What is Christmas, besides a lot of family and friends gatherings, company lunches, singing like (and dressing like) Mariah Carey, friends and invisible enemies, fights to the death to get that damn video game for your nephew? Christmas is, from the most hedonistic of senses, a wasteland of dead hours between events to be able to dedicate yourself to what you really want: throw yourself on the sofa and watch a good Christmas movie. Our gift to you is that we are going to curate the best movies on Netflix for you to binge during the holidays according to your mood. Here you will find a few Christmas movies and many others far removed from this time of year, but all of them especially suitable for an occasion that will be very familiar to you in the coming days.
The best Netflix movies to watch at Christmas
For when you feel trapped between so many family commitments: Let me out
In 2017, Jordan Peele surprised the film industry with this Let me out , a debut film carried out with a budget of just seven million dollars that raised much more than that inside and outside the United States. Today, Peele is a respected author, the heir to the Twilight Zone brand , and one of the key references in contemporary horror. And all because of this film, which takes as its starting point the nerves of a young African-American before his first visit to the wealthy family of his white girlfriend. Upon reaching the rural neighborhood of his in-laws, the protagonist discovers that it is not so easy to get out of there. Removing the science fiction element, it would not be unusual for something similar to happen to you this holiday season in the midst of so much family commitment.
To lower the volume of parties: A quiet place
Christmas is a magical holiday, full of illusion, joviality and reunions, but it can also get very noisy. If when the time comes you need to make up for the screamer by all means, like someone lowering a drink after a family dinner, you’ll find few better options to do it than this fantasy horror story directed and co-starring John Krasinski, from The Office . . The protagonists are a family forced to live in silence on an Earth invaded by deadly blind creatures that hunt by hearing. His quietest moments give true peace, although things don’t take long to turn ugly.
To strengthen brotherly ties: My neighbor Totoro
If the films of the famous Studio Ghibli are characterized by something, it is for having more layers than an onion. Specifically, in those signed by director Hayao Miyazaki —such as Spirited Away , Princess Mononoke or this other one that we recommend— debates such as the climate crisis, the relationship of societies with nature, tensions between the countryside and the city, children’s inexhaustible ability to imagine… But this My Neighbor Totoro also has one of the most endearing and subtly narrated fraternal relationships in the entire filmography of the house. Although it takes place during a summer vacation in a remote Japanese town, the love that the main little sisters profess is pure Christmas spirit.
To reconsider the star dish of Christmas Eve dinner: Okja
Everyone knows Bong Joon-ho. Since the South Korean triumphed at the 2020 Oscars with Parasites , his sinister fable against capitalism and his domination spaces, his filmography has become one of the most coveted by platforms. At the very least, Netflix has -for having produced the film- Okja , an animalistic tale full of fantasy and with as much ability to mix film genres as the rest of the filmmaker’s work. It is very likely that, after meeting the adorable Okja, a genetically modified super-sow coveted by a megacorporation, you will consider eating plant-based this holiday season.
For when cava falls short: El camino, a Breaking Bad movie
We had to wait more than six years since Breaking Bad aired the last episode of its fifth season until, with the cold of the last months of 2019, we were able to meet again with Jesse Pinkman and his bitterness. They say that from the colored frizzante to the blue merchandise that Heisenberg cooked there is a step, but, in any case, in this film there is not as much drug as it might seem: its central theme is the struggle of the character of Aaron Paul to find a project of future after what happened with Walter White. Well, and a little drug yes there is.
To feel Santa Claus more Spanish: Klaus
Recommending a movie about the figure of Santa Claus to spend Christmas seems obvious, but perhaps your state of mind this holiday season is just that: a mix between affection and K-pop fanaticism for the person in charge of distributing gifts in the parties. The road to Santa Claus movies is dark and full of horrors, so trust us when we tell you that this animation prodigy from Spanish genius Sergio Pablos (and Oscar nominee, no less) is one of the best options of the good ones.
To spend a movie Christmas: Mank
David Fincher is one of the most renowned filmmakers today. In almost thirty years of career, he has signed jewels like Se7en , Fight Club , The Social Network , Zodiac … For his latest film (not his last project, because he has also tinkered with animation in Love, Death + Robots ), the director used a script written by his own father to tell a most cinephile story: the writing of the screenplay for Citizen Kane . And, more specifically, the story of all the headaches that caused a Herman J. Mankiewicz played by Gary Oldman.
To live a family reunion more exciting than yours: Give 5 Bloods (Brothers in arms)
If reuniting with brothers-in-law, cousins, in-laws and other blood of your blood is not exciting enough for you, you can take it out with this other family reunion directed by Spike Lee. The protagonists are not biological family, but they share a bond that could be even more robust: they were brothers in arms in the Vietnam War and lived through a tragic experience that marked them forever. Decades later, they return to the Asian country to honor the memory of that odyssey together and, incidentally, unearth a treasure they left hidden. It was one of Chadwick Boseman’s last roles.
To give a couple of turns to religion: The two popes
Living Christmas from the strictly personal is something very legitimate, but its link with religion is undeniable and, perhaps, some reader will want to take the opportunity to review their relationship with faith. A good excuse to give the matter some thought is this film by Fernando Meirelles which, almost in the key of a mockumentary, fully immerses the viewer in the intimate conversations that Pope Benedict and the then Cardinal Bergoglio had in 2012, at a historic moment. key to the Catholic Church. Anthony Hopkins and Jonathan Pryce give life to versions of the religious who always find the perfect word. At Esquire we define her as The New Pope, but seriously
To learn to value the Christmas Eve banquet: The hole
If Ebenezer Scrooge’s clinging man learned his valuable lesson one Christmas morning, you can prepare yourself with a little more time and learn, with this jewel of Spanish cinema, that behind each table full of delicacies there is a good reflection to be made. Directed by Galder Gaztelu-Urrutia, El hoyo is a twisted social metaphor on the verge of horror cinema that became a sensation in Netflix catalogs in other latitudes during the COVID-19 lockdown.
To celebrate the holidays with old friends: The Irishman
If you can put up with five and a half hours of small talk, shrimp and hidden coffee at each meal this holiday season, you can put up with three and a half of the best Martin Scorsese. Getting together with all these old gangster warfare buddies is pure Christmas spirit: De Niro, Pacino, Pesci, Cannavale, Keitel… They’re all, and all absolutely gorgeous. In addition, that Netflix injected money into a lost fund as it did with this film is also a Christmas miracle that we will surely not see again for many years.
So that your political conscience does not take a vacation: The trial of the Chicago 7
It is one thing to abandon ourselves to the consumerist frenzy in which the phantasmagoria of the capital that is Christmas plunges us every year. Voucher. We all do that, because it’s so much fun and because it drives us crazy to give and receive gifts. But another very different thing is to turn off political consciousness for fifteen days. If you want to keep the flame of resistance alive despite being inflated with sugared almonds and sugared sugar on the sofa at home, nothing better than this epic based on true events written and directed by the incomparable Aaron Sorkin.
To make the holidays even more depressed: The End of Evangelion
If you’re a true grinch and you just want to lock yourself in your room until people come to their senses, the municipalities stop burning money in insane lighting and the bags in large stores recover their sense of aesthetics, this film is the ideal option. to sink even more. The plot of Neon Genesis Evangelion , the anime series on which it is based, was so convoluted in its original broadcast that its creator, the Japanese Hideaki Anno, was forced to rewrite (and explain, let’s face it) its hermetic ending in this film that mixes giant robot battles with supine depression. Good luck.
To give the tale of the Magi a spin: Tokyo Godfathers
If Christmas fits one more parable, it has to be this. Tokyo Godfathers , one of the best films by the anime genius Satoshi Kon (copied over and over again by Nolan, Aronofsky…) , tells in a tragicomic key how three homeless people —an alcoholic man, a trans woman and a teenager who ran away from home—find an abandoned baby while rummaging through the garbage on Christmas Eve and decide to go looking for its parents. In addition to exposing the facade of rectitude and morality that Japanese society projects to the world, the film is a contemporary and animated version of Three Godfathers , John Ford’s 1948 Christmas western, which was itself a revision of the story of the Magi in the context of the Wild West.
To strengthen your sentimental relationship (or rethink it): Story of a marriage
Think twice before choosing this as the movie to watch as a family on Christmas afternoon. Noah Baumbach’s recreation of the divorce of a couple from the artist world and the subsequent collapse of their life together is a more than solvent film and is delicately interpreted by Adam Driver and Scarlett Johansson, but it can also be opening Pandora’s box of awkward conversations. Most likely, you are not doing everything right in your relationship —no one can, after all—, and this movie can be both an opportunity to improve and that turning point that makes the couple begin to detect all your red flags .
To pretend to be a movie buff at dinner: Rome
There will be something to talk about on Christmas Eve, in front of the turkey, the roast, the cannelloni or whatever is tasted on these dates indicated in your place of residence. And someone, by natural law, has to be the pedant at the table. If you don’t mind being you (and are even a bit attracted to the idea), you can prepare some ammunition by watching this autobiographical work by filmmaker Alfonso Cuaron. We are more of the movie that the Mexican signed for the Harry Potter saga , but it is not difficult for us to admit that giving the sheet on that one does not see so much.
To deal with that brother-in-law you can’t even see: The power of the dog
Christmas is a time of peace. It is the time of the year to reunite with those close to you, forget the differences and enjoy the company. But if you can’t even hold back the migraines caused by certain questions and interventions from a specific family member during banquets, you can always put this film on your table. At best, the troubled relationship between an evil cattle rancher played by Benedict Cumberbatch and his brother’s girlfriend, played by the sublime Kirsten Dunst, will reconcile you. At worst, it will be clear to that obnoxious relative how far you’d go to get rid of him if this were the Wild West.
To reconnect with the magic of childhood: Apollo 10½: A Space Childhood
We can’t think of a better way to connect with your child self during these holidays than this coming-of-age adventure told as only Richard Linklater could tell it. Using the rotoscoping animation technique, the renowned filmmaker brings to the screen his own memories of a childhood marked, like that of so many American children in the 1960s, by the epic Apollo 11 mission and the landing of man on the moon. . Of course, they are the memories of a child: everything the young protagonist tells is blurred, exaggerated and questionable, but also magical.
To sigh for the return of summer: The sea monster
Netflix never stops bringing joy to animation lovers. And even more so in a time like this, when —let’s face it— more than one of us sighs for the return of summer, with its heat, its little beach and its long hours of sunshine. This story about the alliance between a brave girl and a monster hunter, visually powerful and highly entertaining, smells like backing seawater. The olfactory sensors also need a break from so much fireplace and so much hot chocolate from time to time.
To find out what’s inside the gifts: Enola Holmes
We all know that the most fun part of Christmas is trying to guess what’s inside the presents. Since one begins to find, from the end of November, strange packages wrapped and hidden in the most unexpected corners of the house, the detective that we all have inside wakes up. If you don’t want to abandon yourself to mere trial and error, you can borrow some of her deduction techniques from this Enola Holmes, little sister of the famous English investigator, whom Millie Bobby Brown has already brought to life in two different films.
To celebrate that the world is ending the year: Don’t look up
Let’s go with the definitive gift that Netflix has saved for you to finish off 2021. We are talking about an Oscar couple, hitherto unpublished on television: Leonardo DiCaprio and Jennifer Lawrence have succumbed to the call of streaming with this pre-apocalyptic comedy about two mediocre astronomers who must undertake a huge media tour to warn humanity of the arrival of a comet that is going to destroy the Earth. It is directed by Adam McKay, the producer of the most-watched comedies of the last decades, and has as supporting roles with, take a breath, Meryl Streep, Cate Blanchett, Chris Evans, Timothee Chalamet, Matthew Perry, Ariana Grande… It will be released earlier in theaters, the December 10, and points out that it will be a Christmas ball that the whole world will see between polvoron and polvoron before the end comes. From 2021, it is understood.
To steal hours from a boring desktop: Red alert
Ryan Reynolds, Dwayne Johnson and Gal Gadot unite their cinematographic superpowers in a film that has an action director, Rawson Marshall Thurber (The Skyscraper),a billion-dollar budget and a clear objective: to break the viewing record. The film was originally from Universal and was destined for theaters, but the pandemic delayed filming and after the premiere forecast, Netflix chimed in in the middle of that process and finished shooting it. The plot? Pure action and a dose of jokes with the hallmarks of Ryan Reynolds in a story about an FBI agent (Johnson) who is forced to work with a thief (Reynolds) to catch another (Gadot). There is a lot of homage to Indiana Jones, something that always works as a Christmas adventure, with the most reinforced comic part: it is an entertainment bomb device without the magic of the reference, but perfect to cheer up some heavy digestion.
To turn off the carols for a while: Tick, tick… Boom!
We stay in musical mode and also under the baton of Lil Manuel Miranda, who has done a double on Netflix. We change the ro-po-pon-pon for the tick-tick in this film version of the autobiographical musical created by Jonathan Larson, the author of Rent , about the artistic and personal crisis he experienced before creating his first production, Superbia . It is not a perfect musical but, between the wonderful performance of Andrew Garfield and the beautiful message of improvement and commitment that the text transmits, it does ensure almost two hours of good vibrations and a handful of Glee -style high songs , which hits much for these dates. Ah, Vanessa Hudgens comes out, like in Requetecambio de princess, but without a crown.
To Resurrect Your Family Spirit: Little Women
Now, your mother prefers that you see The Sound of Music together again, but maybe this is the time to change. And what better than to do it by the hand of Greta Gerwig and her emotionally feminist and cinematically exquisite version of Louisa May Alcott’s classic. The turn is not pamphleteering or moralistic at all, but delves into that subtext present in the original work to achieve a modern and faithful vision at the same time. It’s romantic, yes, but above all it shows family love in a beautiful way. Saoirse Ronan shines with her own light in an excellent cast.
Not to lose faith: The hand of God
Infinite desire to see the new film by Paolo Sorrentino, the god of Italian cinema who ascended to heaven with La gran belleza and returned to earth in the form of Young Pope . He now travels to his native Naples to tell a story based on his own family drama, which we are not going to reveal lest the devil take us for spoiling. The hand to which the title refers is that of Maradona, but it is not a soccer plot but something like a surrender in images (and what images) before the power of Fate, with capital letters. Those who have already seen it say that it is Sorrentino’s simplest film, also the most emotional, honest and transcendental. It opens in theaters before Netflix, in case you want to enjoy it on the big screen.
To prepare ‘that’ family event: Daggers in the back
If you haven’t seen this deluxe cluedo, you’re already taking time. An update of the spirit of Diez negritos with half Hollywood (Daniel Craig, Chris Evans, Jamie Lee Curtis, Toni Collette…), although the one that shines the most is undoubtedly ‘our’ Ana de Armas. She is the one with whom you will identify if at these parties you have to act as host-cook-cleaner in your own or someone else’s house. We all know how knives fly, so it’s better to enjoy it on the sofa than to suffer it in your flesh.
To make plans if you win the lottery: If I were rich
If you really get the Fat, you have two options: send one of these months to your boss or see the comedy starring Alex Garcia. It is one more of all those Spanish productions with a title with a set phrase, a pretty starting point and a development that is bordering on disaster, a scheme that works perfectly in theaters and is even better for a silly pre- or post-Christmas night at home. The plot, how to pretend that you are not a millionaire, gives a mixture of laughter and anger that has its point.
To dose the heating: Subzero
Very appropriate title in the midst of a cold snap (and rising light) for a thriller once again starring Javier Gutierrez. Trigger the level of claustrophobia and tension, almost to the level of Buried,because a large part of the action takes place inside a police van that transports a group of very dangerous prisoners. Among which are some of the wildest young actors, like Patrick Criado and Alex Monner. On the way, in the middle of a lost road covered with snow and ice, an ‘accident’ occurs after which the driver of the van (Gutierrez) is trapped with the inmates… And what follows is a fight for survival and a game of deception with constant surprises for the viewer. Now for the heat rush: It was the most-watched movie in the world when it premiered on Netflix.
To see with children without tearing your eyes out: Alive
Latin Christmas party for the whole family. If you are looking for a movie to watch with children, this musical is perfect. It is a production of Lin-Manuel Miranda, the new god of Broadway, with a wonderful original soundtrack – Gloria Estefan included – and a very colorful adventure for children to enjoy. It tells the story of a musician who wants to win back the love of his life, an artist he performed with as a young man: to do so, he commissions his monkey, named Vivo, to send him a letter. And the little animal, which is great, starts that race together with an equally adorable girl. Good genuine vibes and songs that touch you the potato.
To Celebrate a Merry Kinki-Christmas: The Laws of the Border
Another reason to throw Siempre Asi ‘s carol album off the balcony and ask Alexa to play any great song from Derby Motoreta’s Burrito Kachimba, which makes the soundtrack. Daniel Monzon (Cell 112, El Nino) adapts the novel by Javier Cercas to mark a vibrant revision of the quinqui genre with this story of pure neighborhood thugs, with robberies and knives, but also with heart, in the Spain of the Transition. The leading trio Marcos Ruiz, Begona Vargas, Chechu Salgado, all youth and talent, is out there.
To take a nap Antena 3 level: The last love letter
“I write thinking of you and my heart is pounding…”. With this subtle verse, worthy of that ‘Christmas’ that you sent your ex in 1998, begins the typical film that we would discard without thinking for being the ultimate corny Christmas… But it is starring none other than Shailene Woodley (the from Big Little Lies)and Felicity Jones, so we’re forced to look at her with goofy eyes. But come on, that is what it seems: based on the typical romantic bestseller, it tells the story of a journalist who discovers a wonderful adultery in the 60s through a letter. The film narrates that forbidden high-society romance with fantastic photography, while in the present tense it recounts the journalist’s investigation to find out what has happened to the furtive lovers. To enjoy it while you taste the candied fruit that your guests have left on the roscon plates.
To think about it before calling the emergency room due to embarrassment: Guilty
If you’re looking for a movie that hooks you but isn’t a tremendous (roasted) chestnut, stop. There may be something here. It is a remake of a 2018 Danish film that is very faithful to the original version… except for the ending, but that is better for you to discover for yourself. With a script by Nic Pizzolatto (True Detective) and direction by Antoine Fuqua (The Equalizer),This is a claustrophobic and fast-paced thriller about an emergency service operator who tries to save a woman from a strange kidnapping from a distance. Obviously nothing is what it seems and the action hides a thousand traps for the viewer, but the cool thing about the film is that you are so captivated by the wonderful performance of Jake Gyllenhaal that you swallow them all without realizing it, like sugared almonds on a plate of nougat no matter how much you say you don’t like them.