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What to watch on Amazon Prime Video: Movies and shows from every genre

The next time you're scrolling and can't make up your mind, try one of these 40 titles.
By
March 14, 2022
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At some point, you’ve probably found yourself scrolling through endless lists of streaming options without a clue what to watch — we’ve all been there! This guide takes the work out of it for you, highlighting the best shows and movies across a number of genres to narrow down what to watch on Amazon Prime Video.

Read more: What to watch on Netflix

So, read on for our complete guide of what to watch on Amazon Prime, including Amazon originals and licensed titles. And if you’re not already a subscriber, you can hit the link below to sign up.

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Amazon Prime Video
Amazon Prime Video offers access to thousands of movies and TV shows to stream. That includes great original shows and movies like The Boys and The Tomorrow War. You can also sign up for other premium services within Amazon Prime Video.

What to watch on Amazon Prime Video by genre

Comedy

The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel (TV series)

  • Original release: 2017 – present
  • Episode runtime: 55 minutes
  • Genre: Comedy, drama
  • Director/Creator: Amy Sherman-Palladino
  • Main cast: Rachel Brosnahan, Alex Borstein, Michael Zegen

Gilmore Girls creator Amy Sherman-Palladino is the mind behind this clever and popular comedy drama on Amazon. 1950s Jewish housewife Midge Maisel takes up stand-up comedy when her husband leaves her suddenly — and rather unceremoniously. She fights an uphill battle in the male-dominated Manhattan comedy world, with her friend and manager Susie by her side.

Fleabag (TV series)

  • Original release: 2016 – 2019
  • Episode runtime: 27 minutes
  • Genre: Comedy
  • Director/Creator: Phoebe Waller-Bridge
  • Main cast: Phoebe Waller-Bridge, Sian Clifford, Olivia Colman

Phoebe Waller-Bridge’s deadpan comedy about a woman navigating love and family following a tragic loss was a major conversation starter when it aired. It deserved every bit of praise it got and is one of the best shows on Amazon Prime.

Heathers (Film)

  • Release year: 1989
  • Runtime: 103 minutes
  • Genre: Dark comedy
  • Director: Michael Lehmann
  • Main cast: Winona Ryder, Christian Slater

The pitch-black 80s comedy Heathers is one of the very best things to watch on Amazon Prime Video. Starring Gen-X It Girl Winona Ryder and teen heartthrob Christian Slater, the satirical teen movie most notably inspired cult hit Mean Girls. A teen who hangs with the popular girls starts to question their behavior, but when she teams up with the school’s new kid to teach them a lesson, she realizes he may have darker motives than she thought.

 Fargo (Film)

  • Release year: 1996
  • Runtime: 98 minutes
  • Genre: Crime, dark comedy
  • Director: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen
  • Main cast: Frances McDormand, William H. Macy, Steve Buscemi

Joel and Ethan Coen’s Fargo may not at first seem like a comedy, but it does have a dark and mean sense of humor that makes it a timeless classic. A bumbling car salesman hires low-rent criminals to make some cash, but everything goes wrong fast as pregnant local police officer Marge Gunderson puts the pieces together.

Action

Hanna (TV show)

  • Original release: 2019 – 2021
  • Episode runtime: 50 minutes
  • Genre: Action, Thriller
  • Director/Creator: David Farr
  • Main cast: Mireille Enos, Joel Kinnaman, Esme Creed-Miles

Based on the 2011 sleeper hit feature film from Joe Wright, Hanna tells the story of a gifted girl who was raised off-the-grid. Pursued by off-book CIA agents, Hanna uses her skills to unearth the truth about who she is. This coming-of-age thriller is well worth your time.

The Boys (TV show)

  • Original release: 2019 – present
  • Episode runtime: 60 minutes
  • Genre: Action, comedy
  • Director/Creator: Eric Kripke
  • Main cast: Karl Urban, Jack Quaid, Antony Starr

What would happen if superheroes actually existed among us? Or rather, what would happen to those of us without superpowers or the ability to defend ourselves against them? Amazon’s series The Boys imagines a world where capes have their own PR and work for multinational corporations. And a world where a group of regular people decides to stand up to them.

The Thomas Crown Affair (Film)

  • Release year: 1999
  • Runtime: 113 minutes
  • Genre: Suspense
  • Director: John McTiernan
  • Main cast: Pierce Brosnan, Rene Russo, Denis Leary

This remake of the 1968 caper is not to be missed on your list of what to watch on Amazon Prime Video. Pierce Brosnan, in his peak James Bond years, stars as Thomas Crown, a bored billionaire playboy who steals a Monet for fun, and then embarks on a sexy game of cat and mouse with the insurance investigator hired to smoke him out.

The Bourne Ultimatum (Film)

  • Release year: 2007
  • Runtime: 115 minutes
  • Genre: Action, spy
  • Director: Paul Greengrass
  • Main cast: Matt Damon, Julia Stiles, David Strathairn

The last entry in the original Bourne trilogy sees director Paul Greengrass cement his superb takeover of the franchise in part two. Jason Bourne continues his search for answers, finally coming face to face with the architects of Project Treadstone, who can perhaps finally offer him the peace he seeks, or suffer the consequences of standing in his way.

Drama

The Expanse (TV series)

  • Original release: 2015 – 2022
  • Episode runtime: 45 minutes
  • Genre: Science-fiction
  • Director/Creator: Mark Fergus, Hawk Ostby
  • Main cast: Dominique Tipper, Steven Strait, Wes Chatham

A sprawling sci-fi epic based on the novel series by James S.A. Corey, The Expanse is as much a political and military drama as it is a space opera. When humans have colonized Mars, the Asteroid Belt, and other parts of the Solar System, factions fight for resources and galactic control. We follow the crew of one ship, mercenaries trying to bring peace to humanity.

The Underground Railroad (TV series)

  • Original release: 2021
  • Episode runtime: 60 minutes
  • Genre: Historical drama
  • Director/Creator: Barry Jenkins
  • Main cast: Thuso Mbedu, Chase W. Dillon, Joel Edgerton

Moonlight director Barry Jenkins reimagines the historical Underground Railroad in this stunning miniseries based on the novel by Colson Whitehead. While the historical basis saw a network of abolitionists helping secure freedom for individuals escaping slavery, the series imagines a literal railroad, carrying passengers on a train underground to offer a portrait of resistance through metaphor and magical realism.

The Sound Of Metal (Film)

  • Release year: 2020
  • Runtime: 120 minutes
  • Genre: Drama
  • Director: Darius Marder
  • Main cast: Riz Ahmed, Olivia Cooke, Paul Raci

Riz Ahmed plays a musician losing his hearing in this moving portrait of disability, art, and social isolation. The Sound of Metal depicts the difficult choices its protagonist faces without judgment or an easy answer to what are ultimately impossible questions.

One Night in Miami… (Film)

  • Release year: 2021
  • Runtime: 115 minutes
  • Genre: Historical drama
  • Director: Regina King
  • Main cast: Kingsley Ben-Adir, Eli Goree, Aldis Hodge, Leslie Odom Jr.

Oscar-winning actress Regina King makes a stunning directorial debut with this Amazon original film, based on the play by Kemp Powers. One Night in Miami… offers a fictional account of the night Muhammad Ali, Malcolm X, Sam Cooke, and Jim Brown gathered for a night of conversation, addressing pressing issues about Blackness in America, their roles as cultural leaders, and the Civil Rights movement of the 1960s.

Fantasy

The Wheel of Time (TV series)

  • Original release: 2021 – present
  • Episode runtime: 60 minutes
  • Genre: Fantasy, adventure
  • Director/Creator: Rafe Judkins
  • Main cast: Rosamund Pike, Josha Stradowski, Zoë Robins

Based on Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson’s fantasy novels, The Wheel of Time follows Moiraine, a member of an all-female order of magic users known as the Aes Sedai, as she seeks out the Dragon Reborn, the prophesied reincarnation of a powerful being who will either save or destroy humanity.

The Legend of Vox Machina (TV series)

  • Original release: 2022 – present
  • Episode runtime: 25 minutes 
  • Genre: Fantasy, animated
  • Director/Creator: Matthew Mercer
  • Main cast: Laura Bailey, Taliesin Jaffe, Ashley Johnson

Adapted from a Dungeons & Dragons campaign featured on the hit series Critical Role, The Legend of Vox Machina is an easy recommendation for fantasy role-playing fans trying to decide what to watch on Amazon Prime Video. The animated series follows eight unlikely heroes battling for the fate of the realm of Exandria.

It’s a Wonderful Life (Film)

  • Release year: 1946
  • Runtime: 130 minutes
  • Genre: Fantasy, drama, Christmas
  • Director: Frank Capra
  • Main cast: James Stewart, Donna Reed, Lionel Barrymore

A holiday classic with more than a few nods to Charles Dickens’s A Christmas Carol, It’s a Wonderful Life tells the story of George Bailey, a desperate man ready to take his own life. At the last minute, he’s visited by his guardian angel, who walks him through what the world might look like were it not for George’s good deeds over the years. Perhaps there’s value in his life after all.

Highlander (Film)

  • Release year: 1986
  • Runtime: 116 minutes
  • Genre: Fantasy
  • Director: Russell Mulcahy
  • Main cast: Christopher Lambert, Roxanne Hart, Clancy Brown

A classic of fantasy cinema, Highlander sees a forensic specialist getting caught up in a centuries-long battle between an immortal Scottish warrior and his brutal foe on the streets of New York.

Horror

I Know What You Did Last Summer (TV series)

  • Original release: 2021
  • Episode runtime: 46 minutes
  • Genre: Horror
  • Director/Creator: Sara Goodman
  • Main cast: Madison Iseman, Bill Heck, Brianne Tju

If you’re a fan of 90s slasher films wondering what to watch on Amazon Prime Video, the streamer’s own reimagining of I Know What You Did Last Summer might be right up your alley. Canceled after one season, the show never quite got the love it deserved. It tells an engrossing story about teens dealing with the fallout of one fateful night when they accidentally killed a classmate. This time, there’s a clever twist, featuring the victim’s twin sister.

American Horror Story (TV series)

  • Original release: 2011 – present
  • Episode runtime: 43 minutes
  • Genre: Horror, anthology
  • Director/Creator: Ryan Murphy
  • Main cast: Sarah Paulson, Lily Rabe, Evan Peters

This horror anthology series from Glee creator Ryan Murphy can be hit or miss, depending on the season you choose, but no matter which spooky story you land on, you’ll find tons of terrific performances and spine-tingling scares.

The Fly (Film)

  • Release year: 1986
  • Runtime: 95 minutes
  • Genre: Science fiction, horror
  • Director: David Cronenberg
  • Main cast: Jeff Goldblum, Geena Davis

Canadian horror master David Cronenberg completely reimagined horror classic The Fly in his 1986 remake. Jeff Goldblum stars as Seth Brundle, a scientist who builds a teleportation device, accidentally splicing his genetic code with that of a housefly. Now, he’s slowly transforming into a grotesque man/fly hybrid as his girlfriend watches in horror.

The Lighthouse (Film)

  • Release year: 2019
  • Runtime: 109 minutes
  • Genre: Horror, drama
  • Director: Robert Eggers
  • Main cast: Willem Dafoe, Robert Pattinson

The Lighthouse is perhaps not the best selection for what to watch on Amazon Prime Video if you want a linear horror narrative. If you want something a little weirder, this surreal tale of two lighthouse keepers descending into madness in New England in the 1890s is a real gem.

Mystery

Homecoming (TV series)

  • Original release: 2018 – 2020
  • Episode runtime: 30 minutes
  • Genre: Suspense
  • Director/Creator: Eli Horowitz, Micah Bloomberg
  • Main cast: Julia Roberts, Janelle Monáe, Stephan James

Based on the hit podcast from Gimlet Media, Homecoming follows a social worker previously employed by the Geist Group, a facility where veterans are treated and prepared to reintegrate into society following active duty. The problem is she can’t remember any of the details from her time there. As she tries to move on in her new life as a waitress, she comes to realize she’s involved in a disturbing conspiracy.

Bosch (TV series)

  • Original release: 2014 – 2021
  • Episode runtime: 46 minutes
  • Genre: Police drama
  • Director/Creator: Eric Overmyer
  • Main cast: Titus Welliver, Jamie Hector, Amy Aquino

One of Amazon Studios’ first successes with original programming, Bosch remains a benchmark of detective fiction in the streaming age. A former special forces officer now works as a homicide detective in Hollywood, where he solves grizzly cases in this adaptation of the books by Michael Connelly.

The Prestige (Film)

  • Release year: 2006
  • Runtime: 130 minutes
  • Genre: Science-fiction, mystery
  • Director: Christopher Nolan
  • Main cast: Hugh Jackman, Christian Bale, Michael Caine

One of Christopher Nolan’s best and most underrated films, The Prestige tells the story of two competing magicians. Former partners ripped apart by tragedy, the two remain locked in a lifelong feud, with one attempting desperately to discover the secret to the other’s success in developing a popular teleportation trick in Edwardian London.

Vivarium (Film)

  • Release year: 2020
  • Runtime: 98 minutes
  • Genre: Science-fiction, suspense
  • Director: Lorcan Finnegan
  • Main cast: Imogen Poots, Jesse Eisenberg, Danielle Ryan

This dark and bizarre satire sees a couple trapped, for years, in an artificial environment designed as the ideal suburban neighborhood. Disturbing, funny, and mysterious, Vivarium is a real treat.

Romance

Forever (TV series)

  • Original release: 2018
  • Episode runtime: 30 minutes
  • Genre: Romantic comedy
  • Director/Creator: Alan Yang, Matt Hubbard
  • Main cast: Maya Rudolph, Fred Armisen

If you’re considering what to watch on Amazon Prime Video, Forever is a fun and fresh take on love and marriage. A couple who have fallen into a predictable suburban routine decide to shake things up with an impromptu ski trip. The trip has a much more dramatic effect on their lives than they ever predicted and sets off an out-of-this-world chain of events.

Catastrophe (TV series)

  • Original release: 2015 – 2019
  • Episode runtime: 24 minutes
  • Genre: Romantic comedy
  • Director/Creator: Sharon Horgan, Rob Delaney
  • Main cast: Sharon Horgan, Rob Delaney

This British sitcom originally aired on Channel 4, but it’s branded as an Amazon original in the US. It tells the unconventional story of a couple brought together by an accidental pregnancy. After an intercontinental fling, an American man and an Irish woman try to make their relationship work amid the ups and downs of new parenthood.

Runaway Bride (Film)

  • Release year: 1999
  • Runtime: 116 minutes
  • Genre: Romantic comedy
  • Director: Garry Marshall
  • Main cast: Julia Roberts, Richard Gere, Joan Cusack

Julia Roberts and Richard Gere reunite nearly a decade after their genre-defining Pretty Woman in Runaway Bride. A small-town woman draws the attention of a big-city journalist after bolting from her own weddings three times. As he travels to report on her fourth would-be marriage, Ike Graham becomes convinced that Maggie Carpenter will run again. But he’s also starting to fall for her.

The Big Sick (Film)

  • Release year: 2017
  • Runtime: 119 minutes
  • Genre: Comedy, drama
  • Director: Michael Showalter
  • Main cast: Kumail Nanjiani, Zoe Kazan, Holly Hunter

Funnyman Kumail Nanjiani wrote The Big Sick with his wife Emily V. Gordon, and the true story inspired by their lives is a great choice for anyone looking for what to watch on Amazon Prime Video. Pakistani-American comedian Kumail starts dating a white American woman after they meet at one of his shows. While the cultural divide between their families seems insurmountable, he grows close to her parents when she falls severely ill and is in a coma.

Thriller

The Americans (TV series)

  • Original release: 2013 – 2018
  • Episode runtime: 45 minutes
  • Genre: Suspense, spy
  • Director/Creator: Joe Weisberg
  • Main cast: Keri Russell, Matthew Rhys, Maximiliano Hernández

Seeing the Cold War from the Russian perspective is nothing new, but seeing it from the perspective of Russian spies living as Americans, going as far as raising kids in America who are unaware of their parents’ true allegiances? Well, that’s where The Americans really stands out. This FX series was one of the best shows of the 21st century, and you can watch it all on Amazon Prime Video. 

Tell Me Your Secrets (TV series)

  • Original release: 2021
  • Episode runtime: 46 minutes
  • Genre: Thriller
  • Director/Creator: Harriet Warner
  • Main cast: Lily Rabe, Amy Brenneman, Hamish Linklater

It’s impossible to trust anyone in this sharp thriller. Three people with dark pasts wind up in each other’s orbits, heading steadily towards a fateful confrontation. A woman looking for her missing daughter, another woman recently released from prison for a heinous crime, and a former predator seeking redemption find themselves wrapped up in a deadly game of cat and mouse.

You Were Never Really Here (Film)

  • Release year: 2018
  • Runtime: 89 minutes
  • Genre: Suspense
  • Director: Lynne Ramsay
  • Main cast: Joaquin Phoenix, Ekaterina Samsonov

Lynne Ramsay’s follow-up to her brilliant 2011 feature We Need to Talk About Kevin is one of the best films on Amazon Prime. A brutal mob enforcer sets out to rescue a missing girl in this stripped-down, gritty crime thriller starring Joaquin Phoenix in one of his best roles.

I’m Your Woman (Film)

  • Release year: 2020
  • Runtime: 121 minutes
  • Genre: Crime
  • Director: Julia Hart
  • Main cast: Rachel Brosnahan, Marsha Stephanie Blake, Arinzé Kene

Julia Hart’s I’m Your Woman is a very easy choice among titles to watch on Amazon Prime Video. A woman goes on the run with her baby when her husband betrays the wrong people, who now want payback. Learning more about her husband as she goes, she finds herself in a criminal underworld she doesn’t know in this tense, smart thriller.

Western

Reacher (TV series)

  • Original release: 2022 – present
  • Episode runtime: 50 minutes
  • Genre: Detective fiction
  • Director/Creator: Nick Santora
  • Main cast: Alan Ritchson, Malcolm Goodwin, Willa Fitzgerald

We’re cheating a little by including Reacher here. It’s set in the modern-day without any actual cowboys, but there’s still something distinctly western about it. A traveling stranger wanders into town and has to help the locals with troublesome tough guys? Yeah, that could be a Clint Eastwood or John Wayne classic. Based on Lee Child’s Jack Reacher novel series, Reacher is a solid take on the story of an ex-military police officer with a knack for finding trouble, and all the skill it takes to end it.

Mr. Robot (TV series)

  • Original release: 2015 – 2019
  • Episode runtime: 47 minutes
  • Genre: Suspense
  • Director/Creator: Sam Esmail
  • Main cast: Rami Malek, Christian Slater, Portia Doubleday

Okay, maybe we’re cheating a lot. Amazon doesn’t have a ton of great straight-up western TV. But it does have great TV that plays on western themes. And is cyberspace not the new wild west? A cyber security expert turned hacker is recruited by the leader of a hacking ring to take down the company he works for in this techno-thriller starring Academy Award-winner Rami Malek.

A Fistful of Dollars (Film)

  • Release year: 1964
  • Runtime: 100 minutes
  • Genre: Spaghetti western
  • Director: Sergio Leone
  • Main cast: Clint Eastwood, Marianne Koch, John Wells

Fans of classic westerns wondering what to watch on Amazon Prime Video should take a look at one of the finest examples of the genre. A man with no name makes his way to a small border town where he’s enlisted to help in a years-long feud between two rival families. Soon, he’s playing both sides against each other. And he’s cashing in everywhere in this spaghetti western masterpiece, a precursor to The Good, the Bad and the Ugly.

Lawless (Film)

  • Release year: 2012
  • Runtime: 115 minutes
  • Genre: Crime
  • Director: John Hillcoat
  • Main cast: Shia LeBeouf, Tom Hardy, Jessica Chastain

The Bondurants are a family of bootleggers during the Great Depression and Prohibition era. For years, they’ve enjoyed a truce with local law enforcement, bribing their way into a comfortable existence as outlaws. That all changes when a big city lawman comes to town looking to bring the Bondurants to justice.

Family and kids

Teen Wolf (TV series)

  • Original release: 2011 – 2017
  • Episode runtime: 41 minutes
  • Genre: Horror, young adult
  • Director/Creator: Jeff Davis
  • Main cast: Tyler Posey, Crystal Reed, Dylan O’Brien

For kids on the older side, this teen drama is a (very loose) adaptation of the 1985 film. It was a big hit at MTV, and for good reason. A teen is bitten and turns into a werewolf, and suddenly, he’s learning about a whole new world of monsters living among us. All of this is happening as he navigates the usual drama of high school, including young love, friendships, and family.

Peppa Pig (TV series)

  • Original release: 2011 – 2020
  • Episode runtime: 25 minutes
  • Genre: Kids, animated
  • Director/Creator: Mark Baker, Neville Astley
  • Main cast: John Sparkes, Morwenna Banks, Richard Ridings

If you’ve had kids in your life in the last decade, you’re probably familiar with Peppa Pig. The series follows Peppa and her family of pigs, as well as the other animal families in her community. Storylines emphasize real emotions and situations that help kids process their own realities while being charming and entertaining too. 

Hotel Transylvania: Transformania (Film)

  • Release year: 2022
  • Runtime: 87 minutes
  • Genre: Fantasy, animated
  • Director: Derek Drymon, Jennifer Kluska
  • Main cast: Andy Samberg, Selena Gomez, Kathryn Hahn

The most recent Hotel Transylvania film is an Amazon Prime Video exclusive. It features familiar characters like Drac and his fellow monsters turning into humans and Johnny turning into a monster when one of Van Helsing’s inventions goes haywire. Now, they have to set things right so they’re not stuck like this forever.

Puss in Boots (Film)

  • Release year: 2012
  • Runtime: 90 minutes
  • Genre: Adventure, fantasy, animated
  • Director: Chris Miller
  • Main cast: Antonio Banderas, Salma Hayek, Zach Galifianakis

This Shrek spinoff is a top choice for kids and families wondering what to watch on Amazon Prime Video. Puss and his old friend Humpty Dumpty team up with notorious cat burglar Kitty Softpaws to steal a goose that lays golden eggs in this fun send-up of familiar fairytales.

Looking for more family content?


Hopefully, you’ll find something among these 40 titles to keep you occupied and getting the most out of your streaming subscription.

There’s plenty to watch on Amazon Prime Video, and once you’ve made your way through some of these titles, you shouldn’t have any trouble finding more to watch.

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Amazon Prime Video
Amazon Prime Video offers access to thousands of movies and TV shows to stream. That includes great original shows and movies like The Boys and The Tomorrow War. You can also sign up for other premium services within Amazon Prime Video.