Even though Netflix is mostly concerned with offering its subscribers new and original content, the streaming service also features many classic movies. From black and white dramas from the 1930s to the best movies of the 1970s, 1980s, and even 1990s, there plenty of critically-acclaimed classic films to watch on Netflix.
Here’s a look at our picks for the best classic movies on Netflix that you can watch right now.
Best classic movies on Netflix:
Editor’s note: We will update the list of best classic movies on Netflix as Netflix adds and removes movies.
1. Schindler’s List
Hoping to make a fortune, German businessman Oskar Schindler arrives in the German-occupied Polish city of Krakow. Sensing an opportunity to make money from the Nazis’ rise to power during World War II, Schindler founds a company that makes cookware and utensils.
Making these items are unpaid Jews, who are forced to live in Krakow’s ghettos due to the Nazis’ increasing presence. Schindler soon grows a conscience as more of his unpaid employees are sent to the nearby labor camp. Even if it means giving up a potential fortune, Schindler wants to prevent as many Jews going to the camp as possible.
2. Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark
Indiana Jones is not your run-of-the-mill archaeologist. After all, he’s willing to lose limbs to get a solid-gold idol from somewhere in the Peruvian forest. Taking notice of Jones’ exploits, Army intelligence agents authorize him to find the Ark of the Covenant to prevent the Nazis from finding it first.
As things often do with Indiana Jones, nothing goes as planned. Jones soon finds out the Ark is anything but a normal artifact. Not only does Jones have to fight his way through the Nazis, but he has to also fight through whatever the Ark contains.
3. Taxi Driver
It’s not easy being an ex-Marine who’s also an insomniac. Just ask Travis Bickle, who copes with his insomnia by working the night shift as a taxi driver.
Spurned by a potential lover and disgusted by the dysfunction of New York City, Bickle’s worldview quickly turns into one of violence. Whether you’re a presidential candidate or an armed gangster, no one is safe from Bickle and his imagined destiny.
4. Monty Python and the Holy Grail
Considered one of the best comedy films of all time, Monty Python and the Holy Grail takes the Arthurian legend and turns it on its head. That means King Arthur, the Knights of the Round Table, Camelot, and even God are all accounted for.
However, this isn’t a simple retelling of King Arthur’s journey to find the Holy Grail. From the projectionist accidentally putting the wrong film in the projector during the beginning of the movie to Sir Robin the Not-Quite-So-Brave-As-Sir-Lancelot, Monty Python and the Holy Grail messes with your expectations from the very beginning and never lets up.
5. Pulp Fiction
Jules Winnfield and Vincent Vega are two hitmen tasked with finding their employer’s stolen briefcase. Eventually, one of them is tasked with showing the employer’s wife while he’s away.
Later, we meet a boxer who is paid to lose his fight and two thieves who decide to rob a coffee shop. These stories might seem unrelated, but they are woven together in a manner never before seen in cinema. Also, Marvin gets shot in the face. Must have been a speed bump or something.
6. The Graduate
All Benjamin Braddock wants to do is ignore adult advice and float in his parents’ pool. That is, until he has an affair with family friend Mrs. Robinson and eventually discovers he has feelings for Elaine, her daughter.
Determined to be with her, Benjamin follows Elaine to school in an effort to make the relationship work. However, Mrs. Robinson wants none of it and is determined to keep the two apart.
7. Rain Man
Following the death of his father, Charlie Babbitt returns to his hometown to collect his father’s $3 million estate and 1949 Buick Roadmaster. However, it turns out the $3 million is held in trust for Raymond Babbitt, the brother Charlie didn’t know he had.
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Raymond is also an autistic savant, one who can memorize trivia and math equations in a split second. Charlie hopes to exploit Raymond’s gifts, but his reckless abandon forces Charlie to reassess his own values.
8. Groundhog Day
Convinced that national news stardom is within reach, local station weatherman Phil is sent to cover the annual Groundhog Day festivities. Following a freak snowstorm, Phil wakes up the next morning with a heavy sense of deja vu.
However, Phil isn’t going crazy. The same events take place the next day, then the next, then the next. This is no simple deja vu, as Phil realizes he’s stuck in February 2. As the days re-live themselves over and over again, however, Phil is forced to look at other people’s lives and actually care for once.
Those are our picks of the best classic movies on Netflix. Let us know in the comments which classic movies on Netflix are your favorites and if you think we missed anything!