Watching: The 50 Best TV Shows on Netflix

Also, the 50 best movies.

By The Watching Team

Are you looking for a weekend movie or new TV series to start? Regardless of what streaming service you subscribe to, we’re here for you. We’ve gone through Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime and Disney Plus to find the best movies and TV shows on each service.


Here’s one of the 50 best movies on Netflix.

Adam Sandler in “Uncut Gems.”A24

‘Uncut Gems’

Josh and Benny Safdie have all but singlehandedly kept the tradition of the grimy New York street movie alive in the 21st century, with films like “Heaven Knows What” and “Good Time” (also streaming on Netflix) explicitly recalling the sweaty desperation of ’70s Gotham cinema. Their latest is also their best, featuring a career-high performance from Adam Sandler as a diamond dealer and inveterate gambler whose eternal quest for one big score puts his livelihood — and his very life — on the line. Manohla Dargis called it a “rough and glittering thing of beauty.”


Want a more immersive experience? Here is one of the best TV shows on Netflix.

“Money Heist” is a bank-robbery thriller from Spain.via Netflix

‘Money Heist’

In this hyper-kinetic Spanish action-adventure, an eclectic team of skilled crooks helps a mysterious genius known as “the Professor” steal over 2 billion euros, in a caper that inevitably necessitates other crimes. The unpredictability and outsized characters of “Money Heist” have made it one of the rare foreign television series to find a big and appreciative audience in the United States. Our critic called it one of the best international TV shows of the 2010s, writing, “This puzzle-box of a series employs time trickery, unreliable narration, flashy graphics and every other trick it can think of to keep you locked into its overheated plot.”


Have a Hulu subscription? It’s a lot to wade through. We can help!

Julian Dennison, left, and Sam Neil in “Hunt for the Wilderpeople.”The Orchard

‘Hunt for the Wilderpeople’

This riotous, high-spirited, “charming and funny” family comedy could have been played straight, as a Disney-style, kid-friendly adventure yarn. But the writer and director Taika Waititi (“Jojo Rabbit”) instead delivers a delicious sendup of action movie tropes while sneakily exploring a family dynamic that pays off with surprising warmth and sweetness. Sam Neill amps up the gruff tenderness that made his turn in “Jurassic Park” so memorable, but the real find here is Julian Dennison, a young leading man so unlikely yet so charismatic that the rest of the movie bends around him.

Amazon Prime doesn’t make it easy to find stuff. Luckily, we have done the work for you.

Tom Burke and Honor Swinton Byrne in Joanna Hogg’s “The Souvenir.”Agatha A. Nitecka/A24

‘The Souvenir’

The great British writer/director Joanna Hogg tells a story of youthful exuberance, romantic recklessness and unchecked addiction in early ’80s London. Her heroine is Julie (Honor Swinton Byrne, flawless), an idealistic film student who finds herself pulled, time and again, into the orbit of Anthony (Tom Burke), whose roguish charm covers a considerable number of concerning flaws. Tilda Swinton (Byrne’s real-life mother) co-stars as Julie’s concerned mum. Hogg’s film is quiet yet revelatory, trusting its audience with these characters’ secrets — and trusting us enough to fill in their blanks. A.O. Scott raves, “This is one of the saddest movies you can imagine, and it’s an absolute joy to watch.”

Disney Plus is full of the obvious Disney classics. But there are also great, newer movies, like this one.

Alex Honnold in the documentary “Free Solo.”Jimmy Chin/National Geographic

‘Free Solo’

Daredevils among daredevils, free solo climbers scale rock faces without the aid of a rope, so any false step or slip of the fingers means certain death. “Free Solo” documents the astounding effort of the world-class climber Alex Honnold to top the granite monolith El Capitan in Yosemite National Park, a feat that requires a rare combination of heedless courage and meticulous planning. Jeannette Catsoulis called the documentary “an easy sell to extreme sports enthusiasts.”


Other things to read about other things to watch.

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