9 of the Best Space Documentaries You Can Stream Right Now

Apollo 11 features never-before-seen footage and audio of astronauts Michael Collins (left), Neil Armstrong (middle), and Buzz Aldrin (right).
Apollo 11 features never-before-seen footage and audio of astronauts Michael Collins (left), Neil Armstrong (middle), and Buzz Aldrin (right).

If you’ve already binged all the documentaries about serial killers and surprisingly fit Supreme Court Justices available, maybe your next step should be to set your sights a bit … higher. Between these space documentaries on Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, and Disney+, you’ll explore black holes, hang out with the Curiosity rover on Mars, and relive man's first steps on the moon, all without even needing to put on socks.

1. Apollo 11 (2019)

Through the use of digitally remastered archival footage and over 11,000 hours of audio recordings, director Todd Douglas Miller’s Apollo 11 recounts man’s journey to the moon in unbelievably crystal-clear quality. By seeing the mission unfold through the eyes of Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin, Michael Collins, and the team at NASA in HD, viewers are given a new perspective on this iconic moment of human achievement. It's as close as we'll ever get to the real-time tension mission control felt back in 1969.

Find it: Hulu

2. Apollo: Missions to the Moon (2019)

Similar to Apollo 11, Apollo: Missions to the Moon relies purely on archival footage and audio from the early years of the space program. But instead of just focusing on the triumph of man first setting foot on the moon, this documentary covers the entire history of the Apollo Program, both its successes and tragedies, including the fire that claimed the lives of the Apollo 1 crew and the drama of Apollo 13. Both somber and joyous, Missions to the Moon aims to give a deeper appreciation for what we accomplished with Apollo 11 by humanizing the difficult road that got us there.

Find it: Disney+

3. The Last Man on the Moon (2014)

The last footsteps to be pressed into the moon’s surface were taken in December 1972, when astronaut Gene Cernan made a final lunar walk as part of the Apollo 17 mission. Before he could reach those heights, though, he had to make plenty of personal sacrifices along the way, especially when it came to his family life. This documentary uses archival footage and present-day interviews to tell Cernan’s story, from his early days on the nearly disastrous Gemini 9A mission, all the way through those last moments on the moon six years later, when he famously wrote his daughter’s initials—TDC—on the cold lunar surface. In between, you’ll see how being an astronaut can make you a hero to the public and a stranger in your own home.

Find it: Netflix

4. How the Universe Works (2012)

The biggest compliment you can throw at How the Universe Works is that it’s like comfort food for your brain. Each episode takes daunting subject matter, like black holes and dark matter, and presents it in a way that's digestible for anyone, even if you just have a passing curiosity about life outside our own atmosphere. Featuring commentary from notable experts in the field, including theoretical physicist Michio Kaku, and surprisingly fitting narration by Mike Rowe, this is one of the most bingeable science documentary series to stream and is a perfect first step into an ever-expanding universe of knowledge.

Find it: Amazon Prime Video

5. The Universe (2009)

Similar to How the Universe Works, History's The Universe is meant to be a 101 experience. You'll only get the first season on Netflix, but that's more than enough time to learn all about black holes, the planets in our solar system, and a few developments beyond the Milky Way. And if you’re really down for a feel-good story, there’s a 44-minute episode centered solely on how the Earth will ultimately meet its demise, thanks to what the show describes as various “cosmic killers.”

Find it: Netflix

6. The Mars Generation (2017)

These prospective astronauts aren’t just hoping to reach Mars—they’re actively preparing for it. The Mars Generation documents the teenage hopefuls at Space Camp as they go through drills, sit in mock spacecrafts, and take part in simulated deep-space missions (with simulated calamities), all to see what it would be like to take that first journey to the Red Planet. As this young crop gets its first taste of shuttle life, the documentary shifts its focus to experts who chime in on the current state of NASA (the good and the bad) and what it would take for humanity to actually get to Mars.

Find it: Netflix

7. Mission Control: The Unsung Heroes of Apollo (2017)

There would be no moon landing without the Neil Armstrongs and Buzz Aldrins of the world—but there would be no Neil Armstrong or Buzz Aldrin without an army of NASA support crews making sure their voyage to the stars actually got off the ground. In this documentary, you’ll meet the behind-the-scenes figures of mission control—including the flight directors, life-support technicians, and engineers—and learn how they helped guide our astronauts toward immortality.

Find it: Netflix

8. Nova: Death Dive to Saturn (2017)

What’s so fascinating about the missions featured on this list is how years of preparation and untold millions of dollars spent can all be undone by one slight miscalculation. In Nova: Death Dive to Saturn, you can get a taste of all the work that goes into a single expedition, this time focused on Cassini’s mission to Saturn. It was an endeavor that changed the way we view the ringed planet and its moons, but the main focus here is the craft's final act in September 2017, as Cassini was sent on a dive in between Saturn and its rings, ultimately unearthing even more knowledge along the way before it was inevitably destroyed.

Find it: Netflix

9. The Voyage of Curiosity (2017)

When NASA launched the Curiosity rover to Mars in November 2011, its mission was clear: Explore the Gale Crater and gather rock and soil samples so scientists can tell whether life was ever possible on the planet. It was a massive undertaking for NASA, and in this documentary, you can take a closer look at the life of Curiosity, from the rover’s early testing days to the progress it's made on Mars. This one goes a bit more in-depth into the mission details than many others on this list, but if you're willing to immerse yourself in it, you'll come away with a unique look at one of NASA's most high-profile recent expeditions.

Find it: Amazon Prime Video

10 of the Most Popular Portable Bluetooth Speakers on Amazon

Altech/Bose/JBL/Amazon
Altech/Bose/JBL/Amazon

As convenient as smartphones and tablets are, they don’t necessarily offer the best sound quality. But a well-built portable speaker can fill that need. And whether you’re looking for a speaker to use in the shower or a device to take on a long camping trip, these bestselling models from Amazon have you covered.

1. OontZ Angle 3 Bluetooth Portable Speaker; $26-$30 (4.4 stars)

Oontz portable bluetooth speaker
Cambridge Soundworks/Amazon

Of the 57,000-plus reviews that users have left for this speaker on Amazon, 72 percent of them are five stars. So it should come as no surprise that this is currently the best-selling portable Bluetooth speaker on the site. It comes in eight different colors and can play for up to 14 hours straight after a full charge. Plus, it’s splash proof, making it a perfect speaker for the shower, beach, or pool.

Buy it: Amazon

2. JBL Charge 3 Waterproof Portable Bluetooth Speaker; $110 (4.6 stars)

JBL portable bluetooth speaker
JBL/Amazon

This nifty speaker can connect with up to three devices at one time, so you and your friends can take turns sharing your favorite music. Its built-in battery can play music for up to 20 hours, and it can even charge smartphones and tablets via USB.

Buy it: Amazon

3. Anker Soundcore Bluetooth Speaker; $25-$28 (4.6 stars)

Anker portable bluetooth speaker
Anker/Amazon

This speaker boasts 24-hour battery life and a strong Bluetooth connection within a 66-foot radius. It also comes with a built-in microphone so you can easily take calls over speakerphone.

Buy it: Amazon

4. Bose SoundLink Color Bluetooth Speaker; $129 (4.4 stars)

Bose portable bluetooth speaker
Bose/Amazon

Bose is well-known for building user-friendly products that offer excellent sound quality. This portable speaker lets you connect to the Bose app, which makes it easier to switch between devices and personalize your settings. It’s also water-resistant, making it durable enough to handle a day at the pool or beach.

Buy it: Amazon

5. DOSS Soundbox Touch Portable Wireless Bluetooth Speaker; $28-$33 (4.4 stars)

DOSS portable bluetooth speaker
DOSS/Amazon

This portable speaker features an elegant system of touch controls that lets you easily switch between three methods of playing audio—Bluetooth, Micro SD, or auxiliary input. It can play for up to 20 hours after a full charge.

Buy it: Amazon

6. Altec Lansing Mini Wireless Bluetooth Speaker; $15-$20 (4.3 stars)

Altec Lansing portable bluetooth speaker
Altec Lansing/Amazon

This lightweight speaker is built for the outdoors. With its certified IP67 rating—meaning that it’s fully waterproof, shockproof, and dust proof—it’s durable enough to withstand harsh environments. Plus, it comes with a carabiner that can attach to a backpack or belt loop.

Buy it: Amazon

7. Tribit XSound Go Bluetooth Speaker; $33-$38 (4.6 stars)

Tribit portable bluetooth speaker
Tribit/Amazon

Tribit’s portable Bluetooth speaker weighs less than a pound and is fully waterproof and resistant to scratches and drops. It also comes with a tear-resistant strap for easy transportation, and the rechargeable battery can handle up to 24 hours of continuous use after a full charge. In 2020, it was Wirecutter's pick as the best budget portable Bluetooth speaker on the market.

Buy it: Amazon

8. VicTsing SoundHot C6 Portable Bluetooth Speaker; $18 (4.3 stars)

VicTsing portable bluetooth speaker
VicTsing/Amazon

The SoundHot portable Bluetooth speaker is designed for convenience wherever you go. It comes with a detachable suction cup and a carabiner so you can keep it secure while you’re showering, kayaking, or hiking, to name just a few.

Buy it: Amazon

9. AOMAIS Sport II Portable Wireless Bluetooth Speaker; $30 (4.4 stars)

AOMAIS portable bluetooth speaker
AOMAIS/Amazon

This portable speaker is certified to handle deep waters and harsh weather, making it perfect for your next big adventure. It can play for up to 15 hours on a full charge and offers a stable Bluetooth connection within a 100-foot radius.

Buy it: Amazon

10. XLEADER SoundAngel Touch Bluetooth Speaker; $19-$23 (4.4 stars)

XLeader portable bluetooth speaker
XLEADER/Amazon

This stylish device is available in black, silver, gold, and rose gold. Plus, it’s equipped with Bluetooth 5.0, a more powerful technology that can pair with devices up to 800 feet away. The SoundAngel speaker itself isn’t water-resistant, but it comes with a waterproof case for protection in less-than-ideal conditions.

Buy it: Amazon

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5 Popular Back to the Future Fan Theories, Examined

Marty and Doc Brown were best friends. Too bad Doc had to kill him.
Marty and Doc Brown were best friends. Too bad Doc had to kill him.
Universal Pictures Home Entertainment

July marks the 35th anniversary of Back to the Future, the enduring sci-fi and comedy classic starring Michael J. Fox as Marty McFly, an amiable teen who strikes up an unlikely friendship with Emmett "Doc" Brown (Christopher Lloyd). Thanks to Doc's DeLorean time machine, Marty winds up in 1955 to save Doc’s life and to make sure his parents (Crispin Glover and Lea Thompson) fall in love, thereby ensuring his existence.

Fans of the film have spent the past several decades wrapping their minds around the movie’s time travel paradoxes and missing pieces of the plot. Take a look at some of the most popular theories, then check out Back to the Future and its sequels on Netflix to see if they carry any weight.

1. Marty McFly’s parents knew he was a time traveler.

Perhaps the biggest mystery of Back to the Future is why George and Lorraine McFly fail to notice that their grown son Marty bears a striking resemblance to the man they knew as “Calvin Klein” who dropped into their lives in 1955 to make sure their romance was intact. One theory explained by Redditor djbred18 offers that George and Lorraine did recognize him. “I mean they had 30 years to figure it out!” the user said. Crucially, George heard “Calvin” using the names of Darth Vader and the Vulcan race from Star Trek years before they materialized, a fact any science-fiction author like George would have picked up on. A scene late in the film where Marty’s parents give him a brand-new truck and offer a knowing smile could be read as a thank you for his efforts.

Speaking with The Hollywood Reporter in 2020, Back to the Future co-screenwriter Bob Gale explained that they didn't make the connection: It was a simple case of Marty’s parents not recognizing the man they had spent just a few days with 30 years prior. “I would ask anyone to think back to their own high school days and ask themselves how well they remember a kid who might have been at their school for even a semester,” he said. “Or someone you went out with just one time. If you had no photo reference, after 25 years, you’d probably just have a hazy recollection.”

2. Doc Brown was suicidal.

While testing his DeLorean in the Twin Pines Mall parking lot, Doc Brown steps directly in front of the car traveling at 88 mph. The only way he wouldn’t be crushed is if his experiment succeeded and the car vanishes. Yet Doc makes mention of his other experiments being disappointing. Given his lack of confidence in his own abilities, standing in front of the car appears to be a death wish.

When asked about this theory by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) in 2018, Christopher Lloyd wasn’t buying into it. “I don’t think so,” Lloyd said. “Because Doc had so much confidence in what he was doing, he didn’t worry about that ... maybe a little doubtful, but Doc didn’t have a grim nature.”

However, Lloyd did add that: “You’ve given me a lot to think about though.”

3. Marty McFly’s actions altered his girlfriend’s appearance.

Elisabeth Shue, Michael J. Fox, and Christopher Lloyd in 'Back to the Future Part II' (1989)
Elisabeth Shue, Michael J. Fox, and Christopher Lloyd in Back to the Future Part II (1989).
Universal Pictures Home Entertainment

In the first Back to the Future, actress Claudia Wells portrays Jennifer Parker, Marty’s girlfriend. In 1989’s Back to the Future Part II, Elizabeth Shue took over the role because Wells was dealing with an illness in her family. For a series about time travel, it might be easy to explain why Jennifer’s appearance changes. According to Reddit user j1ggy, Marty’s presence resulted in unseen but demonstrative effects in the lives of Jennifer’s parents, possibly even resulting in Jennifer having a different mother or father. Because Marty seems slightly confused by Jennifer at the beginning of Back to the Future Part II, it’s possible he realizes he changed the past to the point that his girlfriend is now physically different.

4. Marty may have actually turned Biff Tannen’s life around.

At the beginning of Back to the Future, we see town bully Biff Tannen pushing around George McFly and demanding he perform Biff's work duties at their office. At the end of the film, Biff is in a subservient role, waxing George’s car as part of his work owning an auto detailing company. But, as Reddit user SatNav points out, that may have been best for Biff. He went from being dependent on George to assist him with his job to owning his own small business.

5. Doc Brown kills Marty.

At the conclusion of Back to the Future, time-traveling Marty returns from 1955 to witness 1985 Marty disappearing in the DeLorean. While that’s presumably Marty heading back to 1955, one theory has posited that Doc Brown is sending 1985 Marty either to his death or exiling him in time to make room for the returning 1955 Marty. Had he allowed 1985 Marty to continue living, he could have gone back to 1955 to meet the Marty already there. That, or two versions of Marty would have been running around Hill Valley in 1985.

Christopher Lloyd has dismissed this theory. “Doc would never send Marty off to his death, in any kind of scenario,” he told the CBC in 2018. “Doc couldn’t live with that.”