Table of Contents
As August draws to a close, it’s time to update my list for the best movies added to Netflix
In the first section of this article, I’ll detail which ten movies stand out the most. Then below that, you’ll find a long list of honorable mentions that have captivated audiences over the course of this past year. Several movies have come and gone from this list, but I’m hoping that, all in all, this article provides a comprehensive view of what 2023 has looked like for Netflix subscribers.
The 10 Best New Movies on Netflix in 2023
You Are So Not Invited To My Bat Mitzvah
Directed by Sammi Cohen, this vibrant tale of friendship, rivalry, and tradition dances around two besties, Stacy (Sunny Sandler) and Lydia (Samantha Lorraine). From girlhood, they’ve dreamt of legendary bat mitzvahs. But life, fueled by teenage whims and the charismatic Andy Goldfarb (Dylan Hoffman), tosses their plans into disarray. This heartwarming, comedic saga showcases not just Hebrew school drama but the true essence of friendship. Can they mend bridges in time? With Adam Sandler’s stellar presence and a backdrop of traditional dances, it’s a touching ride through adolescence.
The Pope’s Exorcist
Envision an atmospheric battle of good versus evil. Under Julius Avery’s direction, Russel Crowe brilliantly embodies Father Gabriele Amorth, the Vatican’s renowned exorcist. Over his lifetime, he’s faced countless demons, having performed a staggering 100,000 exorcisms. This isn’t your clichéd horror flick. Crowe brings a charisma that turns this eerie tale into an unexpectedly delightful journey. Accompanied by Daniel Zovatto, Alex Essoe, and Franco Nero, this film shows the powerful synergy between faith, drama, and relentless evil.
Heart of Stone
In a world of covert operations and high stakes, Gal Gadot emerges as Rachel Stone, an elite agent with secrets up her sleeve. Directed by the skilled Tom Harper, Stone isn’t just another spy; she belongs to the Charter, an enigmatic group of top-tier agents. Their goal? Global peace. But peace comes at a price. The mysterious artifact, the Heart, can tilt the balance of world power. Enter Keya Dhawan (Alia Bhatt), with ambitions that threaten harmony. With Jamie Dornan supporting as MI6’s Parker, the film becomes a ticking clock of action, intrigue, and heart-stopping moments.
The Magician’s Elephant
Wendy Rogers weaves a magical narrative where young Peter’s quest to find his lost sister pivots around an enigmatic elephant and a magician. Guided by a seer’s counsel, Peter’s journey intertwines challenges with heart and charm. While Noah Jupe portrays the determined orphan, actors like Mandy Patinkin, Natasia Demetriou, and Benedict Wong create an enchanting world. This adaptation strikes a balance between whimsy and profound lessons about faith and self-belief.
Inspired by Akira Kurosawa’s timeless classic Ikiru, Oliver Hermanus’ Living is a poignant reflection on life, legacy, and fleeting time. As a civil servant diagnosed with a terminal condition, Bill Nighy delivers an Oscar-nominated performance, journeying from despair to purpose. With a supporting cast, including Aimee Lou Wood, Alex Sharp, and Tom Burke, the story revolves around the pursuit of lasting significance amid life’s ephemeral nature.
What’s more thrilling than being stranded millions of years in Earth’s past? In Scott Beck and Bryan Woods’ gripping tale, Adam Driver’s Mills faces this nightmare. Following a cataclysmic crash, Mills, along with young survivor Koa (Ariana Greenblatt), navigates a primeval world teeming with predatory threats. A tight-knit thriller, the film offers a unique twist on survival against the odds.
The future unfurls a cybernetic tapestry in Yeon Sang-ho’s vision. Amidst a cosmic civil war, an AI researcher strives to restore peace, cloning her heroic mother’s brain. With Kang Soo-yeon at the helm, supported by Kim Hyun-joo and Ryu Kyung-soo, the narrative elegantly intertwines emotions, ethics, and cutting-edge technology in a poignant mother-daughter exploration.
Dive into a digital maze in this thrilling narrative directed by Will Merrick and Nick Johnson. When June’s mother mysteriously vanishes during a Colombian vacation, a quest unfolds, revealing layers of international intrigue. From her LA base, June, played convincingly by Storm Reid, harnesses the digital realm to decipher the truth. With Joaquim de Almeida, Ken Leung, and Amy Landecker adding depth, the story transforms into a suspenseful odyssey, blurring the lines between reality and virtual deception.
Michael Morris introduces us to Leslie, a Texan mother trying to balance dreams and realities. Andrea Riseborough’s Oscar-nominated portrayal delves deep into struggles, from a lottery windfall’s fleeting ecstasy to the agonizing depths of addiction. Supported by Allison Janney, Andre Royo, and Marc Maron, this film showcases life’s unpredictable oscillations between hope and despair.
The Woman King
Gina Prince-Bythewood crafts a powerful narrative set in 1800s Africa. This isn’t just history; it’s a testament to the all-female warriors of Dahomey, who showcased strength beyond imagination. As Gen. Nanisca, Viola Davis leads the charge, nurturing and preparing young warriors for a looming external threat. The challenge isn’t just to protect their homeland, but to safeguard a legacy. With formidable talents like Thuso Mbedu, Lashana Lynch, and John Boyega by her side, it’s a cinematic experience blending culture, combat, and charisma.
Here are several other great movies that have been added to the Netflix library in 2023.
- A Man Called Otto – Grumpy widower Otto forms an unexpected bond with a spirited pregnant neighbor, Marisol, changing his perspective.
- Bird Box Barcelona – After a force causes mass suicides, Sebastián and Anna journey through Barcelona with other survivors, facing an even greater unseen threat.
- Chupa – In Mexico, a boy stumbles upon a juvenile chupacabra, a legendary creature, concealed in his grandfather’s shed during a family vacation.
- Dog Gone – Rob Lowe headlines this poignant biopic about a young man’s unwavering quest to find his beloved dog, lost amidst the vast wilderness of the Appalachian Trail.
- Extraction 2 – Tyler Rake embarks on a mission to rescue a Georgian gangster’s family from prison, leading to a perilous venture in Bangladesh.
- Furies – This electrifying Vietnamese martial arts film zooms in on three relentless vigilantes who embark on a mission to dismantle a competing crime syndicate.
- Hunger – Aoy, a stir-fry noodle restaurant owner in Bangkok, receives an offer to join Thailand’s top luxury chef team, questioning the essence of haute cuisine.
- Luther: The Fallen Sun – Idris Elba reprises his role as the infamous London detective John Luther, a hardened anti-hero forced to escape prison and track down a deranged serial killer.
- Marry My Dead Body – Policeman Wu Ming-Han finds himself betrothed to a deceased gay man, Mao Pang-Yu, after picking up a mysterious wedding envelope, leading them to seek justice together.
- Minions: The Rise of Gru – Explore the uproarious genesis of young Gru’s journey to become the most formidable villain, steered by his endearing Minion cohorts, in this comical animated tale.
- Murder Mystery 2 – Private detectives Nick and Audrey are drawn into an international case when a friend is kidnapped.
- Pamela, a Love Story – Dive into this riveting documentary chronicling the exhilarating and tumultuous journey of Pamela Anderson, charting her vibrant life and illustrious career.
- Poisoned: The Dirty Truth About Your Food – This documentary uncovers food industry deceptions, examining foodborne illnesses and the dangers lurking in the American food supply.
- Seasons – After numerous relationship failures, two best friends decide to seek love again, only to realize they might be each other’s perfect match. Romantic comedy.
- Take Care of Maya – A child’s puzzling ailment leads to a diagnosis of medical child abuse, but it turns out the final diagnosis is a harmful mistake. Investigative documentary.
- The Last Kingdom: Seven Kings Must Die – After King Edward’s death, Uthred (Alexander Dreymon) combats England’s ensuing chaos, striving for unity in this thrilling spin-off.
- The Monkey King – Born with powers from a rock, Monkey aims to impress his peers by defeating all the land’s demons, only to grapple with his own oversized ego.
- The Mother – Jennifer Lopez stars as a combat specialist drawn from obscurity to protect her child from lethal outlaws in this heart-pounding action movie.
- The Out-Laws – A bank manager about to get married suspects his future in-laws are the criminals who recently robbed his bank. Comedy.
- The Pale Blue Eye – In a snowbound village, detective Augustus Landor and poet Edgar Allan Poe collaborate to solve a mysterious murder, facing numerous sinister suspects.
- The Perfect Find – A 40-year-old woman balances her career and biological clock while diving into a risky secret romance that could shatter her second chance at life. Romantic comedy.
- The Raid 2 – Jakarta cop Rama, after a brutal gang fight, goes undercover in prison, befriending a crime kingpin’s son to dismantle a criminal empire.
- The River Wild – A whitewater rafting trip turns perilous when secrets emerge, forcing the participants to battle treacherous currents and unforeseen threats.
- The Snowman – Detective Harry Hole hunts for the elusive “Snowman Killer” during the first snowfall, engaging in a tense cat-and-mouse chase to stop the murders.
- The Son – Peter’s life takes a turn when his ex-wife reveals their son, Nicholas, is deeply troubled. He tries to mend their relationship, reflecting on his own past.
- The Tutor – A tutor at a mansion gets entangled with his student’s obsessions, leading to threats and dark revelations. Psychological thriller.
- They Cloned Tyrone – A drug dealer’s mysterious resurrection leads three individuals to uncover a conspiracy where experiments are conducted on the Black community. Mystery caper.
- True Spirit – A 16-year-old Australian girl embarks on a solo sailing journey around the world, confronting her deepest fears. Based on Jessica Watson’s true story.
- Untold: Johnny Football – The documentary charts the rise and fall of footballer Johnny Manziel, covering his achievements, struggles, and personal challenges.
- Unknown: The Lost Pyramid – In the desert of Saqqara, two doctors hunt for an elusive pyramid and a tomb, diving deep into Egypt’s ancient mysteries. Documentary.
- We Have a Ghost – Teen Kevin discovers a friendly ghost, Ernest, in his new home. When the ghost goes viral online, challenges arise.
- WHAM! – A documentary retracing the rise of Wham from childhood friends to 80s pop sensations, marking the 40th anniversary of their debut album.
- Whitney Houston: I Wanna Dance With Somebody – Chronicles the remarkable rise from anonymity to stardom of an epoch-defining vocalist, with Kasi Lemmons at the helm.
- You People – Ezra mistakenly hops into Amira’s car, thinking it’s his rideshare. Their budding relationship leads to comedic clashes between their families.
- Your Place or Mine – Debbie and Peter, opposites and best friends, switch houses for a week, leading them to reassess what they truly want in life.