The Best Movies on Netflix in India
Having made a splash with TV shows, Netflix is starting to invest big in original films. It has spent nine-figure sums (in dollars) internationally for Martin Scorsese and Michael Bay’s next ventures, and it recently announced a new round of investments in India, being produced by the likes of Shah Rukh Khan and Karan Johar. But the strength of its catalogue, which includes some of the best movies ever made, lies in its acquisitions from across the world. The best Netflix movies are then a combination of the two, including the likes of The Avengers, Captain America: Civil War, Rang De Basanti, and Andaz Apna Apna. With nearly 3,000 titles spanning genres and languages, the list of best Netflix movies has something for everyone, naturally.
To pick the best Netflix movies, we relied on Rotten Tomatoes and IMDb ratings to create a shortlist — the latter was preferred for Indian films given RT’s shortfalls in that department — in addition to our own editorial judgement in a few places. This list will be updated once every few months if there are any worthy additions or if some movies are removed from the service, so bookmark this page and keep checking in. Here are the best 130 films currently available on Netflix in India, sorted alphabetically.
- 12 Years A Slave (2013)
Duped into slavery on the account of a job, Steve McQueen’s adaptation of a free New York black man’s (Chiwetel Ejiofor) 19th-century memoir is an incredible true story, and an important watch.
- 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)
In Stanley Kubrick’s highly-influential sci-fi film, humanity charts a course for Jupiter with the sentient computer HAL 9000, to understand the discovery of a black monolith affecting human evolution. It’s less plot, and more a visual and aural experience.
- Aamir (2008)
Adapted from the 2006 Filipino film Cavite, a young Muslim NRI doctor (Rajeev Khandelwal) returning from the UK to India is forced to comply with terrorists’ demands to carry out a bombing in Mumbai after they threaten his family.
- Aladdin (1992)
Disney puts its animation flavour onto the famous folk tale of a street urchin who disguises himself as a wealthy prince after finding a genie in a magic lamp, in an attempt to impress the Sultan’s daughter.
- Anbe Sivam (2003)
Kamal Haasan and R. Madhavan star in this Tamil cult film, in which the two are stranded over a thousand kilometres from home after heavy rain cancels all flights and strike up an unlikely friendship on their way back. Haasan also wrote the script.
- Andaz Apna Apna (1994)
Two slackers (Aamir Khan and Salman Khan) who belong to middle-class families vie for the affections of an heiress, and inadvertently become her protectors from a local gangster in Rajkumar Santoshi’s cult comedy favourite.
- Andhadhun (2018)
Inspired by the French short film *L’Accordeur*, this black comedy thriller is the story of a piano player (Ayushman Khurrana) who pretends to be visually-impaired and is caught in a web of twists and lies after he walks into a murder scene. Tabu, Radhika Apte star alongside.
- Ankhon Dekhi (2014)
After an eye-opening experience involving his daughter’s marriage, a man in his late 50s (Sanjay Mishra) resolves that he won’t believe anything he can’t see, which naturally leads to some dramatic complications.
- Argo (2012)
Ben Affleck directs and stars in this film about a CIA agent posing as a Hollywood producer scouting for location in Iran, in order to rescue six Americans during the US hostage crisis of 1979.
- The Avengers (2012)
Earth’s mightiest heroes — including Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, and the Hulk — come together in this groundbreaking Marvel team-up from writer-director Joss Whedon to stop Thor’s adopted brother Loki (Tom Hiddleston) and his alien army from subjugating mankind.
- The Aviator (2004)
With Leonardo DiCaprio as Howard Hughes and Cate Blanchett as Katharine Hepburn, Martin Scorsese dives into the life of the aviation pioneer and film producer, who grapples with severe OCD while his fame grows.
- Back to the Future (1985)
Not many films come close to the worldwide appeal and legacy left by this sci-fi entry featuring the iconic DeLorean that Michael J. Fox’s character uses to (accidentally) time travel to when his parents were his age. Strange then that it didn’t get the green light for years.
- Barfi! (2012)
Set in the 1970s amidst the hills of Darjeeling, writer-director Anurag Basu tells the tale of three people (Ranbir Kapoor, Priyanka Chopra, and Ileana D’Cruz) as they learn to love while battling the notions held by society.
- Beasts of No Nation (2015)
With civil war raging across a fictional African nation, this Netflix Original focuses on a young boy who’s trained as a child soldier by a fierce warlord (Idris Elba), and the effects it has on him.
- Beauty and the Beast (1991)
Disney turned the French fairy tale about a young woman imprisoned by a beast, who is actually a prince altered by a magical spell, into a celebrated animated musical adaptation whose soundtrack has stood the test of time.
- Birdman (2014)
Alejandro G. Iñárritu won three Oscars including Best Picture for this tale of a washed-up superhero actor (Michael Keaton) who struggles to revive his career with a Broadway play. Known for appearing as if it was shot in a single take, it also starred Edward Norton, Zach Galifianakis, and Emma Stone.
- The Bourne trilogy (2002-07)
Technically not a trilogy, but the first three chapters — Identity, Supremacy, and Ultimatum — starring Matt Damon in the lead as the titular CIA assassin suffering from amnesia were so good that they changed the longest-running spy franchise of all-time: James Bond.
- The Breadwinner (2017)
This animated film follows a 11-year-old girl living under Taliban rule in Afghanistan, who disguises herself as a boy to provide for her family after the father is taken away without reason. Uses wonderfully-drawn vignettes to stress on the importance of storytelling.
- Captain America: Civil War (2016)
After the UN pushes for government oversight of the Avengers owing to the repeated collateral damage, the superhero faction is split down the middle, with Iron Man and Captain America on two opposing sides.
- Captain Phillips (2013)
The true story of a Somali pirate hijacking of a US cargo ship and its captain (Tom Hanks) being taken hostage, which spawns a rescue effort from the US Navy. The Bourne Ultimatum’s Paul Greengrass directs.
- Children of Men (2006)
In a world where infertility has brought mankind to the verge of extinction, a cynical civil servant (Clive Owen) decides to help a miraculously-pregnant woman refugee get to safety, as a war rages on between the British police state and a militant group of immigrants. Alfonso Cuarón directs.
- A Clockwork Orange (1971)
Set in a near-future dystopian Britain, writer-director Stanley Kubrick adapts Anthony Burgess’ novel of the same name, commenting on juvenile delinquency through the eyes of a small gang leader who enjoys “a bit of the old ultra-violence”.
- Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977)
Steven Spielberg’s slow-paced sci-fi pic — which spent several years in development, being rewritten over and over — is about an everyday blue-collar guy (Richard Dreyfuss) whose humdrum life turns upside down after an encounter with an unidentified flying object (UFO).
- Company (2002)
Inspired the real-life relationship between Dawood Ibrahim and Chhota Rajan, director Ram Gopal Varma offers a look at how a henchman (Vivek Oberoi) climbs up the mobster ladder and befriends the boss (Ajay Devgn), before they fall out.
- Court (2014)
Winner of the top prize at the National Film Awards, this legal drama made with non-professional actors delivers a scathing critique of the judicial nightmare in India through the lens of an ageing singer accused of abetting a manhole worker’s suicide through his songs.
- Dallas Buyers Club (2013)
Refusing to accept a death sentence from his doctor after being diagnosed with AIDS in the 1980s, the true story of an electrician and hustler (Matthew McConaughey) who smuggles banned medications from abroad.
- Dangal (2016)
The extraordinary true story of amateur wrestler Mahavir Singh Phogat (Aamir Khan) who trains his two daughters to become India’s first world-class female wrestlers, who went on to win gold medals at the Commonwealth Games.
- Dev.D (2009)
Anurag Kashyap offers a modern-day reimagining of Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay’s Bengali romance classic Devdas, in which a man (Abhay Deol), having broken up with his childhood sweetheart, finds refuge in alcohol and drugs, before falling for a prostitute (Kalki Koechlin).
- District 9 (2009)
Inspired by the Apartheid, Neill Blomkamp’s feature debut explores the life of extra-terrestrial beings forced to live in slum-like conditions outside Johannesburg, through the eyes of a government agent responsible for their relocation.
- Django Unchained (2012)
Written and directed by Quentin Tarantino, a German bounty hunter (Christoph Waltz) helps a freed slave (Jamie Foxx) rescue his wife from a charming but cruel plantation owner (Leonardo DiCaprio).
- Doctor Strange (2016)
Severely injuring his hands in a career-ending car accident, a brilliant neurosurgeon (Benedict Cumberbatch) travels across the world to meet a mysterious individual, and learns about a world of mystic arts in this standalone chapter that connects into the larger Marvel universe.
- Drive (2011)
A stuntman moonlighting as a getaway driver (Ryan Gosling) grows fond of his neighbour and her young son, and then takes part in a botched heist to protect them from the debt-ridden husband.
- End of Watch (2012)
Before he made a terrible sci-fi remake of his own film, writer-director David Ayer took a near-documentarian lens to the day-to-day police work of two partners (Jake Gyllenhaal and Michael Peña) in South Los Angeles, involving their friendship and dealings with criminal elements.
- The Florida Project (2017)
Set in the shadow of Disney World, a precocious six-year-old girl (Brooklynn Prince) makes the most of her summer with her ragtag playmates, while her rebellious mother tries to make ends meet with the spectre of homelessness always hanging over them. Willem Dafoe stars alongside.
- Ferris Bueller’s Day Off (1986)
In John Hughes’ now-classic teen picture, a high schooler fakes being sick to spend the day with his girlfriend and his best friend, while his principal is determined to spy on him.
- Finding Nemo (2003)
After his son gets abducted in the Great Barrier Reef, a meek overprotective clownfish sets out to rescue him from Sydney, learning to take risks along the way with the help of a regal blue tang named Dory.
- Fruitvale Station (2013)
Black Panther writer-director Ryan Coogler’s first feature offered a look at the real-life events of a young California man’s (Michael B. Jordan) death in a police shooting in 2008. Winner of two awards at Sundance Film Festival.
- Full Metal Jacket (1987)
Stanley Kubrick follows a US marine nicknamed Joker from his days as a new recruit under the command of a ruthless sergeant, to his posting as a war correspondent in South Vietnam, while observing the effects of the war on his fellow soldiers.
- Get Out (2017)
Oscar-winner Jordan Peel’s fantastic directorial debut, a satirical horror that tackles racism, slavery and liberal ignorance, never made it to Indian theatres, so this is your chance to catch the film that made waves two years ago — and earned a spot on our best-of.
- Gladiator (2000)
Winner of five Oscars, including Best Picture and Best Actor for Russell Crowe, this Ridley Scott-directed film tells a moving story of a Roman general (Crowe) who loses everything — his family and rank —to end up as a slave and then seeks vengeance on the perpetrator (Joaquin Phoenix).
- Gone Girl (2014)
Based on Gillian Flynn’s best-selling novel and directed by David Fincher, a confounded husband (Ben Affleck) becomes the primary suspect in the sudden mystery disappearance of his wife (Rosamund Pike).
- Gravity (2013)
Two US astronauts, a first-timer (Sandra Bullock) and another on his final mission (George Clooney), are stranded in space after their shuttle is destroyed, and then must battle debris and challenging conditions to return home.
- Guardians of the Galaxy (2014)
A bunch of intergalactic misfits, which includes a talking racoon and tree, come together to form a ragtag team in this Marvel adventure that needs no prior knowledge.
- Guru (2007)
Mani Ratnam wrote and directed this rags-to-riches story of a ruthless and ambitious businessman (Abhishek Bachchan) who doesn’t let anything stand in his way as he turns into India’s biggest tycoon. Loosely inspired by the life of Dhirubhai Ambani.
- Haider (2014)
Vishal Bhardwaj’s Shakespearean trilogy concluded with this modern-day adaptation of Hamlet, that is also based on Basharat Peer’s 1990s-Kashmir memoir Curfewed Night. Follows a young man (Shahid Kapoor) who returns home to investigate his father’s disappearance and finds himself embroiled in the ongoing violent insurgency…….Read more>>