We’re excited about the future of digital currency here at Genesis Mining, and we want you to be too. We’ve collected our top ten favorite documentaries on Bitcoin for education and entertainment.
Learn about Satoshi Nakamoto’s paper that founded Bitcoin, and the mystery behind the anonymous creator. Journey along with a couple attempting to use only Bitcoin for 100 days. Get an education on the history of money and fiscal policy. Discover early innovators in the space and major events along Bitcoin’s timeline. See how Bitcoin is comparable to the early internet and hear about the ways it could reform society as we know it.
Since the world of Bitcoin is rapidly changing, we ordered these chronologically. Most documentaries are free to watch, but some need to be rented; we include where to find them.
Grab some popcorn and enjoy!
The Rise and Rise of Bitcoin
2014 | 96 min.
Daniel, a thirty-something database administrator, is a Bitcoin enthusiast and mines Bitcoin in his basement. The Rise And Rise of Bitcoin follows him as he finds out more about Bitcoin, from interviewing early adopters in the space like Charlie Shrem of BitInstant and Jered Kenna of TradeHill, to his experience purchasing goods with Bitcoin from vendors, to buying more rigs for his basement mining operation. The documentary only follows him for a year (2013), but gets his reactions as major events in Bitcoin history happen.
Why we like it: Following Daniel as our guide makes Bitcoin personal and accessible.
Where to watch: YouTube, Tubi, iTunes, Amazon, Google Play, Vudu
The Bitcoin Gospel
2015 | 50 min.
Like The Rise and Rise of Bitcoin, The Bitcoin Gospel zooms in on select individuals in the Bitcoin space, including Roger Ver, a Bitcoin evangelist; Marshall Long, one of the first Bitcoin miners; Brett Scott, a financial activist; and Izabella Kaminska, a Financial Times journalist. This documentary gives us a sense of how Bitcoin works on the ground, its origin story, and how it can be a major disruptor in global economics — but it also brings up some of the major drawbacks of the system as well.
Why we like it: Individual stories bring Bitcoin down to an everyday level.
Where you can watch it: Tubi, YouTube
Bitcoin: The End of Money As We Know It
2015 | 60 min.
This is the crash course in monetary history and fiscal policy you never learned in school — and it’s not boring. Starting with the first government bailout in ancient Rome, this documentary traces the creation of currency in early civilizations, to the evolution of debit and credit under the Medici family, to the creation of the Federal Reserve in 1913, to Nixon’s suspension of the gold standard in 1971, to 2008’s recession. What’s the point? To see how banks are inherently flawed in how they conduct business, and to offer Bitcoin as an innovation and evolution past traditional institutions.
Why we like it: History! And when you know the failures of history, you know how to innovate for the future.
Where you can watch it: YouTube, Vimeo
The Bitcoin Story
2015 | 35 min.
If you only have a half hour, start here for a Bitcoin 101 with early experts in the field. Who is Satoshi Nakamoto and what was in his white paper? How does Bitcoin work? How do you mine something that’s digital? What problems is Bitcoin trying to solve? Who would an early adopter of a new currency be? This is before VC investments in Bitcoin and more widespread understanding, but it’s great to see the early thoughts and excitement over the future.
Why we like it: Great crash course in the evolution of Bitcoin.
Where you can watch it: Amazon
Banking On Bitcoin
2016 | 84 min.
Banking on Bitcoin tells the story of Bitcoin’s history, from its roots in 1990s cypherpunk activity, to Satoshi Nakamoto’s white paper, to the first Bitcoin exchange, to the Silk Road fiasco, to NYC’s failed attempts at regulation. With a wide range of voices from the cryptocurrency, tech, finance, and journalism world, this documentary focuses on individual stories of the key players of Bitcoin’s rise, and with engaging animations that explain key concepts, Banking on Bitcoin is a great introduction to learning about the people creating, innovating, sacrificing, and fighting for Bitcoin’s place in the world.
Why we like it: Great storytelling, engaging animations, and a variety of voices makes this documentary both entertaining and educational.
Where to watch: Hulu, iTunes, Amazon, Tubi, Google Play, Vudu
Life on Bitcoin
2017 | 94 min.
Newlyweds Austin and Beccy had a goal for their first 100 days of marriage: They would live solely on Bitcoin. Life on Bitcoin follows their journey as they try to figure out paying for everyday things (they had to stop their parents from dropping off food!) and try to figure out a trip around the world. They did this experiment in 2013, and while they found many places that didn’t take Bitcoin then, they were able to educate restaurants, grocery stores, gas stations, and even their landlord on how to use it.
Why we like it: It’s one of the more unique documentaries here, and, while dated, shows the everyday reality of new innovation adoption.
Where you can watch it: VidAngel
The Blockchain and Us
2017 | 31 min.
Could the blockchain be an invention that’s as revolutionary as the Wright brothers taking flight? This award-winning documentary is short on technical specs about the blockchain, but long on hope, inspiration, and application. Through a series of mini-interviews, industry leaders in business, financial services, technology, and government discuss the various ways in which blockchain technology can benefit and advance society in areas of trust, identity protection, and security while solving issues of financial equality.
Why we like it: You won’t learn how the blockchain works here, but it’s great to see so many people from so many different industries be excited about the future of blockchain.
Where you can watch it: blockchain-documentary.com, YouTube
Trust Machine: The Story of Blockchain
2018 | 84 min.
This documentary travels around the world to look at how blockchain technology is being used for change: providing identity tokens for refugees, creating energy-shares in localized neighborhoods, reimagining how artists get paid for their work, giving people in emerging markets new options to earn a living, and more. It’s also a documentary about the internet and its evolution since the mid-1990s, what it means to have a connected network open to all, and what happens when governments try to regulate innovation. (Also, Genesis Mining makes an appearance!)
Why we like it: It shows us blockchain technology in action, and its infinite possibilities.
Where you can watch it: iTunes, Amazon, YouTube, Google Play
Bit x Bit: In Bitcoin We Trust
2019 | 77 min.
Through interviews, animations, and pop culture nods, Bit x Bit is a look into all things Bitcoin, where leaders in the space — some from the early years of Bitcoin, but many new to it — tell the story of Bitcoin’s founding, from how it was initially considered “nerd money” to how it has become a real currency option for the unbanked. Because it’s one of the more recent documentaries on our list, the film shows how Bitcoin evolved past events from other documentaries into the broader adoption phase it hoped to achieve.
Why we like it: A comprehensive, up-to-date, entertaining look at all things Bitcoin.
Where you can watch it: Amazon, iTunes, YouTube, Google Play, Vudu
Cryptopia: Bitcoin, Blockchain, and the Future of the Internet
2020 | 86 min.
Torsten Hoffman, who made Bitcoin: The End of Money As We Know It on our list, returns with his search for what the state of crypto — or the dream of it — is today. He finds that Bitcoin and blockchain offer different dreams to different people, but that no one can agree on what the new evolving Cryptopia should be. Could it include everything? As the most recent documentary here, we get the most updated information on the state of Bitcoin, including the Bitcoin/Bitcoin cash split, as well as information on Ethereum and other coins and blockchains.
Why we like it: It’s fascinating to watch how something comparable to the early internet is evolving before our eyes today.
Where you can watch it: cryptopiafilm.com