a plastic surgeon.
  • Flirting with danger: power & choice in heterosexual relationships
    DVD 9022 (2012, 52 min.) A psychological look at popular culture and the way girls and women navigate between consent and coercion in their heterosexual relationships and hookups.
  • From the body cage
    DVD 5440 (2007, 28 min.) An insider's view to the paradoxical logic of bulimia nervosa.
  • Gender Redesigner
    DVD 4770 (2007, 72 min.) The story of fAe, who was “born with girl parts” but who concluded he was a man mistakenly endowed with a woman’s body.
  • Gender puzzle
    DVD 2148 (2005) Explores scientific research into gender development and the medical, cultural, and legal issues related to sex, gender, intersex, and transsexual identity and experience.
  • Generation M
    DVD 4132 (2008, 60 min.) Tracks the destructive dynamics of misogyny across a broad and disturbing range of media phenomena.
  • Girl power: all dolled up
    DVD 9297 (2011, 24 min.) Explores the impact of media and pop culture on the identity development of girls, as it questions whether or not the concept of 'girl power' sends the right message to empower girls.
  • Girls rock!
    DVD 5576 (2008, 89 min.)
  • Going on 13
    DVD 6958 (2008, 73 min.) Chronicles four girls' coming of age as they mature from little girls to young women. The film focuses on issues of school, family, friends, and identity.
  • I'm just Anneke | Family journey.
    DVD 7958 (2010, 26 min. [12 min. | 14 min.]) Two films exploring transgender issues from the Youth & Gender Media Project.
  • Inside her sex
    DVD 10539 (2014, 69 min.) Examines how today's sexualized society has distorted female sexuality.
  • Inside out
    DVD 2970 (2006, 39 min.) Documents the daily activities of three individuals who are coming to terms with their transgender identities and the related emotional and physical transformations while living in the Islamic Republic of Iran.
  • Interpreting nonverbal communication
    DVD 1038 (2004, 34 min.) Discusses the influences of gender, culture, ethnicity, context, and other variables on interpretation of nonverbal communication.
  • Just Gender
    DVD 10426 (2013, 90 min.) Through stories of transgender individuals and their spouses, friends, and allies, explores their fears, confusions, and joy.
  • Killing us softly 3
    DVD 858 (2002, 34 min.) The third in the series of Jean Kilbourne's pioneering study of gender representation in advertising.
  • Killing us softly 4
    DVD 6850 (2010, 45 min.) The first update in ten years by Jean Kilbourne in her study how advertising traffics in distorted and destructive ideals of femininity.
  • Made over in America
    DVD 6032 (2007, 65 min.) A look at the interconnections among the individuals' self-image, consumer culture, the media, and the medical makeover industry.
  • Mask You Live In
    DVD 10300 (2015, 90 min.) Explores the struggles and pressures boys and young men suffer with to stay true to themselves while negotiating America's narrow definition of masculinity.
  • Me, my sex, and I
    DVD 7345 (2012, 50 min.) Discusses both the medical and psychological aspects of intersex people.
  • Merchants of cool
    DVD 5357 (2003, 58 min.) A Frontline documentary examining the strategies and means of the marketers of popular culture to teenagers.
  • Mickey Mouse monopoly
    VIDEO 5822, 2002, 58 min. A critical look at the world Disney films create and the stories they tell about race, gender and class -- and the values propagated under the guise of innocence and fun.
  • Miss Representation
    DVD 8125 (2011, 90 min.) A look at the influence of mainstream media's portrayals of women on the under-representation of women in influential positions
  • Motherhood files
    DVD 9945 (2013, 91 min.) An experimental film that explores how childbirth, pregnancy, and women have been viewed over history.
  • No!
    DVD 2879 (2006, 92 min.) A comprehensive examination of sexual violence on Black women and girls and the behaviors and attitudes of Black men.
  • Not a love story: a film about pornography
    DVD 4824 (1991; 62 min.) A chronicle of two women, a filmmaker and a stripper, who set out to explore the world of pornography. Includes interviews with pornographers and opponents.
    DVD 2668 (2005, 57 min.) Explores the Internet in relation to alienation, especially in the area of human sexuality
  • One drop rule
    DVD 4607 (2001, 50 min.) Explores the recurring and divisive issue in African American communities of skin color.
  • Passion & power: the technology of orgasm
    DVD 5997 CORE (2008, 74 min.)
  • Personas and personalities
    DVD 2959 (2006, 75 min.) Features artists working with issues of identity and personality. For some, a constructed identity is an opportunity to explore personal or cultural issues of gender, accountability and culpability.
  • Phallacies
    DVD 502 (1999, 45 min.) An episode of the Canadian science show, The Nature of Things, explores the artistic, medical, and cultural meaning associated with the male organ.
  • PicturePerfect
    DVD 1981 (2007, 43 min.) Explores the impact that sexualized images have on young women's physical, psychological and emotional health.
  • Picturing the genders
    DVD 7738 (1998, 31 min.)
  • Playing unfair: the media image of the female athlete
    DVD 255. (2002, 30 min.) A critically examination of the post-Title IX media landscape in terms of the representation of female athletes.
  • Pornography of everyday life
    DVD 3468 (2006, 35 min.) A documentary that exposes use of pornography in ads, pop culture, and patriarchal religion.
  • Price of pleasure
    DVD 6028 (2008, 56 min.) This "eye-opening and disturbing" documentary study of pornography and its role in popular culture and people's lives.
  • Purity myth : the virginity movement's war against women
    DVD 8465 (2011, 45 min.) An examination of why the United States is obsessed with virginity and the overt and covert ways our society links a woman's worth to her sexuality.
  • Reviving Ophelia
    DVD 5823 (1998, 43 min.) Clinical psychologist and author Mary Pipher discusses the challenges facing today’s teenagers, especially girls, as well as the role of media and popular culture in shaping their identities.
  • Riot Grrrl New York City : a video. [Grrrl love and revolution]
    DVD 9222 (2012, 46 min.) Filmmaker Abby Moser's encapsulation of over 100 hours of original footage of Riot Grrrl meetings and events, and interviews shot between 1993 and 1996.
  • Secrets of the Sexes: Attraction (DVD)
    DVD 5472 (2005, 51 min.) Addresses the question whether or not sexual attraction can be scientifically predicted and looks at related biological and psychological issues related to attraction and dating.
  • Seeing through the media matrix
    DVD 2131 (2011, 60 min.) A companion program to Cover Girl Culture with newly released footage from experts and girls in Cover Girl Culture, presented in short movie clips.
  • Sex, female: women talking about sex
    DVD 1885 (2005, 59 min.) The title reveals the content -- the film is a presentation of free-spirited discussions by women about sex.
  • Sexy Inc. [videorecording] : nos enfants sous influence
    DVD 5715 (2007, 36 min.)
  • Shackled women
    DVD 2614 (2004) Assesses second- and third-world abuses of women’s rights. Covers topics such as dowry deaths, female circumcision, the Islamic zina law, the rigors of hijab, and child prostitution.
  • She's a boy I knew
    DVD 5563 (2008, 70 min.) A Canadian filmmaker documents her family and herself as she makes the transition from male to female over the course of several years
  • Sir: just a normal guy
    DVD 2231 (2001, 57 min.) Portrait of the 15-month female-to-male transition, exploring the emotional and physical changes of the transsexual experience.
  • Skin deep : the business of beauty
    DVD 7848 (1995-2003, 3 discs; 300 min.) Five TV programs related different aspects of the cost of beauty: The quest for the fountain of youth; Baby beauty queens; Young models: growing up fast; Beauty under the knife; and Beauty in a jar.
  • Slim hopes
    DVD 5828 (2002) Offers an in-depth analysis of how female bodies are depicted in advertising images and the devastating effects of those images on the health of women and girls.
  • Smell of burning ants, The
    DVD 2224 (1994) Raises gender issues and provokes the viewer to reflect on how our society can deprive boys of wholeness. Through the formative events of a boy’s life, we come to understand the ways in which men can become emotionally disconnected and alienated from their feminine side. Illustrates how boys are socialized by fear, power, and shame.
  • Spin the bottle: sex, lies and alcohol
    DVD 4804 (2004, 92 min.) Explores the college party scene examining the relationship of alcohol with sexual behavior and gender issues.
  • Straightlaced: : how gender's got us all tied up
    DVD 7377 (2009, 67 min.)
  • Strength to resist: media’s impact on women & girls [formerly known as "Beyond killing us softly"]
    DVD 569 CORE (2000, 34 min.) Third film in a series about the fight against the toxic and degrading messages to women and girls that dominate the media.
  • Subject is sex
    DVD 29965 (2004, 100 min.)
  • The evolution of Dad
    DVD 10515 (2010, 94 min.) Explores cultural and psychological aspects of modern fatherhood.
  • Tomboys
    DVD 2278 (2004, 28 min.) Answers the question "Are tomboys tamed once they grow up?" as it addresses gender identity.
  • Tough guise: violence, media, and the crisis in masculinity
    DVD 277 CORE (2002, 105 min.)
  • Trans generation
    DVD 6250 (2006, 2 videodiscs, 4 hr., 32 min.)
  • Vulva 3.0: between taboo and fine-tuning
    DVD 10535 (2014, 52 min.) Examines "the history of this particular aspect of the female anatomy in the 21st century" to celebrate the diversity of the female body. In German with English subtitles.
  • War zone
    DVD 4424. (2002, 76 min.) Documentary examining the gender rules of the street, where access to women’s bodies is regarded as a male right.
  • Weight Problem: cultural narratives of fat and "obesity"
    DVD 10126 (2014, 44 min.) Addresses stereotypes that circulate in our homes, schools, and college campuses. Challenges mass media and the rhetoric of the “obesity epidemic.”
  • Wet dreams and false images
    DVD 6258 (2006, 11 min.)
  • What a girl wants
    DVD 615 (2000. 30 min.) Interviews of middle and high school students about their views on media culture and its impact on their lives.
  • What teens want : Marketing to teens using music movies and the media
    DVD 1282 (2004, 254 min.) A study of marketing to teens using music, movies & the media
  • Wired for sex, lies and power trips: It's a teen's world
    DVD 7206 (2009, 45 min.) An examination of the culture of sexual harassment and bullying among adolescents, especially girls. The film follows three different groups of culturally diverse teenagers.
  • Wonder women!: the untold story of American superheroines
    DVD 9382 (2012, 55 min.) A critique of gender and heroism in popular culture, starting with comic book heroines but moving on to modern representations of powerful women in the media.
  • You don't know Dick: courageous hearts of transsexual men
    DVD 4675(1997) Provides honest and riveting portraits of six men who once were women. Through their commentaries and the experiences of partners, friends, and family emerges an unforgettable story of self-discovery.
  • bro code [videorecording] : how contemporary culture creates sexist men / a presentation of the Media Education Foundation
    DVD 8090 (2013, 58 min.) Explores how male culture conditions boys and men to dehumanize and disrespect women. Discussion guide available at
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