18 Netflix Films to Watch Right Now: Best Netflix Original Movies

best-netflix-original-movies

Netflix used just to have original TV shows, but it survived on DVD mailers of our favorite movies. Since its original debut production, Netflix has produced crowd-pleasers and Oscar winners – often both at once.

Here are the finest Netflix original movies ever, in release order.

Read more: What’s New on Netflix in May 2022

I Lost My Body (2019)

best-netflix-original-movies

Happy Hand, I Lost My Body is a rough adaption of Guillaume Laurant’s (Amelie) 2006 book. On the surface, this French film is about a severed hand yearning to rejoin its body, but it’s a realization of humanity and completeness. Netflix bought the film after it opened at Cannes to great acclaim, and it’s another proof of its creative ambition.

Gerald’s Game (2017)

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Mike Flanagan’s Stephen King adaptation of Gerald’s Game wrings tremendous horrors from a tiny locale, like his Netflix horror movie Hush. The film follows Jessie Burlingame (Carla Gugino), shackled to a bed at an isolated holiday house after her husband, Gerald, dies of a heart attack while playing his kinky sexual fantasies. She’s stuck. Flanagan and Gugino transform the potentially one-note set-up into a powerful, profound meditation on trauma, memory, and resilience in the face of near-certain disaster.

The Ritual (2017)

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How often can four naive chumps go into unexplored, gloomy forests before they learn not to do so? No response, please. David Bruckner rewires the “cabin in the woods” idea to tell the tale of four friends mourning the death of their fifth and the Swedish hiking expedition that throws them into Hell. The Ritual challenges religion and destiny with a twisted grasp of what makes horror violence exciting.

Check out: Best Netflix Psychological Thrillers

His House (2020)

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Bol and Rial Major, refugees from war-torn South Sudan, are granted a dilapidated townhouse and a monthly stipend in a London neighborhood. Bol tries to integrate by traveling to town, hanging out in bars, using silverware, and purchasing new clothing, while Rial clings to their Dinka culture and the grief of their lost kid. They see specters and think a witch is haunting them. His House’s strength stems from its final-act disclosure, which pushes its protagonists to confront their pain and shame. There’s a certain dread in seeing horrible brutality and then retreating into a dreamlike realm.

Beasts of No Nation (2015)

best-netflix-original-movies

Cary Fukunaga’s WWII drama isn’t backgrounding viewing. This intense character study follows Agu (Abraham Attah) as he’s recruited to be a child soldier in an African civil war (its specifics are left purposely ambiguous). The movie is noisy, tender, and brutal, ruled by a harsh commander (Idris Elba). The characters may not reach adulthood.

Our Souls at Night (2017)

best-netflix-original-movies

Though Our Souls at Night seems sentimental, it isn’t. Jane Fonda and Robert Redford portray widowed neighbors who form an unexpected bond. Ritesh Batra’s movie adapts Kent Haruf’s novel of the same name and spends no time putting the two into the unpleasantness of getting to know one other (“Pretty chilly for spring, huh?”), the peculiar optics of being together in public, and the near-impossible challenge of filling a hole that affects others. From strangers to lovers, their story is impressive, albeit somewhat sappy. It’s not about sex, argues Fonda’s Addie, but about “getting through the night.” The outcome is a quiet yet joyful film that honors its performers.

Win It All (2017)

best-netflix-original-movies

Joe Swanberg and Jake Johnson portray a schlub in distress in less than 90 minutes. Like Drinking Buddies (2013) and Easy (2018), Swanberg focuses on the minutiae of thirtysomething existential dread and hits big. In narrating the narrative of a gambling addict called Eddie (Johnson), who is entrusted with a bag of money, the director mixes old-fashioned Hollywood storytelling with low-key realism. Will Eddie buck up? Win It All would rather spend time with these lovable losers than answer the question.

Have a look at: 18 Horror Films to Watch Right Now: Best Netflix Scary Movies

Barry (2016)

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Barack Obama arrived in NYC in 1981 to attend Columbia University. As Barry imagines, only days after starting civics class, a white student asks, “Why does everything have to be about slavery?” Exalting a sitting President is cinematic peril. Barry avoids hagiography by staying on time, assessing contemporary racial concerns, and being silent. Terrell is a steadying figure, an easygoing, socially involved, and reflective person stranded in a racial division. Barry is an ’80s half-black, half-white youngster. His past, present, and future torment him.

Tallulah (2016) 

best-netflix-original-movies

Tallulah follows Ellen Page’s character after she “kidnaps” a baby from an alcoholic affluent lady and passes the child off as her own to appeal to her boyfriend’s mother (Allison Janney). Heder’s directorial debut balances family difficulties and wayward tendencies with genuine societal drama and hilarious shenanigans. Tallulah’s on-the-run parenting course makes her a criminal in the eyes of. Everyone. You want to support her, but it’s too simple.

Passing (2021)

best-netflix-original-movies

Passing, Rebecca Hall’s directorial debut, adapts Nella Larsen’s 1929 book about childhood pals who rejoin as adults and find their lives in conflict. Irene (Tessa Thompson) lives in Harlem with her husband and two children; Clare (Ruth Negga) passes as white and is married to a bigot. An unexpected reconnection after years apart awakens mutual concerns, mainly when Clare infiltrates Irene’s life. Hall keeps the tension between her characters simmering with a black-and-white film and a jazz soundtrack by Dev Hynes. Thompson and Negga are superb, expressing their characters’ underlying feelings with tiny looks and voice changes. Hall’s picture has flair, but it’s all about the complex sentiments behind the gorgeous people and events.

Also read: Mind-blowing and The Best Netflix Sci-fi Movies

Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga (2020)

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Even if you’re not a Eurovision fan, Will Ferrell’s dedication to the singing competition will likely delight you. Ferrell and McAdams play the Icelandic duet Fire Saga. These funny musicians win Eurovision (with the assistance of elves) and embark on a crazy and wonderful trip. It’s a delight to see, and the music is lovely. “Jaja Ding Dong”

Tick, tick… BOOM! (2021)

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Before Rent, Jonathan Larson was a struggling playwright. After Larson’s unexpected death in 1996, the musical was rewritten and presented off-Broadway. Lin-Manuel Miranda, who played Jon in 2014, directs tick, tick… BOOM! The film’s highlight is Andrew Garfield’s gritty, optimistic, tired performance. It’s a stunning film about creativity that pays honor to Stephen Sondheim, Larson’s mentor, who died days after the film’s Netflix debut.

Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom (2020)

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Watching Chadwick Boseman in Netflix’s Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom is painful. Boseman, who died in 2020 of colon cancer, portrays Levee, an ambitious, turbulent trumpeter. He’s attractive, seductive, angry, and shattered in character. There are several applause-worthy moments. Ma Rainey, which also stars Viola Davis as the blues singer the story revolves around, is a gratifying rendition of one of the 20th century’s finest plays, a reminder that Wilson’s work should be as vital to American education as Shakespeare or Arthur Miller.

I Don’t Feel at Home in This World Anymore (2017)

best-netflix-original-movies

Ruth (Melanie Lynskey) and her rattail-wearing, weapon-obsessed neighbor Tony (Elijah Wood) seek a neighborhood burglar. I Don’t Feel at Home in This World Anymore is half Cormac McCarthy drama, part Will Ferrell-esque humor. No, director Macon Blair isn’t the first to get existential insight from swearing older people, ninja stars, Google montages, liters of Big Red drink, friendly raccoons, exploding body parts, and human stupidity.

No, director Macon Blair isn’t the first to get existential insight from swearing older adults, ninja stars, Google montages, liters of Big Red drink, friendly raccoons, exploding body parts, and human stupidity.

Houda Benyamina’s Divines is a dynamic and exquisite criminal thriller about female friendship. Dounia (Oulaya Amara) and Maimouna (Déborah Lukumuena) are shoplifters and robbers until they meet Rebecca (Jisca Kalvanda), a heroin dealer. Benyamina contrasts violent, nasty genre aspects with poetic parts when Dounia watches her ballet-dancer crush practice and energetic sequences of the young ladies fooling around on social media. It’s told with enthusiasm, sensitivity, and elegance.

My Happy Family (2017)

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Manana (Ia Shughliashvili) leaves her husband, son, daughter, daughter’s live-in boyfriend, and elderly parents, aged 52. The cantankerous family asks Manana, a literature teacher, for everything. Manana’s departure is a deeper strain of irritation, despite what her brother, aunts, uncles, and anybody else who can jam themselves into the scenario would want us to believe. My Happy Family is both sensitive and ruthless in its representation of independence and should get under the skin of anybody with family problems.

The Mitchells vs. The  Machines (2021)

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The Mitchells vs. the Machines on Netflix reinforced Sony Pictures Animation’s reputation as an exciting animation company. The family comedy about a gang of weird besieged by an AI apocalypse is highly humorous and poignant, showcasing a profound father-daughter bond. A thrilling and emotional conclusion, The Mitchells vs. the Machines is directed and written by Mike Rianda and Jeff Rowe, both of whom worked on the Disney Channel and XD series Gravity Falls in the early 2010s.

The Ballad of Buster Scruggs (2018)

best-netflix-original-movies
THE BALLAD OF BUSTER SCRUGGS

Buster Scruggs is a six-part Western anthology by the Coen brothers that stands out among Netflix’s originals. It’s a profound meditation on mortality that reveals new layers long after you finish.

Bo Burnham: Inside (2021)

best-netflix-original-movies

Bo Burnham struck us hard a year into the COVID-19 epidemic. So good. The stand-up comedian wrote, performed, shot, and edited a special from his Los Angeles home, using the song to document quarantine, the horrors of unlimited internet, FaceTime escapades, and Jeff Bezos’ villainy. It’s a thrill to see Burnham alone, struggling with current challenges in his environment. The psychedelic attractiveness of Burnham’s light and sound design breaks through the bleakness of a society ruled by our perpetual hunts for attention. “Welcome to the Internet” is a humorous (and devastating) commentary on an always-connected civilization. “What’s your preference? Do you want to fight for civil rights or disparage people? We have a million ways to participate.”