Netflix began producing its own content in 2012, debuting the series “Lilyhammer,” and following it with the critically acclaimed “House of Cards” one year later. In 2014, Netflix became the first streaming service to be nominated for an Academy Award, for the original documentary “The Square.” Since then, Netflix has won 16 Oscars in 11 categories out of 116 nominations in 24 categories – three of them for feature films (not including documentaries). (Netflix rival Amazon Prime has won Oscars, too. These are the best Amazon Prime original movies in the company’s history.)
To determine the best Netflix original movies, 24/7 Tempo developed an index using average ratings on IMDb, an online movie database owned by Amazon, and a combination of audience scores and Tomatometer scores on Rotten Tomatoes, an online movie and TV review aggregator, as of September 2022, weighting all ratings equally. Documentaries were not considered. Directorial and cast data is from IMDb.
Of the 25 Netflix original movies on the list, 16 of them have achieved a Rotten Tomatoes Tomatometer score of 90% or above. The work of Oscar-winning directors Martin Scorsese, Bong Joon Ho, the Coen Brothers, and Alfonso Cuarón is included on the list. Cuarón’s autobiographical movie “Roma” is the most Oscar-honored of the Netflix motion pictures, capturing three golden statues in 2019. (The platform’s original series have also gained acclaim. These are the 50 best Netflix original series.)
There are plenty of rom-com offerings, one featuring the venerable duo of Robert Redford and Jane Fonda, who first starred together in 1966. Two other rom-coms prominently feature Asian performers, with one of the films offering a different take on the Cyrano de Bergerac theme.
Other films on the list are a bit heavier. “First They Killed My Father” is about the impact of the bloody takeover of Cambodia by the Khmer Rouge on a 5-year-old child, while “The Night Comes for Us” spares no graphic violence in the story about redemption in the Indonesian underworld.
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