Best movies on Netflix: 16 films you have to stop what you're doing and watch right now

If you're new to Netflix and want to find the best movies to watch, or you're tired of browsing Netflix's catalog day after day and coming up empty, you've come to the right place. With thousands of movies at your disposal, it's easy to get stuck in binge-watching mode, but finding the honest-to-goodness best films can be a bit of hassle.

In an effort to determine the best of the best, we've put together a list of the greatest possible films you can watch – curated by TechRadar editors and backed up with ratings from IMDB and Rotten Tomatoes – so that you don't have to sift through the muck. We'll keep this best-of list up to date with the latest movies that are must-watch, so you waste zero screen time searching.

Are TV shows more your scene? Here are the best TV shows on Netflix!

1. The Hateful Eight

 

There are few directors who have filmographies as celebrated as Quentin Tarantino, and The Hateful Eight only goes to further add to his illustrious career. Based several years after the Civil War in a cabin in Wyoming in the dead of winter, this high-intensity thriller puts a wide variety of suspicious individuals together in the same room, and it’s uncertain whether or not anyone will make it out alive. This film heavily features Tarantino’s masterful use of dialogue and cinematography to really make you feel like you’re part of the action as you suspiciously watch everyone in the room – trying to figure out who is trustworthy.

IMDB Rating: 7.8, Rotten Tomatoes: 74%

2. Blackfish

Best movies on Netflix

Blackfish, the controversial nature documentary that follows a misunderstood and often violent killer whale in captivity at SeaWorld, made a huge splash when it was released in 2013. Its story has moved audiences to take action in a way that few other films have ever done, going so far as forcing lawmakers' hands to introduce legislation that will demand that SeaWorld release killer whales back into the wild. It's an emotional ride through the highs and lows of the aquatic entertainment industry, one that reveals the real consequences of keeping animals where they don't belong.

IMDB Rating: 8.1, Rotten Tomatoes: 98%

3. Inglorious Basterds

Best movies on Netflix

Prolific Tarantino films come and go on Netflix all the time (see: Django Unchained, Kill Bill Vol. 1 & 2, Inglorious Basterds and Reservoir Dogs), but Inglorious Basterds, the current Tarantino film, is definitely high up on our list. Like Django, Kill Bill and well, I guess every other Tarantino film, this one comes with a caveat – if you're looking for a family movie, look somewhere else. 

IMDB Rating: 8.3, Rotten Tomatoes: 89%

4. The Imitation Game

Best Movies on Netflix

There are plenty of great war films on Netflix (including Full Metal Jacket, coming up later on this list. But if you're looking for a different side of the battle, the one fought with minds and willpower rather than guns and grenades, watch The Imitation Game. Cumberbatch's Alan Turing and Keira Knightley's Joan Clarke are an interesting on-screen duo, and the race to beat the Nazi war machine adds palpable tension without ever showing a drop of blood.

IMDB Rating: 8.1, Rotten Tomatoes: 90%