Looking for an ultimate list of the best films on Netflix? We've rounded up 35 top movies to watch on this best streaming service this month. We've picked some stuff for kids, lots of comedies, a range of classics and some hidden gems.
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Best films on Netflix
Not got Netflix and deciding whether to subscribe? See our pick of the best streaming services.
Best Netflix classics and blockbusters
Netflix has so many of those films that you think everyone but you has seen. From big budget Hollywood epics, to those thought-provoking hits that people are always telling you to watch, find a crowdpleaser below.
1. Groundhog Day (1993)
A classic that everyone needs to watch once (then again, and again, and again) stars Bill Murray as a weatherman stuck in a seemingly infinite loop covering the same day – Groundhog Day or 2nd February. It is your somewhat predictable story of a selfish, horrible man turning good from being put in a bad situation, but it is funny, well-cast and a must-see.
2. Ghost (1990)
Everyone who hasn't watched Ghost thinks they have because of that scene with the potter's wheel. But for all the parodies, this is a actually a clever film about a romance that transcends the living world. And it has Whoopi Goldberg in who we love.
3. Dallas Buyers Club (2013)
Dallas Buyers Club is the true story of a Texan rodeo cowboy, Ron Woodroof, taking on big pharma and the unfairness of the American health system. Set in 1985, Ron (played by Matthew McConaughey) must not only face an AIDS diagnosis, but all of the isolation and misinformation that comes with it. Ostracised by family and friends, he finds purpose dealing a cocktail of unapproved drugs and nutritional supplements at local gay bars – drugs that have considerably extended his 30 day life expectancy. It is heartbreaking in places, but seeing people based on true to life characters overcoming prejudice and tragedy is uplifting, too.
4. The Hunger Games (2012)
A dark, dystopian, adventure film which presents a world in which a totalitarian state dictates and makes teenagers fight to the death for TV entertainment. The Hunger Games film was released in 2012, based on a novel by Suzanne Collins, and was snatched up immediately by an audience of all ages. Exposing the dark underbelly of reality TV in a way that is palatable and accessible to a young audience was what gained this film a whole load of Teen's Choice Awards (as well as MTV and People's Choice awards). Basically, it's a must-watch and Netflix is here to help.
5. Clueless (1995)
Set in a Beverly Hills high school, Clueless is centred around our hapless heroine Cher who is on a mission to help a fellow student with a series of fashion and life makeovers. Loosely based on Jane Austen's Emma, the film pokes fun at the social hierarchy of highschool (and the world beyond it) for an off-beat comedy with a stellar cast. Young Paul Rudd is our highlight.
6. Lion (2016)
Based on the true story and memoir of Saroo Brierley (A Long Way Home), Lion is a film which follows the riveting and tragic story of a young man who goes on a quest to find his family in India from whom he was separated 25 years earlier. It is brilliantly acted and powerfully impactful; Dev Patel portrays the sentiment of displacement captured in Brierley's novel so well, showing that despite living a life of comfort and happiness, his character cannot be at peace until he comes to understand the true meaning of the word 'home'. It'll bring you to tears!
7. Mother (2017)
Jennifer Lawrence and Javier Bardem play a couple whose life is torn apart by a series of uninvited guests. The story is set in a beautiful home they are renovating, but from the first minute there is a tense atmosphere you can't shake, that only gets tenser throughout. If you love a thriller this is just that – but really set apart from your standard psychopath or unknown villain fare.
8. About Time (2013)
Richard Curtis fills his films with characters he "knows and likes", which is what makes this film such a cosy, feel-good choice. Being let in on the secret of time travel by his father (Bill Nighy), the main character of this film uses his new-found capacity to find love. It's silly and it's lovely, as are all of the best RomComs (and Richard Curtis' are famously the best of the best). You'll laugh and cry in equal, light-hearted measure and that's why this is the movie for a rainy day... 'cos let's face it, you've been scrolling for an eternity to find one.
9. The Wizard of Oz
Let the kids escape into the magical world of flying monkeys, talking scarecrows and scaredy-cat lions in this iconic musical that’s like no other. When a tornado rips through Kansas, Dorothy – played by a very young Judy Garland in 1939 – her house and her dog Toto, are whisked away to the magical land of Oz. On a quest to get back home, Dorothy follows the yellow brick road and meets some quirky characters, forming unlikely but lovely friendships along the way. From witches and wizards to magical red shoes, it's a fun, vibrant and creative musical.
Not much beats the 90s Jumanji. When two friends discover a board game, they don't realise its unimaginable powers, until Alan is magically transported into the jungles of Jumanji. 26 years later, another two children uncover the same board game, freeing Alan (who is now a grown man) and the team combine to try to beat the games powerful forces. An enchanting, fantasy, and in parts quite scary story, starring Kirsten Dunst as a child, and the legend that is Robin Williams.
Best Netflix hidden gems
Netflix not only champions independent film makers, but creates a platform for films that may have had limited box-office appeal but are still well worth a watch. They might not have the shiny budgets of some of the above, but they still deserve the accolades.
11. Marriage Story (2019)
Sincerely acted by Scarlett Johansson and Adam Driver, Marriage Story features a divorcing couple trying to keep their family together, while the legal system encourages them to pull it apart. It is the very opposite of a RomCom, but within it are moments that are truly romantic and quite funny. Probably not one to watch after being stuck inside with your spouse for too long mind you...
12. Cargo (2018)
A terrifying pandemic (we said some were a bit close to the bone) means a father must battle to ensure his daughter survives. Martin Freeman plays the lead in this and is incredibly adept at taking you on every painstaking tragedy that hits him in the journey.
13. Roma (2018)
This Oscar winner follows the life of a young domestic worker living in a turbulent 1970s Mexico. Love, betrayal, poverty and politics are all covered as part of the fairly simple storyline. It is all black and white – each scene a cinematic wonder that doesn't need colour as the characters really pull you in, so be set for an emotional rollercoaster.
14. Paddleton (2019)
Two neighbours navigate a terminal illness diagnosis and what ensues is not a tale of doom and sadness, but the most uplifting story of friendship. Starring Ray Romano and Mark Duplass, Paddleton is often laugh out loud funny, but the description of a 'bittersweet bromance' sums it up pretty well. Give it a go – it is one hour and 29 minutes you won't regret.
15. Call Me By Your Name (2017)
In Italy in the 1980's, Elio (played by Timothée Chalamet) falls for his father's research assistant (played by Armie Hammer) who is staying with them for the summer. A coming of age film with a stunning soundtrack –thanks Sufjan Stevens – beautiful scenery and a life-changing crush, Call Me By Your Name is more sophisticated than your average teen love story.
16. The Big Short (2015)
Christian Bale, Steve Carell and Ryan Gosling play a group of finance experts who pre-empt the recession of the mid-2000s, betting against the banks and as a result, becoming filthy rich. It isn't your typical Hollywood style hustle movie – anyone genuinely interested in how and why the US faced an economic crash during a time it should be flourishing, will learn a lot. It is witty, funny and don't let the educational element put you off as it is incredibly entertaining.
17. Creep (2014)
A videographer accepts a job filming a client (Mark Duplass) in a remote lodge. He soon starts to feel uncomfortable with some of the client's requests – as does the viewer. And we will leave it at that. I have never laughed so uncomfortably at a film. It is rated 15 so that will give you some indication of what could be involved, but Creep keeps you on your toes until the last minute. A brilliant indie film that deserves far more recognition than it has.
Best Netflix films for kids
Looking for a Netflix film the whole family can enjoy? Then look no further.
18. Peter Rabbit (2018)
If you have fond childhood memories of Beatrix Potter's endearing little bunnies and ducks, this one is for you as well as the kids! This modern take on the timeless story is alarmingly realistic, with a mixture of both live human action and CGI talking rabbits.
Peter Rabbit himself is brought to life by James Corden's hilarious voice, and combined with an upbeat soundtrack and beautiful countryside views, it's a visual delight that'll warm you heart and have you laughing out loud. Snapshots of the original illustrations will give you all the nostalgic feels, too. Oh and did we mention the kids will love it? Flopsy, Mopsy, Cottontail and Peter are as cute as ever and ready to make your whole family smile.
19. BFG (2016)
A Roald Dahl classic, reborn by Steven Spielberg in 2016, about a young orphan called Sophie who's saved by a giant that should have eaten her (a Big Friendly Giant, that is). It's one that'll have the kids hooked and intrigued right from the first few minutes. The iconic tale is brought to life by amazing CGI, making the dream catching, lonely and emotional friendly giant seem more real than ever before.
20. Gnomeo and Juliet
In case you didn't guess, it's a child-friendly retelling of Shakespeare's Romeo & Juliet, but with the quirky twist that all the main characters are garden gnomes! A truly imaginative, clever and endearing film. The Capulets and Montagues are swapped for the red gnomes and the blue gnomes, but the forbidden romance and long-standing family fued remains the same. Put this on for the kids and we bet you won't be able to tear your eyes from the screen either, and you may even shed a tear or two (yes, crying at gnomes is weird, but it's a difficult love affair too and we won't tell anyone).
21. Matilda (1996)
Every child needs to watch this. Roald Dahl’s characters have become household names, from Miss Trunchbull to Bruce Bogtrotter, and the legacy that is Matilda simply must be passed on to the next generation. Matilda is a very intelligent girl, whose supposed role models – her family and head teacher, are ignorant bullies who don’t care for her at all. She discovers that she has magical powers, and puts these to good use to help her friends. A feel-good story with being a good, kind and caring person at its centre. You’ll finish feeling all warm inside, and so will the kids.
'It's a hard knock life, for us! It's a hard knock liiiife, for us!' Just one of the songs in this timeless musical that'll have you and the kids singing and dancing round the house for sure. While modern remakes are all well and good, nothing will match the original with the ginger, curly haired Annie running round the streets of 1930s New York. The orphan's dreams come true when someone asks to adopt her. But he's not just anyone, he's a billionaire! Whisked into an unbelievably different world, Annie never looses sight of what really matters. A heart-warming and humbling family watch that you can't help but love.
23. Over the Hedge
When a turtle, squirrel and some hedgehogs wake up after their long winter of hibernation, they discover that a human community has not only invaded their space, but they've also created a never ending bush barrier to keep the animals out of their precious gardens. The raccoons introduce the idea of 'foraging' from the humans, but is this a good idea? An interesting take on the problem of wildlife conservation, and a cute and funny story for kids of all ages.
24. Gangsta Granny
A David Walliams masterpiece. At first, Ben hates spending time with his boring granny, but when he discovers that she used to be a gangster, everything changes. The pair set to work on a mission steal the Crown jewels from the Tower of London. A brilliant comedy that sees a rejuvenated relationship as the two characters become best of friends.
25. Tall Girl
This one's for the early teens, and is a great reflection on body image at the age when they need it most. Jodi has always been the tallest girl in school, as a 6 foot 1 and a half 16 year old who's so uncomfortable with her height, navigating the world of dating is even trickier than normal. As she falls for the Swedish exchange student who's even taller than her, the support of her best friends and sister make her realise that that she's so much to her than just her height. She learns to throw comparison to the ground, gains new confidence and begins to love herself. After years of slouching, she's finally able to stand up tall and own her own body. A love triangle dilemma and inspiring watch for any teen (or any adult for that matter)!
These little guys are weirdly cute. A minion's sole purpose is to help out villains, but with no master to serve, they're left bored and depressed. One resourceful minion sets out to find a new master with two recruits in tow, and they head to New York. Soon they find a villain who takes them all to England, where their next mission begins... A hilarious, quirky watch for all ages.
27. My Neighbor Totoro (1988)
When all seems wrong in the world, My Neighbor Totoro is an hour and a half of loveliness and slightly mad escapism. It tells the tale of two young girls who have just moved to the Japanese countryside to be closer to their ill mother. They befriend a strange creature (apparently a troll but looks like a massive rabbit) called Totoro and magical adventures ensue. It's a bit silly, it's a bit childish, but it is very very sweet and like all Studio Ghibli offerings, it is well drawn and scored.
If you like this, follow it up with Spirited Away which has just been added – another fantasy tale from Studio Ghibli.
28. Nanny McPhee (2005)
The film you need is Nanny McPhee. (Ha... you'll get it when you watch the film). If there was ever a duvet-day that will have the kids giggling without having you snoring, it's this high-spirited fairytale like story featuring Colin Firth, Emma Thompson and a whole load of naughty children. Emma Thompson plays the wart-ridden old super-Nanny, employed by magic to teach Firth's unruly gaggle of mad children how to behave. The plot contains magic, laughter and bonkers kids... probably somewhat like your own home. As children's films go, you shouldn't miss this one.
29. Shrek (2001)... Shrek 2 (2004)... Shrek the Third (2007)... Shrek Forever After (2010)
Shrek is one of those films that is loved by all ages. When it came out, believed to be intended for children, many parents were sat with their little ones howling with laughter (at all the bits made for the kids not to clock onto). We're delighted to inform you that you can enjoy a Shrek movie marathon, if you so wish, because the cynical but lovable Ogre (Mike Myers) and his hilarious companion, Donkey (voiced by Eddie Murphy) have graced the Netflix movie list. This fairy tale parody will have you laughing and crying and begging for more... which is why we're so glad that Netflix also has Shrek 2, Shrek the Third and Shrek Forever After.
Best Netflix comedies
Looking for some funny recommendations? These are our top-rated Netflix comedy movies below.
30. What To Expect When You're Expecting
This film is hilarious. Whether you are expecting, new parents or nowhere near ready, this film follows the lives of five couples who are soon to be new parents. You'll see their lives completely change (for the better, of course) – the good, the bad and best of all: the truths. With an all-star cast featuring Cameron Diaz, Jennifer Lopez, Elizabeth Banks, Chris Rock, Dennis Quaid, Anna Kendrick and Chace Crawford, it's bound to get you laughing. Shoutout to The Dudes group. 'Stuff just happens, okay, last week I caught my kid eating a cigarette', 'I caught him playing in the dryer', 'I picked up the wrong kid from daycare', 'No judging!'.
An oldie but a goodie, Superbad is a high school comedy featuring Jonah Hill, Michael Cera and Christopher Mintz-Plasse who plays the iconic character of McLovin. These friends are due to finish high school soon and are on the quest to lose their virginities before they do. After a run-in with the police – Bill Hader and Seth Rogen – one fake ID, a robber, some Class A drugs, a fake arrest and a lot of sick, do they manage to complete their mission? If this hasn't convinced you, it's from the writers of The 40-Year-Old Virgin.
32. Step Brothers
If you haven't seen it, you're missing out big time. Two middle aged men called Brennan and Dale – Will Ferrell and John Christopher Reilly – are forced to live together when their parents marry. The pair hate each other, despite being very similar – both are unemployed and living at home. After trying every single tactic to break their parents up because they hate being step brothers, they soon realise they share interests and finally become proper brothers. But is it too late? Have they pushed their parents to the edge? After one broken bunk bed, hundreds of job interviews, a (not untouched) drumset and a music video, will they remain step brothers? Richard Jenkins, Mary Steenburgen, Adam Scott and Kathryn Hahn also star. So much room for activities.
33. Horrible Bosses
The first Horrible Bosses will always be our favourite, but the sequel is a good'un, too. As three friends – Jazon Sudeikis, Charlie Day and Colin Farrell – come to the conclusion that they all hate their retrospective bosses – Jason Bateman, Jennifer Anniston and Kevin Spacey – they plot to murder them. A dental assistant, executive at a financial firm and an account manager at a chemical company obviously have no idea what they're doing so hire a hitman, Jamie Foxx, to help do the jobs. Will they go through with it and get away with it?
34. 21 Jump Street
Channing Tatum in uniform? We're in. Two high school friends – Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill – become police offers and their job sees them go undercover, as students, to find the source of a popular synthetic drug. However this time their roles are reversed with Channing Tatum as the nerd, and Jonah Hill the popular one. Will the pair blow their cover and ruin the mission? Or will all truth be revealed? Either way, it has a great cast including Dave Franco, Brie Larson, Rob Riggle, Ice Cube and Chris Parnell, so it's more than worth a watch.
35. Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga
Starring Will Ferrel, Rachel McAdams and Pierce Brosnan among many other famous faces, this new Netflix movie is all about Eurovision and focuses on two applicants from Iceland. It's hilarious, will definitely get you singing along and honestly, it's not as bad as it sounds. Well worth a watch.