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The 25 best Netflix movies to stream right now

From Power of the Dog to All Quiet on the Western Front, these are the best movies to stream on Netflix

Although it’s now only one big player in an even bigger streaming market, Netflix still manages to crank out plenty of stuff to keep its users subscribing. That glut of movies to stream on Netflix is great if all you want is to never get bored, but it can make it difficult to figure out which things are actually worth your time, and which aren’t. If that’s your goal, we’ve got you covered. This list is a combination of great Netflix original movies, and great movies that Netflix is currently housing on its service, and it even includes a few great Netflix action movies. What unites these movies, though, is that they are the very best Netflix movies currently available.

If you’re looking for films to watch on some of Netflix’s competitors, we’ve also found the best Amazon Prime movies, the best Hulu movies, and the best Disney+ movies.

Athena (2022)
Genre Drama
Stars Dali Benssalah, Anthony Bajon, Alexis Manenti
Directed by Romain Gavras

The opening minutes of Athena are some of the most visceral, astonishing filmmaking you’ll ever see. The film, which is set in France, follows three brothers who have their lives upended after their younger sibling dies. The movie is about radicalism, violence, and police brutality, and it’s about the way those who are disadvantaged often seem doomed to remain that way. It’s also a shockingly well-directed action movie filled with breathtaking sequences that only underscore just how shocking the violence on display often is.

Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery (2022)
Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery
Genre Comedy, Crime, Mystery
Stars Daniel Craig, Edward Norton, Janelle Monáe
Directed by Rian Johnson
A sequel to Knives OutGlass Onion takes everything about that first movie that works and heightens it even more. Daniel Craig’s Benoit Blanc returns, but this time with a much bigger budget and an even more elaborate puzzle to unwind. Thanks to an all-star cast that includes Edward Norton, Kate Hudson, Janelle Monae, and Dave Bautista, Glass Onion manages to distinguish itself from its predecessor in part by satirizing a slightly different type of insanely wealthy person. The reveals are all worth the wait, as are the line deliveries from Craig and the rest of the ensemble. 
Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery | Official Trailer | Netflix
All Quiet on the Western Front (2022)
All Quiet on the Western Front
75 %
Genre Action, Drama, History, War
Stars Felix Kammerer, Albrecht Schuch, Aaron Hilmer
Directed by Edward Berger

Netflix took a fairly big swing on this German-language remake of All Quiet on the Western Front, and it paid off with one of the best movies on Netflix. The movie tells the story of a group of young soldiers who enlist to fight on behalf of Germany and ultimately discover the real toll that war takes on those who have to live their lives in the trenches. It’s stunningly filmed, and one of the best entries in the long line of immersive war movies from recent years. The Oscars agreed, and nominated it for nine total awards, including Best Picture. All Quiet on the Western Front is one of the most enduring war novels ever written, and this 2022 version reminds us how horrific war is, no matter what side you’re on.

How to Train Your Dragon (2010)
How to Train Your Dragon
Genre Fantasy, Adventure, Animation, Family
Stars Jay Baruchel, Gerard Butler, Craig Ferguson
Directed by Chris Sanders, Dean DeBlois
It’s a tale as old as time, but that doesn’t make How to Train Your Dragon any less wonderful. Following a young boy who discovers that the dragons his Viking town has been battling for generations aren’t actually evil, the movie really focuses on the relationship between this young boy and his dragon, Toothless. How to Train Your Dragon is still pretty visually impressive all these years after its initial release, and its story of the bond between a boy and his animal is as timeless as they come. Add on an all-time great score, and How to Train Your Dragon becomes a genuine classic.
How to Train Your Dragon (2010) Trailer #1 | Movieclips Classic Trailers
Don't Look Up (2021) new
Don't Look Up
49 %
r 138m
Genre Comedy, Drama, Sci-Fi
Stars Leonardo DiCaprio, Jennifer Lawrence, Meryl Streep
Directed by Adam McKay
An over-the-top satire from Adam McKay, Don’t Look Up is worth a watch simply for the insane number of A-list actors in the cast. The film focuses on two nobody astronomers who discover evidence that a giant comet is headed directly toward Earth and have to find a way to get the world to take them seriously before it’s too late. Directly aimed at the climate crisis and the politics surrounding it, the overall tone is over the top and a little obvious, but its mournful ending is undeniably effective.
Mank (2020)
79 %
r 132m
Genre Drama, History
Stars Gary Oldman, Amanda Seyfried, Lily Collins
Directed by David Fincher
With more Academy Award nominations in 2021 than any other film, Mank was bound to be one of the best Netflix movies from the moment it was first announced. Following Herman J. “Mank” Mankiewicz (Gary Oldman), the film is the story of how the script for Orson Welles’ Citizen Kane came to be. Along the way, we learn about Mank’s debilitating alcoholism, and also the politics of both California and Hollywood, which had a major influence on the script Mank ultimately turned in. Filmed in a style reminiscent of the classic Welles film — which undoubtedly helped it win Oscars for best cinematography and production design — this film is one of David Fincher’s best to date.
Extraction (2020)
56 %
r 116m
Genre Drama, Action, Thriller
Stars Chris Hemsworth, Rudhraksh Jaiswal, Randeep Hooda
Directed by Sam Hargrave
One of the more violent movies you can stream on Netflix, Extraction is also a whole lot of fun. Thanks to its wonderful fight choreography, the film rises above more run-of-the-mill action filmmaking. When mercenary Tyler Rake (Chris Hemsworth) is hired to save an imprisoned warlord’s son, the stakes continue to build gradually as more and more local gunrunners and traffickers learn of the situation. Veteran stunt coordinator/first-time director Sam Hargrave proved with Extraction that he had vision, which easily makes it a contender for one of the best Chris Hemsworth movies — even if you include the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
The Mitchells vs. the Machines (2021)
The Mitchells vs. the Machines
81 %
pg 114m
Genre Animation, Adventure, Comedy, Family, Science Fiction, Action
Stars Abbi Jacobson, Danny McBride, Maya Rudolph
Directed by Michael Rianda
If you’re looking for a great family comedy on Netflix, The Mitchells vs. The Machines fits the bill perfectly. The plot follows a dysfunctional family that winds up having to save the entire planet from a robot invasion. Beneath the comedy, though, is a sweet story about a father and a daughter who can’t quite seem to connect with one another the way they used to. There are plenty of laughs to be had in Mitchells vs. The Machines, as well as some truly inventive animation, but beneath it all is a heartwarming story of family reconnection.
Jim & Andy: The Great Beyond - Featuring a Very Special, Contractually Obligated Mention of Tony Clifton (2017)
Jim & Andy: The Great Beyond - Featuring a Very Special, Contractually Obligated Mention of Tony Clifton
77 %
Genre Documentary, Comedy
Cast Jim Carrey, Danny DeVito, Miloš Forman
This powerful and reality-bending Netflix documentary chronicles the filming and acting processes behind Man on the Moon, a movie that forced Jim Carrey to dive deep into his own psyche years after his spiritual and mental separation from the “character” of Jim Carrey and into the characters of Andy Kaufman and Tony Clifton. Throughout this film, we see detailed behind-the-scenes footage of Carrey on set where he, playing Kaufman, loses his perception of self and even experiences visceral tear-jerking moments with the real people who were close to Kaufman. This is one of the best Jim Carrey movies, but it’s also a great way to learn about him as an actor, a character, and a vessel, all of which meld together in a melancholic display of sheer talent.
Marriage Story (2019)
Marriage Story
94 %
r 137m
Genre Drama
Stars Adam Driver, Scarlett Johansson, Laura Dern
Directed by Noah Baumbach
This Netflix original movie is a beautiful look into just how complicated marriage and family can be, dissecting a husband and wife who are going through a tumultuous divorce. Marriage Story isn’t all doom and gloom, though. It’s really just an emotional story about how divorce changes what a family is without destroying it completely.
Always Be My Maybe (2019)
Always Be My Maybe
64 %
pg-13 101m
Genre Romance, Comedy
Stars Ali Wong, Randall Park, Keanu Reeves
Directed by Nahnatchka Khan
If you’re looking for a good romantic comedy on Netflix, Always Be My Maybe might be the right place to start. The story follows Sasha (Ali Wong) and Marcus (Randall Park), two people who grew up together and eventually grew apart. Everyone assumed they would end up together, and when they reconnect after 15 years apart, they begin to think maybe they are meant to be, after all. Also, Keanu Reeves shows up playing himself.
The Social Dilemma (2020)
The Social Dilemma
78 %
pg-13 94m
Genre Documentary, Drama
Stars Skyler Gisondo, Kara Hayward, Vincent Kartheiser
Directed by Jeff Orlowski
A Netflix documentary that feels more terrifying every day, The Social Dilemma is a look inside how and why tech giants like Facebook, Twitter, and Google operate the way they do. You get to hear from tech experts and some of the people behind these platforms as they discuss the negative impact of the attention-grabbing algorithms that they themselves created. After all of those testimonials, you might begin to appreciate exactly why everything in modern America feels so broken.
Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975)
Monty Python and the Holy Grail
91 %
pg 91m
Genre Adventure, Comedy, Fantasy
Stars Graham Chapman, John Cleese, Eric Idle
Directed by Terry Gilliam, Terry Jones
This classic 1970s British comedy from Monty Python, considered to be one of the best comedies of all time, follows King Arthur (Graham Chapman) and his Knights of the Round Table as they embark on a low-budget and absolutely absurd search for the Holy Grail. The silly obstacles these knights encounter are numerous, but every one of the movie’s small segments has become beloved in and of itself, and they flow together beautifully.
The Power of the Dog (2021)
The Power of the Dog
89 %
Genre Drama, Western
Stars Benedict Cumberbatch, Kirsten Dunst, Jesse Plemons
Directed by Jane Campion
Netflix has yet to take home an Oscar for Best Picture, but The Power of the Dog came pretty close, and is one of the best movies on Netflix. The movie, which tells the story of a repressed cowboy (Benedict Cumberbatch) in 1920s Montana who lashes out at his brother’s new wife (Kirsten Dunst) is immaculately made, and filled with great performances from Cumberbatch, Dunst, and the rest of its ensemble cast. Directed by veteran Jane Campion, The Power of the Dog is a singular vision of male angst, and that’s part of what makes it so endlessly compelling. 
The Lost Daughter (2021)
The Lost Daughter
86 %
Genre Drama
Stars Olivia Colman, Dakota Johnson, Jessie Buckley
Directed by Maggie Gyllenhaal

Maggie Gyllenhaal’s first directorial effort was one of the best films of 2021, and it didn’t hurt that she had Olivia Colman by her side. Telling the story of a 40-something Harvard professor (Colman) who goes on vacation and remembers her time raising two daughters, The Lost Daughter is about the difficulty of trying to be a person and a mother, and it’s remarkably prickly about how taxing motherhood can be. Colman is a standout in the central role, but she’s surrounded by excellent performances from the likes of Jessie Buckley and Dakota Johnson as well.

tick, tick...BOOM! (2021)
tick, tick...BOOM!
74 %
Genre Drama
Stars Andrew Garfield, Alexandra Shipp, Robin de Jesús
Directed by Lin-Manuel Miranda

Adapting a musical of the same name, tick, tick…BOOM! tells the story of Jonathan Larson (Andrew Garfield) in the years before he wrote Rent. With sharp direction from Lin-Manuel Miranda and an incredible soundtrack of Larson originals, the movie has more than enough frenetic energy to tell its story of a struggling artist with winsome verve. Andrew Garfield’s incredible central performance is the icing on the cake of this vibrant musical.

tick, tick...BOOM! | Official Trailer | Netflix
The Irishman (2019)
The Irishman
94 %
Genre Crime, Drama, History
Stars Robert De Niro, Al Pacino, Joe Pesci
Directed by Martin Scorsese

One of many late-period Martin Scorsese masterpieces, The Irishman tells the story of a mid-level gangster (Robert De Niro) who befriends Jimmy Hoffa (Al Pacino) and ultimately plays a role in his death. In Scorsese’s hands, though, this becomes an examination of the way one man alienates everyone around him, and ultimately finds himself old, friendless, and totally alone, stuck in a nursing home trying to convince everyone that his life as a gangster is worth remembering.

The Irishman | Official Trailer | Netflix
It Follows (2014)
It Follows
83 %
Genre Horror, Mystery
Stars Maika Monroe, Keir Gilchrist, Daniel Zovatto
Directed by David Robert Mitchell

The kind of horror movie that only comes around every couple of years, It Follows has a remarkably simple premise that it executes on beautifully. The film follows a young girl (Maika Monroe) who discovers she is haunted by a spectral presence that is transferred through sex. As she recruits her friends to take on the force following her, we get to watch along as she tries to find a way to defeat the ghostly presence without simply giving it to someone else.

The Disciple (2020)
The Disciple
83 %
Genre Drama, Music
Stars Aditya Modak, Arun Dravid, Sumitra Bhave
Directed by Chaitanya Tamhane
Following the story of a dedicated musician (Aditya Modak) in India who begins to question whether he’ll ever achieve the levels of greatness that he’s long aspired to, The Disciple is a beautiful story about what it means to follow your dreams, only to realize that you may never achieve them. In its way, The Disciple is a deeply aching movie about the pursuit of great art, and it’s quietly sorrowful without becoming oppressively bleak. 
The Disciple | Official Trailer | Chaitanya Tamhane, Vivek Gomber | Marathi Film | Netflix
Raw (2016)
81 %
Genre Drama, Horror
Stars Garance Marillier, Ella Rumpf, Rabah Nait Oufella
Directed by Julia Ducournau
A wonderfully perverse movie, Raw is a horror film about a young veterinary student (Garance Marillier) who gradually discovers that she has a taste for human blood. The movie is wildly indulgent and seems to take pleasure in the boundaries it frequently and gleefully crosses. Underneath all of that, Raw is all about the urges that we can’t control, and whether it even makes sense to try in a world so filled with temptation. 
RAW | 2017 | Trailer HD, Julia Ducournau
Da 5 Bloods (2020)
Da 5 Bloods
82 %
Genre War, Drama
Stars Delroy Lindo, Jonathan Majors, Clarke Peters
Directed by Spike Lee
Spike Lee has proven his enduring power with his recent string of successes, and Da 5 Bloods is chief among them. Telling the story of four Black Vietnam veterans who return to the country decades later to uncover a treasure that they buried decades ago, Da 5 Bloods is unafraid of its cinematic touchstones, but is also thrilling in its own right. With a wonderful central performance from Delroy Lindo, Da 5 Bloods is the kind of provocative, thrilling, fun movie we don’t get enough of anymore. 
If Beale Street Could Talk (2018)
If Beale Street Could Talk
87 %
Genre Romance, Drama
Stars KiKi Layne, Stephan James, Regina King
Directed by Barry Jenkins
Barry Jenkins is one of America’s great filmmakers, and If Beale Street Could Talk proved that to be true. Telling the story of a Black couple who are torn apart by people and systems designed to make their lives miserable, the movie finds plenty of space within its tragic story for joy and love. Thanks to remarkable central performances from Stephan James and Kiki Layne, as well as stellar work from Regina King in a supporting role, If Beale Street Could Talk will make you swoon, and that’s before we even get to Nicholas Britell’s heart-wrenching score.
The Wonder (2022)
The Wonder
Genre Mystery, Thriller, Drama
Stars Florence Pugh, Kíla Lord Cassidy, Tom Burke
Directed by Sebastián Lelio
Anytime Florence Pugh signs onto anything it’s probably worth checking out, and that’s definitely true of The Wonder. The movie, which follows an English nurse who is called to Ireland to investigate the case of a young girl who claims she hasn’t eaten in four months, is the kind of slow burn that leaves you immensely satisfied in the end. The mystery at the movie’s center is compelling enough, but The Wonder becomes irresistible when you add a performer like Pugh into the mix.
Wendell & Wild (2022)
Wendell & Wild
Genre Animation, Comedy, Fantasy, Adventure
Stars Keegan-Michael Key, Jordan Peele, Angela Bassett
Directed by Henry Selick
Stop-motion animation is painstaking and difficult, and no one is better at it than Henry Sellick. Wendell & Wild is Sellick’s first movie in 13 years, and it didn’t disappoint. The film is brimming with visual ideas, but that helps to set it apart from much of what animation has been in Sellick’s absence. And, thanks to some creative help from Jordan Peele, Wendell & Wild also includes some fairly weighty ideas about incarceration and racism, which only reinforces the precision Sellick and his team have in executing on their animation style.
His House (2020)
His House
Genre Drama, Horror, Thriller
Stars Sope Dirisu, Wunmi Mosaku, Matt Smith
Directed by Remi Weekes
Because of their relatively low budgets, great horror movies can seem to sometimes come out of nowhere. In the case of His House, the movie came from first-time feature Remi Weekes, who chose to tell a story about a pair of South Sudanese refugees who are attempting to resettle in the U.K. The house they move into seems to be haunted, but that’s not the only thing keeping them up at night. What His House is really about is the horrors of the refugee experience and the trauma that these refugees carry with them long after they’ve been resettled.
HIS HOUSE | Official Trailer | Netflix

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Joe Allen
Joe Allen is a freelance culture writer based in upstate New York. His work has been published in The Washington Post, The…
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