Lazy Sunday afternoon and you are looking for entertaining or interesting digital nomad movies or documentaries to watch? Look no further! This list will give you some great ideas and inspiring stories for your location-independent lifestyle.
The Best Digital Nomad Movies and Documentaries
I’ve been wanting to write this blog post for a very long time. However, I simply couldn’t find enough footage that fits the concept of the digital nomad lifestyle. Sure, there are plenty of travel movies out there (and I’ve collected a list with the best travel movies, too, lol). But I wanted something that suits this lifestyle even better.
To be honest, I’ve spent quite some time researching this topic again and again. Unfortunately, there is still not too much material on the topic.
That’s why I included anything that is somehow related to it as well. From the travel aspect and minimalism to entrepreneurship and what matters in life. Have a look and find interesting digital nomad movies and documentaries based on that lifestyle.
1. One Way Ticket: The Digital Nomad Documentary
This is one of the very few digital nomad documentaries out there and potentially the most popular one. It shows the rise of this lifestyle and how people actually profit from all the advantages a location-independent lifestyle has to offer.
The film features people like Tim Ferriss (“The 4-Hour Workweek”) and Mark Manson (“The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck”) or founders like Matt Mullenweg (Automattic/Wordpress) and Wade Foster (Zapier).
You can stream the ONE WAY TICKET on iTunes, Google Play or Amazon for $9.99.
2. The New Nomads
Quick to watch for the short motivational boost in between: The New Nomads is a series of 10 short videos that you can watch on YouTube. It shows how 9 individuals and couples left their normal lives behind to fulfill their dream: Traveling the world.
This production proves that nearly everyone can go on long-term trips or even become perpetual travelers. You don’t need to be rich or extremely skilled in an area. If travel is your passion, you can make it work.
This sequence was filmed in 2013 and features the early stages of one of today’s most popular travel bloggers that some of you surely know: Dave and Deb of The PlanetD!
3. The Wireless Generation
The Wireless Generation is another documentation based entirely on the digital nomad lifestyle. This production follows the life of 18 individuals who work online and travel the world at the same time.
These people are traveling and living across five continents and have all kinds of different jobs and ways to make money online – from the day trader living in Colombia to the family traveling across Asia building websites for clients.
A great inside into the remote lifestyle that can be watched on VHX for $14.99.
4. Minimalism: A Documentary About the Important Things
Many digital nomads are some way or the other living a rather minimalistic life. When you are constantly traveling, you can’t bring too many items with you. You usually focus on the most important things, both physically and mentally.
This documentation by The Minimalists, Joshua Fields Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus, shows what materialism has made of us. How we lose ourselves by chasing physical goods and how our lives would change for the better if we give up on that.
You can watch this inspiring documentary on Netflix, iTunes, Google Play, and Vimeo.
5. The Reality of #VanLife
Instagram shows you pictures of all those nomads traveling around the world in cozy and fancy reconverted vans? The documentary “The Reality of #VanLife” shows you what this lifestyle really is about. From all the adventures to the deficiencies.
Van traveler Forrest Stevens takes you on a journey with him to meet other road life enthusiasts and to give you a real insight. It might not always be as glamorous as the Instagram world wants you to believe but it surely has its perks.
Watch this 40-minute documentary on YouTube or on Top Documentary Films for free.
6. We The Tiny House People: Small Homes, Tiny Flats & Wee Shelters
This topic fits perfectly into the concept of minimalism and van life: Tiny Houses. Focusing on simplicity, self-sufficiency, and happiness, the idea behind tinyhouses surely is of interest to many digital nomads, too.
Kirsten Dirksen shows us the world of people living in trailers, small studios, riverboats, tool sheds or specifically made tiny houses. See what it’s like to live on a relatively small space but still have everything you need.
Although this 3-part production is from 2012, it still gives some great insights into this movement.
7. The StartUp Kids
Getting away from the lifestyle and taking a look at a few more business-related movies and documentaries. Many digital nomads are startup founders. And with all the possibilities today, you can do so at a young age. A very young age.
This documentary shows you many successful startup founders, e.g. Vimeo founder Zach Klein, who made millions of dollars before they even turned 20. A highly inspiring film that proves what opportunities you have if you only make the first step and start.
Watch The StartUp Kids on iTunes or Amazon.
8. Generation Startup
Another great documentary on the young entrepreneurship life. This production follows 6 recent college graduates, completely inexperienced, on their way to their own startup company.
It shows the fears, the risks, the failures, the overwhelm with tasks and responsibilities. But it also shows where passion and willpower can lead you – to many small wins and the ultimate success. As Arianna Huffington says: “An exhilarating and uplifting look at entrepreneurship”.
You can watch the Generation Startup on Netflix, iTunes, Google Play, or Amazon.
9. Capital C
Now you are feeling motivated and want to start your own business, too, but have no idea how to fund it? Check out this documentary on crowdfunding and crowdsourcing and learn how this phenomenon came into place.
Crowdfunding allows every geek, every artist and creator to get his or her business off the ground. Even if they normally wouldn’t stand a chance to get the necessary tools to fulfill their dreams. Learn more about this concept and get inspired by its possibilities.
You can watch Capital C on YouTube for $2.99 or on Google Play.
10. A Map for Saturday
A classic. Although this documentary is from 2006, it is still as valid as ever before. It reveals the world of long-term solo travelers who follow their dreams and travel the world.
When you are a backpacker, every day feels like Saturday. Every day is a new adventure. A new rollercoaster ride of experiences and emotions. Follow these travelers of all ages and backgrounds through Australia, Nepal or Vietnam. See what they see and learn what the backpacking life really is about.
Check out A Map for Saturday on Amazon.
11. Gringo Trails
Gringo Trails is another digital nomad documentary, that focuses on the traveling part. But this time, it shows the negative impact tourism has.
It follows traveler through South America, Africa, and Asia, reveals their stories and their experiences along the way. Although many locals today are dependent on tourists as a source of income, mass tourism also destroys the local culture. There are tons of trash everywhere, flora gets harmed, fauna disturbed, and traditions lose their authenticity.
A movie that definitely makes you reconsider our travel behavior. You can rent or buy it on Amazon or check out the dates for upcoming public screenings and broadcasts on their website.
12. Office Space
Let’s move on to the digital nomad movies. Office Space is definitely a classic that many office workers can identify with. Although it’s from 1999, the main message is still valid today.
It shows the typical work-life in a software company in the 1990s. Most employees are fed up with their job. The meaningless tasks they perform every day, the mindless routines, and the non-existent appreciation they receive from their bosses. Needless to say, they question this kind of life and start to wonder why they are doing this and want to break free. Probably sounds familiar to many of us.
You can watch this comedy on YouTube for $3.99 or get it from Google Play.
13. The Secret Life of Walter Mitty
And another movie of someone who can think of better things in life than his not-so-fun office life. When Walter Mitty’s job is threatened, he escapes into a world of daydreams. While doing so, he goes on an international journey full of action, heroism, and romance.
During the movie, you get to see stunning footage from around the world that probably gets everyone dreaming of traveling, too. The good thing is that you don’t need to daydream about it. As a digital nomad, you can go out and create your own adventures in real life.
You can watch this Ben Stiller movie on the usual platforms: Netflix, Google Play, YouTube, etc.
14. Up in the Air
This is another digital nomad movie many of us can relate to as it shows one of the biggest disadvantages of being a long-term or frequent traveler. The story shows a businessman, portrayed by George Clooney, who spends most of his days flying around the USA for his job, chasing one meeting after another.
Although he loves this busy lifestyle, he eventually realizes that he is missing out on a normal life that people around him have. Above everything, he is missing out on relationships of any type.
You can find Up in the Air on Netflix, Google Play and YouTube for $2.99.
15. Into the Wild
Need another film that triggers your lust for adventure? Into The Wild will surely do so. It shows an elite student who recently graduated and, when it comes to his parents, should live the standard life: car, good job, family.
But Christopher is not keen on that. With only the bare necessities he starts hitchhiking to Alaska, always on the hunt for adventure. He seeks freedom, new experiences and wants to be close to nature.
The movie is based on a real-life story which makes it even more touching.
16. The Bucket List
The Bucket List is a movie that people should watch better sooner than later. It shows two terminally ill men who decide to leave the hospital and start an epic road trip during which they tick off all of the things they always wanted to do and see in life.
This is a great reminder that we need to appreciate our health and life as long as we can. There is no time to postpone the things we want to do. We need to live in the present, enjoy our lives every single day and focus on what really matters. A mindset that many digital nomads share.
A comedy-drama with Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman that you can watch on Netflix.
17. The Way
And one more movie that inspires you to travel more often and enjoy every moment. The main character, portrayed by Martin Sheen, travels to Spain to pick up the body of his dead son, who died trying to walk the famous El Camino de Santiago.
He decides to do the pilgrimage himself, taking the ashes of his son with him. Along the way, he meets many different people, makes new experiences and is on the emotional rollercoaster ride of his life. In the end, he finally understands why his son loved traveling so much and why he decided to live a life so much different from his own.
Get this movie on Amazon, iTunes or Netflix. But make sure you have some tissues around. Many tissues.
That’s a Wrap!
As you can see, this list contains many different kinds of digital nomad movies and documentaries with topics centered on location-independent life. I’m definitely waiting for the day we get a Hollywood blockbuster with Jennifer Lawrence doing adventurous visa runs in Thailand or Chris Hemsworth working on the ultimate crypto crime from a fancy coworking space in Bali.
Judging from the growing popularity of this lifestyle, this can’t be too long ;)
Until then, we can get our inspiration and information from the just mentioned digital nomad movies and documentaries.
Do you know any other film footage that might be of interest to fellow (aspiring) nomads and remote workers? Let me know in the comment section below!