John Cleese, Neil Innes, Michael Palin and Eric on the set of 'Monty Python and the Holy Grail'. (Photo by John Downing/Express/Getty Images)

It’s Sunday night and you’re ready to settle on the couch with your favorite snacks and a classic film. So, what are the best classic movies on Netflix right now? We put together a list of some of the best old movies on Netflix to get you started.

Best Classic Movies on Netflix to Watch

Whether you consider a classic movie to be something made before a specific era or just a film that transcends trends and time, whether your preferred genre is Hollywood classic, thriller, musical, or ’80s cheese, there’s something for you on this list!

To make it easy for you to peruse, we’ve put this list of the best classic movies streaming on Netflix in chronological order, going from a 1949 black-and-white film noir all the way up to a dark comedy from 1988. Take your pick!

Note that these must-see classics on Netflix might not be available in all locations.

The Third Man

Posted by The Third Man on Sunday, December 20, 2009

Released: 1949

Genre: Thriller/Film Noir

Run Time: 104 min.

MPAA Film Rating: Unrated

Movie Ratings:

IMDb: 8.2/10 Stars

Metascore: 97

Rotten Tomatoes: 99%

Director: Carol Reed

Cast: Joseph Cotten (as Holly Martins); Alida Valli (as Anna Schmidt); Orson Welles (as Harry Lime); Trevor Howard (Major Calloway); Bernard Lee (as Sergeant Paine)

Plot: We have a true black-and-white, film noir classic to start off our list of the best classic movies on Netflix. After World War II, an unemployed pulp fiction writer, Holly Martins, makes his way to Vienna. Upon arriving, the American finds that his old school friend, Harry Lime, who’d promised him a job, has been killed in a suspicious accident. As he learns more about his friend, Holly gets pulled into a world of black-market dealings, corruption, and murder.

Watch On Netflix





Strangers on a Train

“Strangers on a Train”: Two travelers (Farley Granger, Robert Walker) make a pact to get rid of someone for the other person in a tale that’s been retold in numerous variations!

Posted by Alfred Hitchcock on Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Released: 1951

Genre: Thriller/Film Noir

Run Time: 101 min.

MPAA Film Rating: PG

Movie Ratings:

IMDb: 8.0/10 Stars

Metascore: 88

Rotten Tomatoes: 98%

Director: Alfred Hitchcock

Cast: Farley Granger (as Guy Haines); Ruth Roman (as Anne Morton); Robert Walker (as Bruce Antony); Leo G. Carroll (as Sen. Morton)

Plot: You can’t get much more classic than Alfred Hitchcock! And if you’re into black-and-white films, you definitely want this on your list of best classic movies on Netflix to watch. In this thriller, a man who despises his father hatches a murder-swap plot with a tennis player he meets on a train, who wants to be rid of his wife. But all doesn’t go as planned…

Watch On Netflix

Also See: Netflix’s “Another Life”: Cast, Plot, and Review of Katee Sackhoff’s New Sci-Fi Series

Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?

Posted by Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? on Saturday, August 10, 2013

Released: 1966

Genre: Drama

Run Time: 131 min.

MPAA Film Rating: Unrated

Movie Ratings:

IMDb: 8.0/10 Stars

Metascore: 75

Rotten Tomatoes: 95%

Director: Mike Nichols

Cast: Elizabeth Taylor (as Martha); Richard Burton (as George); George Segal (as Nick); Sandy Dennis (as Honey)

Plot: You can’t really go wrong with Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton. This Oscar winner, based on a play by Edward Albee, goes down the dark and treacherous path of marriage discord. A middle-aged couple, George and Martha, suck an unsuspecting young couple into their hurricane of heavy drinking, verbal abuse, and mind games when they invite them over for a nightcap. If you love a psychological plot, it’s definitely one of the best classic movies on American Netflix right now.

Watch On Netflix

Bonnie and Clyde

Posted by Bonnie & Clyde on Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Released: 1967

Genre: Action/Biography

Run Time: 111 min.

MPAA Film Rating: R

Movie Ratings:

IMDb: 7.8/10 Stars

Metascore: 86

Rotten Tomatoes: 88%

Director: Arthur Penn

Cast: Warren Beatty (as Clyde Barrow); Faye Dunaway (as Bonnie Parker); Michael J. Pollard (as C.W. Moss); Gene Hackman (as Buck Barrow)

Plot: Adapted from the true-life tale of American anti-heroes Bonnie and Clyde, this Oscar-winning film was groundbreaking for its time, earning it a place on our list of the best classic movies on Netflix. When Bonnie Parker, a restless waitress, meets a charming but sketchy man on the move named Clyde Barrow, her life changes drastically. Wanting to escape the poverty of Depression times, the young lovers embark on a far-reaching crime spree.

Watch On Netflix





The Graduate

We've all had a Mrs. (or Mr.) Robinson in our lives. Who was yours?

Posted by The Graduate on Friday, November 22, 2013

Released: 1967

Genre: Drama/Comedy

Run Time:  106 min.

MPAA Film Rating: PG

Movie Ratings:

IMDb: 8.0/10 Stars

Metascore: 83

Rotten Tomatoes: 88%

Director: Mike Nichols

Cast: Dustin Hoffman (as Ben Braddock); Anne Bancroft (as Mrs. Robinson); Katherine Ross (as Elaine Robinson)

Plot: Ben Braddock is back at his parents’ home after graduating from college, with the question of what he’s going to do with his life hanging over his head. But he’s distracted from life decisions by an affair with an older woman he’s known all his life. And when Mrs. Robinson’s daughter enters the picture, things go to a whole other level of complicated.

Watch On Netflix

A Clockwork Orange

Posted by A Clockwork Orange on Sunday, February 22, 2009

Released: 1971

Genre: Drama/Sci-Fi

Run Time: 136 min.

MPAA Film Rating: R

Movie Ratings:

IMDb: 8.3/10 Stars

Metascore: 80

Rotten Tomatoes: 90%

Director: Stanley Kubrick

Cast: Malcolm McDowell (as Alex DeLarge); Patrick Magee (as Mr. Alexander); Michael Bates (as Chief Guard); Warren Clarke (as Dim)

Plot: This disturbing but fascinating dystopian crime movie is based on a novel of the same title by Anthony Burgess. The film, set in a futuristic Britain, follows Alex DeLarge, an antisocial youth with violent tendencies who leads a small gang of delinquents he calls “droogs.” When Alex lands in prison, he’s given a choice for rehabilitation with an experimental government program. But things don’t go as expected when Alex is released.

Watch On Netflix

Check This Out: Priah Ferguson Wiki: Facts about Erica Sinclair from Netflix’s “Stranger Things”

Deliverance

Posted by Deliverance on Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Released: 1972

Genre: Drama/Thriller

Run Time: 109 min.

MPAA Film Rating: R

Movie Ratings:

IMDb: 7.7/10 Stars

Metascore: 82

Rotten Tomatoes: 93%

Director: John Boorman

Cast: Jon Voight (as Ed); Burt Reynolds (as Lewis); Ned Beatty (as Bobby); Ronny Cox (as Drew)

Plot: Four city friends go on a canoe trip through the remote (and fictitious) Cahulawassee River area in Georgia. The trip ends up being much more than they bargained for, leading the men down dangerous paths they couldn’t have imagined. This critically acclaimed film was nominated for three Oscars and five Golden Globes, helping it earn its place on our list of the best classic movies on Netflix. If you can handle some disturbing content, it’s worth delving into this cult classic.

Watch On Netflix





Monty Python and the Holy Grail

Posted by Monty Python & the Holy Grail on Monday, February 27, 2012

Released: 1975

Genre: Comedy/Fantasy

Run Time:  91 min.

MPAA Film Rating: PG

Movie Ratings:

IMDb: 8.3/10 Stars

Metascore: 93

Rotten Tomatoes: 97%

Directors: Terry Gilliam, Terry Jones

Cast: Graham Chapman (as King Arthur, Voice of God, and more); John Cleese (as The Black Knight, Sir Launcelot the Brave, and more); Eric Idle (as Dead Collector, Roger the Shrubber, and more); Terry Gilliam (as Patsy, Sir Bors, and more); Terry Jones (as Sir Bedevere, Prince Herbert, and more); Michael Palin (as Narrator, Sir Galahad the Pure, and more)

Plot: Out of the best classic movies currently on Netflix, this one just might make you laugh the hardest. This wacky comedy takes us back to 10th-century England, following the legendary King Arthur on a hilarious quest to find new recruits for his Knights of the Round Table, and ultimately to search out the Holy Grail. Watch out for the dreaded Rabbit of Caerbannog!

Watch On Netflix

All the President’s Men

Robert Redford and Dustin Hoffman in All The President's Men which earned 8 Oscar nominations (including Best Picture) and took home 4 statuettes.

Posted by The Academy on Friday, August 18, 2017

Released: 1976

Genre: Drama/Biography

Run Time: 138 min.

MPAA Film Rating: PG

Movie Ratings:

IMDb: 8.0/10 Stars

Metascore: 80

Rotten Tomatoes: 93%

Director: Alan J. Pakula

Cast: Dustin Hoffman (as Carl Bernstein); Robert Redford (as Bob Woodward); Jack Warden (as Harry Rosenfeld); Martin Balsam (as Howard Simons); Hal Holbrook (as Deep Throat)

Plot: Based on the non-fiction book by Carl Bernstein and Bob Woodward, this film shows how two journalists investigating a minor story for The Washington Post stumble onto a major, history-making conspiracy. All the President’s Men dramatizes how Bernstein and Woodward uncovered the infamous 1972 Watergate Scandal, which ultimately triggered the resignation of then-President Richard Nixon.

Watch On Netflix

Taxi Driver

Posted by Taxi Driver on Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Released: 1976

Genre: Drama

Run Time: 114 min.

MPAA Film Rating: R

Movie Ratings:

IMDb: 8.3/10 Stars

Metascore: 94

Rotten Tomatoes: 98%

Director: Martin Scorsese

Cast: Robert De Niro (as Travis Bickle); Jodie Foster (as Iris “Easy” Steensma); Cybill Shepherd (as Betsy); Harvey Keitel (as Charles “Sport” Rain); Albert Brooks (as Tom)

Plot: Ranked by many as one of the greatest films of all time, Taxi Driver definitely deserves its place on the list of best classic movies streaming on Netflix! This ’70s classic revolves around a struggling Vietnam War vet, Travis Bickle, working the streets of New York City as a taxi driver. Dealing regularly with the seedy underbelly of the city, Travis Bickle becomes increasingly unhinged and turns to violence in a misguided attempt to make the world a better place.

Watch On Netflix





Raiders of the Lost Ark

Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)

Posted by Indiana Jones on Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Released: 1981

Genre: Action

Run Time: 115 min.

MPAA Film Rating: PG

Movie Ratings:

IMDb: 8.5/10 Stars

Metascore: 85

Rotten Tomatoes: 95%

Director: Steven Spielberg

Cast: Harrison Ford (as Indiana Jones); Karen Allen (as Marion Ravenwood); Paul Freeman (as Dr. Rene Belloq); John Rhys-Davies (as Sallah); Ronald Lacey (as Major Arnold Toht)

Plot: For some people, a list of the best classic movies on Netflix would be made up of just Spielberg productions! We won’t go that far, but we’re definitely recommending more than one from the iconic filmmaker. And for many people, Raiders of the Lost Ark might just be their favorite film of all time. This first film in the franchise centers on Indiana Jones, an archaeologist on a mission to find the fabled Ark of the Covenant. With the year being 1936, of course Indy is pitted against the dreaded Nazis in this fun action-adventure.

Watch On Netflix

Gremlins

Rule #3: Don't EVER feed them after midnight

Posted by Gremlins on Friday, May 4, 2012

Released: 1984

Genre: Fantasy/Horror/Comedy

Run Time: 106 min.

MPAA Film Rating: PG

Movie Ratings:

IMDb: 7.3/10 Stars

Metascore: 70

Rotten Tomatoes: 84%

Director: Joe Dante

Cast: Hoyt Axton (as Randall Peltzer); Zach Galligan (as Billy Peltzer); Phoebe Cates (as Kate Beringer)

Plot: Gremlins is a rollicking combination of comedy and darker fantasy. A boy gets a weird but adorable new pet…that comes with some very specific rules. Guess what? He breaks those rules…and when he does, some small, mischievous, and dangerous monsters called gremlins are unleashed on his small town. 

Watch On Netflix

Platoon

Posted by Platoon on Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Released: 1986

Genre: Drama/War

Run Time: 120 min.

MPAA Film Rating: R

Movie Ratings:

IMDb: 8.1/10 Stars

Metascore: 92

Rotten Tomatoes: 88%

Director: Oliver Stone

Cast: Charlie Sheen (as Chris Taylor); Tom Berenger (as Sgt. Bob Barnes); Willem Dafoe (as Sgt. Elias Gordon)

Plot: If classic war movies are more your speed, then Platoon is a must-see. A naïve young American gets a rude awakening when he joins the armed forces and is shipped out to Vietnam. He finds conflict not only with the enemy, but also within his own platoon, and experiences the true horrors of war.

Watch On Netflix

She’s Gotta Have It

Posted by She's Gotta Have It on Sunday, June 25, 2017

Released: 1986

Genre: Comedy/Romance

Run Time: 84 min.

MPAA Film Rating: R

Movie Ratings:

IMDb: 6.7/10 Stars

Metascore: 79

Rotten Tomatoes: 90%

Director: Spike Lee

Cast: Tracy Camilla Johns (as Nola Darling); Tommy Redmond Hicks (as Jamie Overstreet); John Canada Terrell (as Greer Childs); Spike Lee (as Mars Blackmon)

Plot: With a tiny budget of $175,000, groundbreaking director Spike Lee made a big impact with his first feature-length film, She’s Gotta Have It. Mainly done in black and white, this movie follows Nola Darling, a woman who is sexually involved with three men at the same time. Each of her partners wants her to be monogamous with just him, but fiercely independent Nola has other ideas.

Watch On Netflix




Heathers

Winona Ryder in Heathers (1988) dir. Michael Lehmann

Posted by Cinema, My Nostalgia on Sunday, March 10, 2019

Released: 1988

Genre: Comedy (Dark)

Run Time: 103 min.

MPAA Film Rating: R

Movie Ratings:

IMDb: 7.3/10 Stars

Metascore: 72

Rotten Tomatoes: 94%

Director: Michael Lehmann

Cast: Winona Ryder (as Veronica Sawyer); Christian Slater (as J.D.); Shannen Doherty (as Heather Duke); Lisanne Falk (as Heather McNamara); Kim Walker (as Heather Chandler)

Plot: This is a darker look at the common ’80s theme of popularity in high school. When a smart teen girl meets a sociopathic outsider, they combine forces to teach the popular kids, the Heathers, a dangerous lesson. If you’ve ever suffered at the hands of bullies or the cool kids at school, then you’ll want to move this one to the top of your list of best classic movies on Netflix to watch.

Watch On Netflix

Don’t Miss: Best Psychological Thrillers to Watch on Netflix

Loading Comments..