Former Sheriff William "Dub" Lawrence, in a scene from the documentary Peace Officer. It's not his job to investigate old crimes and officer-involved shootings — but that hasn't stopped him from obsessing over them. Courtesy of the artist hide caption

toggle caption Courtesy of the artist

Fred Armisen and Bill Hader send up the classic documentary Grey Gardens in the first episode of their new TV series, Documentary Now! Tyler Golden/IFC hide caption

toggle caption Tyler Golden/IFC

In The Look of Silence, Indonesian optician Adi Rukun, pictured here in a scene from the film with his mother, investigates the murder of his older brother in mass violence following a 1965 coup. Perpetrators and their relatives "would taunt us for being their victims," he says. Courtesy of Drafthouse Films and Participant Media hide caption

toggle caption Courtesy of Drafthouse Films and Participant Media

Jean and Carl Boenish in jump down a ledge towards camera. Courtesy of Magnolia Pictures. hide caption

toggle caption Courtesy of Magnolia Pictures.

Sir David Attenborough at the Beijing Museum of Natural History with fossil of Juramaia, as featured in the Smithsonian Channel series Rise of Animals: Triumph of the Vertebrates. Courtesy Smithsonian Channel hide caption

toggle caption Courtesy Smithsonian Channel

Kurt Cobain with daughter Frances. Courtesy of HBO hide caption

toggle caption Courtesy of HBO

A woman walks past a memorial for some of the victims who are said to have died at the hands of the serial killer dubbed the "Grim Sleeper." Mark Ralston/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption Mark Ralston/AFP/Getty Images

Cambodian band Baksei Cham Krong. Mol Kamach/Courtesy of Argot Pictures hide caption

toggle caption Mol Kamach/Courtesy of Argot Pictures

Co-director Bruce Sinofsky attends the Paradise Lost 3: Purgatory press day at HBO Studios on Jan. 6, 2012, in New York City. Michael Loccisano/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption Michael Loccisano/Getty Images

Over a span of six decades, Doris Payne has stolen some $2 million in jewels. She is the subject of a new documentary called The Life & Crimes of Doris Payne: A Tale of Carats, Cons and Creating Your Own American Dream. Courtesy of Treehouse Moving Images hide caption

toggle caption Courtesy of Treehouse Moving Images

Raphael Lemkin is the Polish lawyer and linguist who coined the term "genocide" — and dedicated his life to making genocide recognized as a crime. Copyright by Arthur Leipzig /Courtesy of Howard Greenberg Gallery, New York hide caption

toggle caption Copyright by Arthur Leipzig /Courtesy of Howard Greenberg Gallery, New York

Jamira, 11, is an aboriginal girl in Australia. "I like being special," she says. "I like being — you know — different than everyone else." Henrik Nordstrom/I Am Eleven hide caption

toggle caption Henrik Nordstrom/I Am Eleven

NPR thanks our sponsors

Become an NPR sponsor