Must watch Netflix instant.
September 9, 2011 11:12 PM   Subscribe

What are the must watch movies on Netflix Instant? Any era, any genre.
posted by Ad hominem to Media & Arts (37 answers total) 142 users marked this as a favorite
Do you know about
posted by rdr at 11:23 PM on September 9, 2011 [7 favorites]

Big Trouble. In. Little China.

Uh, there are a lot. I don't know how helpful this will be without specific genres. I did list the greatest movie ever created in the history of all universal film making though.
posted by OnTheLastCastle at 11:29 PM on September 9, 2011 [5 favorites]

Response by poster: Yeah I do,I also know about IMDB top 250 on netflix I am looking for things that might have been missed on the NYT critics Pics and rotten tomato fresh list. Underrated hidden gems, for example Streets of Fire, which I would never have watched if not for the mefi thread.

Maybe it should be "what are your must watch movies." I am looking to watch movies outside of the genres I would normally watch
posted by Ad hominem at 11:34 PM on September 9, 2011 [2 favorites]

Dial Northside 777 was one that I had never heard of and turned out to be good. It has Jimmy Stewart doing his Young-Jimmy-Stewart thing.
posted by bleep at 11:46 PM on September 9, 2011

Randomly, from a search:

Le Cercle Rouge
The Lady Vanishes

Also: Rupert Pupkin Speaks is a good source for this kinda stuff.

(They have Videodrome? And David Holzman's Diary? Yeah watch those).

/jealous Canadian
posted by Menomena at 11:53 PM on September 9, 2011

The term "must watch" has different meanings for everyone. With that in mind, here's what I have to say.

The Fighter, any Kubrick film, Enter The Void, just about any MST3K, Food Inc., Mary and Max, My Cousin Vinny, Tangled, Toy Story 3, Casino, Best in Show, Hunt for Red October, The Messenger, Pulp Fiction, Hudson Hawk, Clerks, The Sting, The Usual Suspects, Birdemic: Shock and Terror, Little Shop of Horrors, Hobo with a Shotgun, True Lies, Apollo 13, Let Me In, Let The Right One In, Kick-Ass, Dr. Horrible's Sing Along Blog, Chaos Theory, Man on Wire, Marwencol, A Hard Day's Night, The Hustler, Paper Man, This Film Is Not Yet Rated, Ben X, Being John Malkovich, World's Greatest Dad, The Iron Giant, Southland Tales, Anvil! The Story of Anvil, Benny and Joon, Management, Monsoon Wedding, The Graduate, One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest, Empire Records!, Darkon, Bonnie and Clyde, The Ten, Paper Heart, Tell No One,

I could go on forever.

On preview:
A list for the kind sire, but the problem is I don't know what you watch.

Personally, I always felt that Let Me In was an actually satisfying remake of the original.
Marwencol is awesome and heartbreaking at the same time.
I Think We're Alone Now is awesome as well, but creepy.
While This Film Is Not Yet Rated is somewhat out of date, its still a good eyeopener to the whole MPAA controversy.
I recommend you see Birdemic: Shock and Terror if you haven't - it's like The Room, only ripping off Hitchcock.
Speaking of the so-bad-its-good category, I'd try Passion Play.
Jeff Daniels give a nice performance in Paper Man, along with a spandex dressed Ryan Reynolds.
Speaking of Ryan Reynolds, I always thought Chaos Theory was underrated.
Paper Heart really took me for a surprise. Then again, I like Michael Cera and hipsters.

Finally, I must recommend this classic piece of art. And this art. Let's not forget this one too.
posted by HermanoBluth at 12:00 AM on September 10, 2011 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Great so far, always wanted to see Call Northside 777, didn't know it was on instant. Haven't seen Big Trouble in Little China in a long time, Time for a rewatch. Haven't seen The Lady Vanishes, added to my instant queue.

Thanks guys, keep 'em coming!
posted by Ad hominem at 12:01 AM on September 10, 2011

Side note: A lot of really good documentaries go right to Netflix Streaming after they did their film festival run.

And you might want to check out Hulu, they have exclusive access to a lot of Criterion's films.
posted by HermanoBluth at 12:02 AM on September 10, 2011

Some more Hitchcock recommendations:
Family Plot (overlooked minor work that is really fantastic, and his last film)
The 39 Steps
... Do they have Frenzy? Also minor, overlooked, and highly recommended. The way Hitchcock treats food in that film is just... great.
posted by Menomena at 12:08 AM on September 10, 2011

Ad hominem it might help us if you tell us some of your favourite films. Because, well, I find it hard not to recommend David Cronenberg, for example (I see eXistenz on there) but well, body horror is not for everyone.

(and it's not for me especially... But Cronenberg is an exception).
posted by Menomena at 12:13 AM on September 10, 2011 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: I think I have seen all of Cronenberg's films. Body horror doesn't bother me, don't be afraid to suggest horror films.

I don't know if I could just drop a top 10 in the thread, but things I particularly like, true crime documentaries, black and white dramas(northside 777,39 steps were great suggestions), Jack Lemmon (alas they don't have The Apartment), 70s cinema ( The Conversation, Klute, All the President's Men), Paul Newman, Steve McQeen, Almost anything Paramount did in the 70s. Costume Dramas( age of innocence,Amadeus)

Things I have not seen that many of but would be open to, black and white musicals and comedies, foreign films.
posted by Ad hominem at 12:35 AM on September 10, 2011 [1 favorite]

Hukkle is an odd little gem.
posted by metagnathous at 4:44 AM on September 10, 2011 [2 favorites]

An interesting "weekend on the couch" thread from a couple of years ago with some of them noted as being streamed on netflix is here. Then stupidsexyflanders put together a shared google spreadsheet of highly recomended movies and denoted in one column which are streaming on netflix, then put up a metatalk thread to tell us about it.

I wish I'd seen this thread a month or two ago, I just today canceled Netflix streaming, totally annoyed by their new pricing and the fact that only like 1 of 20 films I searched were streaming.

posted by dancestoblue at 5:16 AM on September 10, 2011 [1 favorite]

Here's a mix:

The 400 Blows
The Rape of Europa
Lust | Caution
We Live In Public
The Piano Teacher
Nights of Cabiria
Live Nude Girls Unite!
Nobody Knows
posted by heyho at 6:39 AM on September 10, 2011

The new BBC Sherlock Holmes mini-series. (Not the one with Robert Downey Jr. The one that takes place in modern times.) Excellent.
posted by BlahLaLa at 6:41 AM on September 10, 2011 [2 favorites]

I just watched My Man Godfrey on Netflix instant the other night, and thought it was really charming. I'd never seen it before.
posted by tomboko at 7:09 AM on September 10, 2011

70s cinema ( The Conversation)

Oh, well then, if you have't seen Night Moves, which is available on netflix streaming, you absolutely absolutely absolutely must. An Arthur Penn-directed 70's noir starring a mustachioed Gene Hackman. Complex and intruiging, and Hackman is great as an ex-jock private detective whose career and life are crumbling around him as he becomes obsessed with a case.

Bonus: Very young James Woods.
Double Bonus: EVEN YOUNGER Melanie Griffith, who in this movie is like the most adorable thing you've ever seen.
Triple Bonus: She gets naked.
posted by dersins at 8:49 AM on September 10, 2011

The Cruise
posted by rhizome at 9:22 AM on September 10, 2011

If you like 70s cinema, Robert Altman made some of my favourite films in that decade: California Split, The Long Goodbye, McCabe & Mrs. Miller, Nashville. Not sure on their Netflix Instant availability but worth checking out.
posted by Menomena at 9:34 AM on September 10, 2011

I forgot to switch my plan so I've been using streaming before it goes away. I stumbled upon "Two Man Group" featuring Brad and Colin from "Whose Line Is It Anyway." Mostly the same improv concept but... I laughed and laughed.

Also, the stream's quality isn't great, but I loved "Charade." Audrey Hepburn and Cary Grant, with Walter Matthau, James Coburn, and George Kennedy. Hilarious, tense, and fun.
posted by TheSecretDecoderRing at 10:33 AM on September 10, 2011

I have been in love with Netflix' foreign films section lately and would highly recommend (sorry for no hyperlinks, I'm just wrapping up at work...sorry work!):

"A Prophet"
"Sin Nombre"
"Tell No One"

and I have high hopes for the next one on my list: "The Secret in Their Eyes".

This is Netflix Canada, mind you, so not sure if all of these are available both sides of the border.

Not sure how you tend to watch your Netflix but I get good results for new picks by signing in on my computer so I can very easily sort large quantities of films by their recommended-for-me star rating, in a handy list format (as opposed to the PS3's 'all over the damn place' approach). After some Rotten Tomato-ing it's off to the PS3 to watch 'em on the big screen :-)
posted by Anizev at 1:07 PM on September 10, 2011

The Eagle
posted by misha at 1:34 PM on September 10, 2011

Cat on a Hot Tin Roof
Kramer vs. Kramer
Good Will Hunting
posted by wondrous strange snow at 4:39 PM on September 10, 2011

I am very surprised at how slim the asian foreign film pickings are for Instant Watch - while each of these films are worth watching I wouldn't call most of them the director's best work.

The Wayward Cloud
The Overture(Hoam Rong)
Owl and the Sparrow
Nobody Knows(Dare mo shiranai)
Three Times(Zui Hao De Shi Guang)
The Isle(Seom)
Electric Shadows
Spider Forest(Geomi Sup)

Note that many of the older European and kung fu movies on Instant Watch are dubbed only - and as such, are worthless. All listed above are subtitled.
posted by aninom at 4:50 PM on September 10, 2011

Seconding The Parking Lot Movie. A must see.
posted by No Shmoobles at 3:38 PM on September 11, 2011 [1 favorite]

Tuya's Marriage
The Great Match
The Maid
Streets of Fire
Intimate Stories
Powwow Highway
Travellers and Magicians
Repo Man
True Stories
posted by I'm Brian and so's my wife! at 7:34 PM on September 11, 2011

are there any series available? like star wars, lord of the rings or the godfather? that'll keep you busy for a while
posted by AlliSchnur at 9:18 PM on September 11, 2011

Eat Drink Man Woman
Brokeback Mountain
Mrs Doubtfire
Muriel's Wedding
Four Weddings and a Funeral
Please Vote For Me
Afghan Star
Client 9
Me and You and Everyone We Know
Live-In Maid
For Your Consideration
Y Tu Mama Tambien
This Is Spinal Tap
Monsoon Wedding
Last Train Home
Mad Hot Ballroom
Somers Town
Let The Right One In
Anvil the Story of Anvil
Fish Tank
The Order of Myths
After the Wedding
Mid-August Lunch
Encounters at the End of the World
Before Sunset
Waste Land
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
Father of the Bride
posted by dracomarca at 12:09 PM on September 12, 2011 [1 favorite]

I personally suggest the movie "Timer" (

Different look on love and how one might end up with their "soul mate" if you were to have a

literal timer embedded on your wrist.

Alot of pretty faces to look at and might even rethink your relationship, haha.
posted by jcleofe00 at 11:22 AM on September 13, 2011

Kolya, Some Folks Call It a Sling Blade, Muriel's Wedding, the original Ocean's Eleven, Alice. Netflix also has a fair amount of Bollywood movies if you want to explore that genre.
posted by anotherkate at 7:41 PM on September 13, 2011

Oldboy was fantastic. Incredible suspenseful psychological story, great acting, crazy good photography. Brilliant all around.

It's dubbed, but don't let that deter you, the excellence totally shines through.
posted by Skygazer at 9:44 PM on September 15, 2011


surprisingly interesting if a bit low budget movie.
posted by The Violet Cypher at 10:23 AM on September 19, 2011

Did you say costume dramas? Try Downton Abbey: several episodes from the sinking of the Titanic to the eve of the Great War.
posted by gentilknight at 6:29 PM on September 26, 2011

Response by poster: Thanks for all the great answers! I need to figure out how to aggregate all these!

Just came across another incredibly useful site

instant watch DB which has various top 100 and AFI lists
posted by Ad hominem at 5:38 PM on October 8, 2011 [2 favorites]

Pale Flower

60s Japanese gangster flick. A lost gem. A lean dark tour de force, hardboiled goddamn motherfuckin' classic, that unfolds it's layers and metaphors like a great book. (Via Roger Ebert's twitter feed).
posted by Skygazer at 3:48 AM on October 9, 2011

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