16 best Netflix original movies that'll move you

Netflix used to only have television. But, it was once able to thrive on DVD mailers with our favorite movies. Netflix loves movies. Since its inception, it has been able to produce both crowd pleasers as well as Oscar winners.
We have compiled a list of our top Netflix original movies. These include our favourite scary movies, Bollywood movies, and many more. Here are our picks.

1. 1.

Beasts of No Nation, released 2015 Credit: netflix

Although it seemed like a risky gamble, Netflix's first original film received strong reviews and eventually won awards. Abraham Attah plays Agu, a young Ghanaian boy forced to be a soldier and join the commandant (IdrisElba). Agu fears that he is becoming a monster because of the abuse and losses suffered by the young soldiers in battle. Entertainment Reporter, Proma Khosla

You can watch Beasts of No Nation on Netflix.

2. 13.

Ava DuVernay's disturbing documentary reveals a dark loophole in the 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. This amendment abolished slavery as a punishment for crime and instead made it illegal. This clause was the basis for America's interminable and well-known problem of mass incarceration. It has a devastating effect on Black men, more so than any other group. P.K.

You can watch 13th on Netflix now.

3. Icarus

Icarus is a rare documentary that has a twist. It begins with Bryan Fogel, the filmmaker, trying out sports doping for himself in an amateur bicycle race. He discovers an international doping conspiracy that involves a strangely transparent and knowledgeable participant, Grigory Rodchenkov of the Russian antidoping laboratory. Rodchenkov began as a source of information about performance enhancers, but he had much more to offer. His whistleblowing led to a massive scandal, criminal investigations and legitimate threats to lives. Kellen Beck, Entertainment Reporter

You can watch Icarus on Netflix.

4. Okja

Mija (Ahn Seo-Hyun), and Okja in Bong Joon-Ho’s bizarre, yet thought-provoking "Okja." Credit to netflix

Bong JoonHo's latest film, which he won an Oscar for suggesting that we eat the wealthy, was about a little girl who lives with her superpig genetically modified Okja. Ahn Seo Hyun plays Mija, a wide-eyed character who can't bear to see Okja being taken away and ostensibly slaughtered for mass consumption. Mija runs to Seoul to save her best friend and expose Mirando Corporation, which started the superpig program. Okja has a simple and straightforward story. But Bong's stamp can be seen in the bizarre performances of Tilda Swinton and Paul Dano as well as in the few Easter eggs that the director left there for good measure. P.K.

Okja is streaming now on Netflix.

5. To All the Boys I Loved Before

Netflix's revival of rom-coms began in 2017, with this film based on Jenny Han's novel. Lara Jean (Lana Condor), a hopeless romantic, is fond of writing letters to her greatest crushes. To distract from her true crush, her letters start to leak. She pretends to be dating Peter Kavinsky (Noah Centineo). To All the Boys has a fun soundtrack to pop and a visual style that will make you want to share it with your friends. It's a movie you'll be able to watch again and again. We will never tire of seeing fictional characters pretend love until it becomes reality. They are not as cute as these two. P.K.

You can watch To All the Boys That I Loved Before on Netflix.

6. 6.

Yalitza Aparicio portrays Cleo, a housekeeper, in the moving film "Roma." Credit: Alfonso Cuarn/ netflix

Alfonso Cuarn's Oscar winning drama follows Cleo (Yalitza Aparicio), who is a housekeeper for a wealthy family in Mexico City. Cuarn's cinematography, writing, and direction (each one of which received an Oscar), make the film incredibly immersive. It engulfs us in Cleo’s world in a way that few movies can even reach. We feel her comfort in everyday life, her boyfriend's loss, and the blinding panic and trauma of the film's last act. This is a beautiful piece of cinema that deserves to be remembered for many decades. P.K.

Roma streaming now on Netflix

"Homecoming" takes you behind the scenes of Beyonc’s 2018 Coachella set. It is a rare and fascinating insight into Beyonc’s production and process. Credit to netflix

Homecoming is a documentary that focuses mainly on Beyonc’s 2018 Coachella headlining gig. It was nicknamed Beychella because of her exceptional performance. The documentary, which is a repeat of Beyonc’s extraordinary talent set against the backdrop of the celebratory culture surrounding sporting events and gatherings at historically Black colleges and universities, looks simple enough.

Homecoming is also very personal in that it gives us a glimpse into Beyonc's mind as she anxiously awaited her return to the stage, while still living in a body that was foreign to her. The film is incredibly moving and truly amazing.

Homecoming is worth every second of the two-hour viewing experience. It features choreography, vocals and remixes from Beyonc’s repertoire. Costume changes are made by special guest stars. * Tricia Crimmins, Entertainment Fellow

You can watch Homecoming on Netflix.

8. 8.Dolemite is my name

This Eddie Murphy film tells the story of Rudy Ray Moore, also known as Dolemite. It is a true story that will make you smile. Dolemite is My Name is both a touching look at the life and times of an underdog, as well as an entertaining time. This biopic features supporting performances from Craig Robinson, Wesley Snipes and Da'Vine Joy Randolph. It is more upbeat than many fictional comedies. It's sensational, aspirational and electric. You'll love it. * Alison Foreman, Entertainment Reporter

You can watch Dolemite: My Name on Netflix.

9. Klaus

Sergio Pablos Klaus is one of the most charming modern Christmas films. This Santa Claus origin story, nominated for Best Animated Film at 2020 Academy Awards, follows Jesper Johansson, a disappointed heir to a postal business empire, as he moves into a new position in a remote village. Klaus captures Yuletide magic in a fresh, yet cozy way. A.F.

Where to watch Klaus: Klaus is streaming now on Netflix.

10. 10.

Joke about it being called "Divorce Story" is allowed. Credit to netflix

Noah Baumbach, writer/director, Divorce Film, is a mix of a drama about family and a sad story about love lost. It also offers a glimpse into the future. It's a great movie, with two of the best performances of the year in Adam Driver and Scarlett Johansson portraying a couple who are going through a difficult split. You will feel every emotion in the movie, with every sob, cry, and painful glance.

Although it is not an easy movie to watch, it's one that you will remember for a long time. Erin Strecker, Entertainment Editor

You can watch Marriage Story on Netflix.

11. Crip Camp A Disability Revolution

"Crip Camp" tells the story of Camp Jened, an inclusive haven for young people living with disabilities in the 1960s that inspired them to create and demand a more accessible world. Credit: netflix

Crip Camp tells the story about the generation of disability activists that learned how to organize at Camp Jened, which is now closed. Camp Jened was a summer camp for teens and children with a wide variety of disabilities. The documentary uses archive footage from the 1960s to show how the camp's progressive and accessible space impacted its campers.

Many of the same people who were shown in camp footage later became leaders in life-changing demonstrations that improved people with disabilities' social status in the United States. Crip Camps greatest strength is its ability to show how early access to inclusive spaces allows marginalized communities to dream and create a better future. * Alexis Nedd Senior Entertainment Reporter

Crip Camp streaming now on Netflix

12. Tigertail

Tigertail Credit: Chen Hsiang Liu/Netflix

Alan Yang's feature film debut directs the touching story of Pin-Jui & Yuan. They met in Taiwan as young children, but lost touch over time. Pin-Jui is now distant from his daughter in his later years. Their relationship has become strained over his reluctance over the years to share his feelings. Flashbacks reveal the tender love between PinJui, Yuan, until he marries another woman. Then Pin-Jui becomes compelled to return to his roots and find his old love. * P.K.

Tigertail streaming now on Netflix

13. 13.

Isiah Whitlock Jr. and Delroy Lindo, Clarke Peters and Jonathan Majors appear in "Da 5 Bloods", in which four of their friends travel to Vietnam to recuperate what they lost in the war. Credit: COURTESY of NETFLIX

Spike Lee did in Da 5 Bloods what Spike Lee does: He created a cinematic work that is both timely and timeless. It was marked by outstanding performances and a camera lens capable of telling a story, even if the script is ignored.

The film tells the story of four Black Vietnam veterans who return to their former war zone to search for their squad leader...and the millions of CIA gold they stole and buried before they ended their tour. The men's political differences create mistrust and make their journey more difficult. This leads to a powerful final that is not-so-strangely relevant for this moment in history. * Adam Rosenberg, Senior Entertainment Reporter

You can watch Da 5 Bloods on Netflix.

14. 14.

The Old Guard is the summer blockbuster sensation. Gina Prince-Bythewood, a director based on the comics of the same title, seduces audiences into a well-crafted world full of action and story that isn’t very original but delivers its formulaic parts with enough precision to keep them interested. Charlize Theron is the ass-kicking leader in an immortal warrior fighter fight crew. Harry Melling, Marwan Kenzari and KiKi Layne perform with great success. Van Veronica Ngo, Matthias Schoenaerts and other performers also shine. * A.F.

You can watch The Old Guard on Netflix.

15. Dick Johnson is dead

Kristen Johnson, filmmaker explores the many ways her father could die in "Dick Johnson is Dead" (Netflix). Credit: netflix

It doesn't make death any less painful when it comes to someone we love. Kirsten Johnson, a filmmaker, doesn't want to ignore this terrible reality. Dick Johnson is Dead sees her father, an aging man, repeatedly killed in a series staged deaths. These range from the routine (a trip down the stairs), to the shocking (a fallen air conditioner). She sometimes follows him to his funeral and other scenes take her all the way to heaven. She reflects on their relationship, grieves his death, and shows him as the sweet charmer that he truly is. Dick Johnson is Dead, which turns out to be hilarious, heartbreaking, and absurd, explores the impossible and finds a way, through grappling with death. -Angie Han, Deputy Entertainment Editor

Where to watch: Dick Johnson Is Dead is streaming now on Netflix.

16. Jingle Jangle: Christmas Journey

Jingle Jangle is a charming original musical about family, toys and inheritable mechanical genius. Forrest Whittaker plays Jeronicus Jangle. He is a former genius toymaker who believes he has lost everything. But his daughter Jessica (literal Disney princess Anika Noi Rose) and granddaughter Journey, newcomer Madalen mills, come back into his life in an effort to rekindle the flame that makes their family so special. In unforgettable roles, Ricky Martin, Phylicia Rashed, and Keegan Mike Key all play key roles that make Jingle Jangle a holiday classic. -A.N.

You can watch Jingle Jangle on Netflix.

17. The Fear Street Trilogy (2021).

Director Leigh Janiak manages a movie miracle with her Fear Street trilogy. Her films are consistently funny and frighteningly scary, and the sequels just keep getting better. Fear Street Part One: 1994 is the first part of your journey. Here we meet Shadyside's cursed teens. The suburban haven has been terrorized for years by mass murderers, all normal townpeople who seem to "snapped over nothing".

Part Two of Fear Street Part Three: 1978, and Part Three of Fear Street Part Three : 1666. Get to the bottom the mystery surrounding these murders and the connection to the Shadyside Witch. Based on R.L. This is a punchy slasher that has enough gore to fuel a binge-eating spree. A.F.

You can watch Fear Street on Netflix.

*This blurb was previously published on a previous list. This story was first published in 2020, and it was updated in September 2021.