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Good movies on Netflix that you really need to watch

Netflix best movies
Fruitvale Station and A Clockwork Orange. Pic credit: The Weinstein Company/Warner Bros.

If you’re looking for some really good movies to watch on Netflix but aren’t sure which ones to go for, then don’t worry because we have a simple list of some of the best movies you really need to watch, right here.

Netflix has thousands of movies on its streaming platform, and sometimes it can be a little overwhelming and downright confusing to locate a perfect film.

Many of us suffer from spending hours just trying to decide what film to dedicate our precious time to watch. How many of you have ended up going to bed without having selected anything? We feel your frustration.

Well, hopefully, this list of outstanding movies will set you on the right track. In no particular order, here are 15 very entertaining watches.

Updated on November 1: Every month, Netflix adds new movies and drops many others from the streaming service. As a result, many movies we add to the list might end up axed from the site, but the good news is that other great movies come along to take their place.

Every month, we will update this article by removing movies that are no longer available to watch while we add great movies to replace them.

However, once you get past this list, here are more great new movies added this month you can watch — Superman Returns, WarGames, Cape Fear, Basic Instinct, Frago, Her, Gran Torino, Stranger Than Fiction, and ParaNorman.

A Clockwork Orange (1971)

A Clockwork Orange
Malcolm McDowell in A Clockwork Orange. Pic credit: Warner Bros

In 1971, Stanley Kubrick directed an adaptation of the Anthony Burgess novel about a dystopian society that has nosedived into debauchery and depravity.

Malcolm McDowell stars as Alex, the leader of his own street gang who abuses, assaults, and brutalizes people on a regular basis. However, when Alex is brought in and arrested, he ends up undergoing experimental psychological conditioning to “cure” him of his criminal impulses.

The problem is that when he is released, Alex is incapable of protecting himself from his former gang, and those people he hurt in the past come gunning for him.

The film is a morality tale, asking if it is okay to use aversion therapy to stop immoral behavior.

Fruitvale Station (2013)

Fruitvale Station
Michael B. Jordan and Kevin Durand in Fruitvale Station. Pic credit: The Weinstein Company

With the recent spotlight on police violence in the United States, the 2013 film Fruitvale Station proves this is nothing new in the country.

The movie is based on the true-life story of Oscar Grant, who was murdered by a police officer who shot him in the back and claimed he thought he was using his taser.

The movie was a critical success and allowed debut director Ryan Coogler and star Michael B. Jordan to move on to make some major Hollywood blockbusters in Creed and Black Panther.

The movie won the Grand Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival and the Best First Film award at Cannes.

Being John Malkovich (1999)

Being John Malkovich
John Malkovich in Being John Malkovich. Pic credit: USA Films

Spike Jonze directed Being John Malkovich in 1999, one of the most quirky movies of all-time.

The film starred John Cusack as a Craig, an unemployed puppeteer, who discovered a secret floor in a high rise building, and when he explores the floor, he found a mysterious door.

When passing through this door, the person finds themselves in the head of John Malkovich and can control what the real-life actor does for a short time.

The strange idea came from the mind of screenwriter Charlie Kaufman, and when Malkovich learns what is happening and finds the door, things get even more bizarre.

Back to the Future (1985)

Back to the Future
Michael J. Fox and Christopher Lloyd in Back to the Future. Pic credit: Universal

Released in 1985, Robert Zemeckis brought the world Back to the Future. Michael J Fox stars as Martin McFly, a teenager who travels back in time to meet his parents and then has to make sure he doesn’t destroy the space-time continuum.

If he accidentally changes the past too much, he will delete himself from the future.

The iconic Christopher Lloyd stars as Doc Brown and the movie helped make the DeLorean a classic iconic car in cinema history.

Produced by Steven Spielberg, Back to the Future stands the test of time as one of the best movies available on Netflix.

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004)

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
Jim Carrey and Kate Winslet in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. Pic credit: Focus Features

In 2004, Michel Gondry created his masterpiece in the film, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.

This movie is a drama film and might be the best movie that Jim Carrey ever appeared in.

In the movie, Carrey is a shy, but good man, who meets a free-spirited girl played by Kate Winslet, and the two fall in love. However, after a fight, Winslet’s character chooses to use a fictional mindwiping sci-fi technique to remove him from her memory.

When that happened, a broken-hearted Carrey sets out to have her removed from his memory to remove the pain, and the movie shows those memories as they dissipate.

Dolemite Is My Name (2019)

Eddie Murphy in Dolemite Is My Name
Eddie Murphy stars in Dolemite Is My Name. Pic credit: Netflix

We start with a delightful comedy featuring a glorious return to the big screen from Eddie Murphy. As the lead, Eddie portrays real-life legend Rudy Ray Moore, who, in the ’70s, created the comic character Dolemite the Pimp.

The ridiculously flamboyant and foul-mouthed character was a beloved antihero who went on to become a regular feature in the Blaxploitation era. Murphy embodies this wonderful character perfectly, and he picked up a couple of Golden Globe nominations for his troubles too.

As well as Murphy, it also stars some rather big names, including Keegan-Michael Key, Mike Epps, and Craig Robinson. Wesley Snipes also makes a fascinating return to the big screen.

Mean Streets (1973)

Scene from Mean Streets
Harvey Keitel and Robert De Niro starred in Mean Streets. Pic credit: Warner Bros.

Next, we go way back to the ’70s for Martin Scorcese’s breakout movie Mean Streets. The film also brought Scorcese’s protege, Robert De Niro, into the public consciousness.

Harvey Keitel and De Niro bubbled with nervous, aggressive energy as two New York buddies trying to make it on the mean streets.

As Roger Ebert suggested, it’s less a gangster movie and more a tragic story of two young men trying to come to terms with a gangster environment. Either way, it set both Scorcese and De Niro up for glittering careers.

The Irishman (2019)

A shot from The Irishman
Al Pacino and Robert DeNiro were just two of many big names to star in The Irishman. Pic credit: Netflix

And we’re back with Martin Scorcese for his 2019 gangster epic made especially for release on Netflix, The Irishman. This movie runs for a whopping 209 minutes, but it’s worth every second.

Loosely, very loosely, based on the true-life story of the antics of Frank Sheeran, aka The Irishman, a mafia errand boy who managed to get himself involved in the infamous murder/disappearance of Teamster union boss Frank Hoffa.

The movie used groundbreaking age altering technology to be able to track the lives of the main characters for decades, without having to change actors.

It’s wonderful to see Joe Pesci and Robert De Niro back working together, and throw in Al Pacino as Frank Hoffa… What are you waiting for?

The Other Guys (2010)

A shot from The Other Guys
Mark Wahlberg and Will Ferrell star as The Other Guys. Pic credit: Sony

Next up is a delightful goofball comedy starring Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg as Allen and Terry, two desk-bound New York cops who are longing to crack the big case.

Allen and Terry finally get their turn in the limelight after the deaths of the department’s two most popular cops.

In one of Ferrell’s better films, he teams up once again with director Adam McKay (who directed Anchorman: The Legend of Tom Burgundy and Talladega Nights) to produce a cracking and hilarious buddy cop movie.

Also, make sure you check out the brilliantly comic performance of Eva Mendes as Ferrell’s sexy wife, Dr. Sheila Ramos Gamble.

The Social Network (2010)

A shot from The Social Network
Jesse Eisenberg plays Mark Zuckerberg in The Social Network. Pic credit: Sony

The Social Network is back on Netflix, and despite being ten years old, it’s proving that it still holds up well. This is mainly down to Aaron Sorkin’s sparklingly good screenplay coupled with the stylish directorship of David Fincher.

Starring Jesse Eisenberg as young entrepreneur Mark Zuckerberg, along with Andrew Garfield and Justin Timberlake, it tells the story of the origins of social media platform Facebook.

The movie picked up a whopping eight Oscar nominations and managed to bag three of them, including Best Adapted Screenplay. The script is witty and razor-sharp even if it does now feel a little strange and dated ten years later.

Roma (2018)

Scene from Roma
The movie Roma follows the fortunes and misfortunes of cleaner Cleo in Mexico City. Pic credit: Netflix

Alfonso Cuarón’s beautiful film is set in 1970s Mexico City and revolves around Cleo (played by Yalitza Aparicio), who is a cleaner for a middle-class family. She is no ordinary cleaner as she’s considered almost like a member of the family.

Her employers agree to take her in when she accidentally falls pregnant. The movie follows a year in the life of Cleo as she comes to terms with motherhood and deals with the other major upheavals in her environment.

It is a semi-autobiographical look at Cuarón’s childhood growing up in Mexico City. Roger Ebert described this movie as a “masterful achievement in filmmaking as an empathy machine, a way for us to spend time in a place, in an era, and with characters, we never would otherwise.”

The Oscars agreed with Ebert and gave it three awards.

Uncut Gems (2019)

A shot from Uncut Gems
Adam Sandler plays a New York jeweler in this gritty crime thriller. Pic credit: Netflix

Adam Sandler, as we all know, cut his teeth doing comedy, so it’s rather strange and even a little unsettling to see him starring in this very tense thriller. However, he puts in a fantastic performance.

Written and directed by Josh and Benny Safdie, the script tells the story of Howard Ratner (Sandler), a New York jeweler with a severe gambling problem. As he gets further into trouble, he resorts to doing whatever it takes to stay afloat.

This taut, anxiety-driven film, is one of the best movies of 2019.

Interesting fact, Sandler was nearly choked to death on the set by a couple of extras in a stunt that almost went very wrong indeed.

The Two Popes (2019)

A scene from The Two Popes
Anthony Hopkins and Jonathan Pryce star as The Two Popes. Pic credit: Netflix

A bit of modern-day history next up with 2019s The Two Popes. Based on the book by Anthony McCarten, who also wrote the screenplay, and directed by Fernando Meirelles, the film is based on the true-life machinations of Pope Benedict XVI and Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio as the former prepared to abdicate.

Benedict XVI, who is played by Anthony Hopkins, attempts to dissuade Bergoglio, who will later become Pope Francis from resigning his position as Archbishop. The new pope is played by Jonathan Pryce, who put in a magnificent performance.

Both Price and Hopkins picked up a ton of awards for their performances.

Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy (2011)

A scene from Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy
Gary Oldman stars in Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy. Pic credit: StudioCanal

We’ve not had a really good spy movie on the list yet, so let’s change that with an adaptation of John Le Carre’s novel Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy.

Set within Britain’s intelligence service in the 1970s, it features Gary Oldman, as spy genius George Smiley, who’s trying to weed out the Soviet mole who’s planted themselves firmly at the center of the agency.

The movie has a stunning cast of some of Britain’s finest actors, which include Tom Hardy, Colin Firth, John Hurt, and Benedict Cumberbatch.

End of Watch (2102)

A scene from End of Watch
Jake Gyllenhaal and Michael Pena star as cops in End of Watch. Pic credit: StudioCanal

We finish up our list with good old fashioned cops and robbers (well drug dealers). Except that’s not entirely true because this not your typical buddy cop movie.

It stars Jake Gyllenhaal and Michael Peña as Officers Taylor and Zavala, two close pals and “ghetto cops,” walking their beat in a tough Los Angeles neighborhood.

While these cops aren’t afraid to bend a rule or two to get results, they are very serious about their obligation to serve and protect as they battle it out with Mexican cartels.

Written and directed by David Ayer, this is a real gritty movie that has plenty of action scenes and packs lots of punch.

That’s it, folks, enjoy your Netflix viewing.

Jerry Brown

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