Noh Juhan | Netflix

(Photo by Kirsty Griffin/Netflix)

Netflix’s Top 20 Shows and Movies of 2021

As of December 31, 2021

What’s trending on Netflix? How about for all of 2021?

The most popular shows and movies on Netflix based on subscriber viewing habits are found on the service’s navigation menu, but that’s only part of the story. Fans also spend time reading up on their favorite Netflix series and movies and their critical standing here at Rotten Tomatoes. We’ve made a list of the top 20 movies and shows on Netflix U.S. that our visitors read about here during 2021. The list

Also Recommended:

The Best Netflix Shows and Series To Watch
The Best Netflix Movies To Watch Right Now

Korean drama Squid Game led the list of the most popular Netflix titles on Rotten Tomatoes in 2021, beating out the streaming giant’s top film titles, like star-driven Red Notice, which saw Dwayne Johnson, Gal Gadot, and Ryan Reynolds teaming up for heist story.

Recent 2021 releases like season 2 of fantasy series The Witcher, political satire Don’t Look Up with Leonardo DiCaprio and Jennifer Lawrence, and Benedict Cumberbatch–starring drama The Power of the Dog had a lot of ground to cover to catch up with the year’s earlier releases and make it into the top 10. Their ascent has been impressive to watch, and we’ve updated the list ranking as of December 31 to account for their continued growth at the end of 2021. Don’t Look Up finished in the No. 2 spot (previously No. 4), The Witcher at No. 4 (previously 5), and Power of the Dog at No. 7 (previously 9).

While traffic to most TV titles’ main pages propelled the titles onto the list, some titles like The Sinner — the four-season USA Network series has three seasons streaming on Netflix — and two-season French drama Lupin made it onto the list with traffic to their first season pages, again proving that Netflix is a place to discover titles that have been around for a while.

Looking for more great TV and streaming recommendations? Order our book, The Ultimate Binge Guide, which is now on sale.

Is your favorite Netflix show or series on the Netflix Top 20 list? Let us know in the comments what you watched on Netflix in 2021.


The Dig (2021)

Adjusted Score: 95049%
Critics Consensus: Featuring beautifully matched performances from Ralph Fiennes and Carey Mulligan set against gorgeously filmed English countryside, The Dig yields period drama treasures.
Synopsis: An excavator and his team discover a wooden ship from the Dark Ages while digging up a burial ground on... [More]
Directed By: Simon Stone


The White Tiger (2021)

Adjusted Score: 100114%
Critics Consensus: Well-acted and beautifully made, The White Tiger distills the strengths of its source material into a grimly compelling drama.
Synopsis: Balram Halwai (Adarsh Gourav) narrates his epic and darkly humorous rise from poor villager to successful entrepreneur in modern India.... [More]
Directed By: Ramin Bahrani

Adjusted Score: 97266%
Critics Consensus: It isn't as bold and fearless as its characters, but The Harder They Fall fills its well-worn template with style, energy, and a fantastic cast.
Synopsis: When outlaw Nat Love (Jonathan Majors) discovers that his enemy Rufus Buck (Idris Elba) is being released from prison he... [More]
Directed By: Jeymes Samuel

Adjusted Score: 106676%
Critics Consensus: Eye-catching and energetic, The Mitchells vs. the Machines delivers a funny, feel-good story that the whole family can enjoy.
Synopsis: Young Katie Mitchell embarks on a road trip with her proud parents, younger brother and beloved dog to start her... [More]
Directed By: Mike Rianda

Lupin: Part 1 (2021)

Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: Omar Sy effortlessly hits every mark in Lupin, an engrossing espionage thriller that lives up to its source material and then some.

Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: Smartly unpredictable and led by powerful performances from a talented cast, the darkly compelling The Sinner sinks its hooks in fast and doesn't let go.
Directed By: Antonio Campos

Cowboy Bebop (2021)

Synopsis: A ragtag crew of bounty hunters chases down the galaxy's most dangerous criminals; they'll save the world for the right... [More]

Money Heist (2017)

Synopsis: A criminal mastermind who goes by "The Professor" has a plan to pull off the biggest heist in recorded history... [More]


The Guilty (2021)

Adjusted Score: 83690%
Critics Consensus: The Guilty is another Americanized remake overshadowed by the original, but its premise is still sturdy enough to support a tense, well-acted thriller.
Synopsis: The film takes place over the course of a single morning in a 911 dispatch call center. Call operator Joe... [More]
Directed By: Antoine Fuqua

Adjusted Score: 36205%
Critics Consensus: A milquetoast and muddled thriller that drowns in its frenzied homages, The Woman in the Window will have audiences closing their curtains.
Synopsis: Anna Fox (Amy Adams) is an agoraphobic child psychologist who finds herself keeping tabs on the picture perfect family across... [More]
Directed By: Joe Wright

You (2018)

Synopsis: What would you do for love? For a brilliant male bookstore manager who crosses paths with an aspiring female writer,... [More]

Midnight Mass (2021)

Synopsis: The arrival of a charismatic priest brings miracles, mysteries and renewed religious fervor to a dying town.... [More]
Directed By: Mike Flanagan


I Care a Lot (2020)

Adjusted Score: 90194%
Critics Consensus: A searing swipe at late-stage capitalism, I Care A Lot is an exhilarating pitch black comedy with a wicked performance from Rosamund Pike.
Synopsis: Poised with sharklike self-assurance, Marla Grayson (Academy Award nominee Rosamund Pike) is a professional, court-appointed guardian for dozens of elderly... [More]
Directed By: J Blakeson

Adjusted Score: 111850%
Critics Consensus: Brought to life by a stellar ensemble led by Benedict Cumberbatch, The Power of the Dog reaffirms writer-director Jane Campion as one of her generation's finest filmmakers.
Synopsis: Severe, pale-eyed, handsome, Phil Burbank is brutally beguiling. All of Phil's romance, power and fragility is trapped in the past... [More]
Directed By: Jane Campion


Red Notice (2021)

Adjusted Score: 44989%
Critics Consensus: Red Notice's big budget and A-list cast add up to a slickly competent action comedy whose gaudy ingredients only make the middling results more disappointing.
Synopsis: In the world of international crime, an Interpol agent attempts to hunt down and capture the world's most wanted art... [More]


Army Of The Dead (2021)

Adjusted Score: 82465%
Critics Consensus: An ambitious, over-the-top zombie heist mashup, Army of the Dead brings Zack Snyder back to his genre roots with a suitably gory splash.
Synopsis: From filmmaker Zack Snyder (300, Zack Snyder's Justice League), ARMY OF THE DEAD takes place following a zombie outbreak that... [More]
Directed By: Zack Snyder

The Witcher (2019)

Synopsis: The witcher Geralt, a mutated monster hunter, struggles to find his place in a world in which people often prove... [More]

Synopsis: The origins of two iconic League champions, set in the utopian Piltover and the oppressed underground of Zaun.... [More]


Don't Look Up (2021)

Adjusted Score: 70876%
Critics Consensus: Don't Look Up aims too high for its scattershot barbs to consistently land, but Adam McKay's star-studded satire hits its target of collective denial square on.
Synopsis: Kate Dibiasky (Jennifer Lawrence), an astronomy grad student, and her professor Dr. Randall Mindy (Leonardo DiCaprio) make an astounding discovery... [More]
Directed By: Adam McKay

Squid Game (2021)

Synopsis: Hundreds of cash-strapped contestants accept an invitation to compete in children's games for a tempting prize, but the stakes are... [More]
Directed By: Hwang Dong-hyuk

On an Apple device? Follow Rotten Tomatoes on Apple News.

Tag Cloud

hispanic AMC Plus CW Seed 20th Century Fox Winners kids international Syfy anthology Television Critics Association Tarantino biography rt labs critics edition war OneApp scorecard Certified Fresh Alien ID Exclusive Video black comedy Baby Yoda WGN crime drama Drama Cannes richard e. Grant DGA NYCC NBC 4/20 kaiju Lifetime comedies PBS japan finale screenings heist movie Elton John know your critic 2019 Image Comics adenture The Walking Dead RT21 TCA Awards romance anime DC Comics Travel Channel ratings FOX Rocketman television harry potter spider-verse doctor who saw Watching Series dreamworks Mary Poppins Returns Awards leaderboard IMDb TV wonder woman adventure LGBTQ Year in Review TBS Sundance TV Trailer trophy Hollywood Foreign Press Association debate renewed TV shows archives Podcast Trophy Talk FX christmas movies remakes 78th Annual Golden Globe Awards Disney animated Extras cancelled TV series spider-man Prime Video APB Lionsgate crime jamie lee curtis golden globes 007 Holidays Countdown Spike nbcuniversal Women's History Month Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt HBO a nightmare on elm street TruTV thriller new zealand golden globe awards superman child's play singing competition sports BBC America TLC Captain marvel Premiere Dates Amazon Prime Video Emmy Nominations hist films blockbuster witnail aapi Spring TV tv talk LGBT Britbox art house olympics ViacomCBS kong Film Festival spy thriller FX on Hulu TCA Winter 2020 YA Turner cancelled television GLAAD Spectrum Originals Legendary indie Rom-Com Mindy Kaling Mystery 90s Netflix nfl Biopics IFC Films disaster composers TCA stand-up comedy Instagram Live Apple TV+ theme song sopranos Apple TV Plus A&E 2017 Pop Photos critics talk show Brie Larson Calendar 2020 universal monsters Fall TV boxing The Walt Disney Company science fiction french cats Food Network young adult PaleyFest Action book adaptation Hear Us Out unscripted Comic Book YouTube Red biopic Summer Emmys NBA high school HBO Go Crackle First Reviews cinemax comic book movie breaking bad GoT Best Actor Best and Worst Television Academy Paramount Hallmark spanish Tags: Comedy Apple scary Logo Vudu Best Actress Mudbound Sneak Peek documentary series streaming movies game of thrones romantic comedy El Rey mutant free movies police drama Pirates Discovery Channel technology vampires Creative Arts Emmys true crime concert video on demand Epix cancelled TV shows king kong Christmas venice Comic-Con@Home 2021 VOD Wes Anderson Walt Disney Pictures The Arrangement new star wars movies sequel Warner Bros. TV movies 79th Golden Globes Awards Esquire Dark Horse Comics Crunchyroll spanish language rom-coms TV 72 Emmy Awards Amazon Disney+ Disney Plus latino versus Infographic dogs Disney Channel canceled TV shows Fox Searchlight japanese telelvision cops children's TV slasher 93rd Oscars Broadway Turner Classic Movies scene in color Lucasfilm all-time period drama Star Wars indiana jones Disney Plus laika Comedy Central mockumentary slashers X-Men monster movies Pop TV Funimation Martial Arts Superheroes BBC Freeform sag awards cancelled Shudder 2021 Pixar MGM south america CBS All Access docudrama justice league Black Mirror marvel cinematic universe historical drama genre cults 71st Emmy Awards Shondaland chucky zombie Sci-Fi king arthur zombies Showtime award winner rt labs supernatural halloween news nature Grammys foreign live event cartoon mcc Fargo Music BBC One revenge National Geographic The Purge MTV Nickelodeon Comics on TV what to watch Cosplay razzies Election best BAFTA First Look satire directors women Tumblr Winter TV hispanic heritage month reviews South by Southwest Film Festival facebook Superheroe suspense Western Black History Month serial killer book USA Network WarnerMedia Cartoon Network political drama Character Guide italian scary movies psycho Ghostbusters Musicals travel dc YouTube streaming VH1 ABC Signature sequels HBO Max ABC TV One miniseries natural history Opinion 73rd Emmy Awards die hard 99% Paramount Plus live action Hallmark Christmas movies zero dark thirty Reality worst hidden camera Sundance Now based on movie Starz Fantasy Country The Academy BET Pacific Islander festival Musical fresh Valentine's Day Tubi sitcom CBS Nominations Best Director fast and furious Comedy feel good 45 DC Universe rotten Tokyo Olympics Chilling Adventures of Sabrina reboot batman Thanksgiving blaxploitation marvel comics 94th Oscars space IFC australia worst movies TV renewals Marvel critic resources Horror CMT crossover social media Arrowverse dragons SXSW prank Netflix Christmas movies Fox News Columbia Pictures Ovation dexter festivals Amazon Studios psychological thriller Sony Pictures Disney streaming service binge royal family criterion Acorn TV Adult Swim gangster E! superhero GIFs 24 frames black aliens jurassic park legend SDCC video cooking ABC Family Holiday Paramount Network rt archives casting Writers Guild of America Rock name the review screen actors guild Animation Polls and Games YouTube Premium popular Pet Sematary action-comedy HFPA mob politics movies Reality Competition The CW Tomatazos Endgame American Society of Cinematographers transformers Sundance Oscar Film comics Universal Toys TCA 2017 Video Games medical drama RT History Chernobyl ITV 21st Century Fox Hulu asian-american Star Trek Awards Tour posters dramedy joker robots dark godzilla Masterpiece 2015 ESPN werewolf cars Kids & Family TV Land halloween tv streamig deadpool 2018 comic books franchise Stephen King boxoffice AMC Nat Geo mission: impossible toy story diversity comic FXX Universal Pictures teaser hollywood discovery History MSNBC adaptation Marvel Television quibi classics The Witch A24 TIFF Oscars E3 SundanceTV comic book movies Bravo movie Interview documentaries SXSW 2022 Marvel Studios toronto spain new york Best Picture Set visit twilight USA Ellie Kemper Red Carpet crime thriller Pride Month Lifetime Christmas movies stoner parents pirates of the caribbean 2016 Super Bowl football stop motion 1990s San Diego Comic-Con Schedule rotten movies we love VICE vs. basketball comiccon target PlayStation Academy Awards elevated horror strong female leads trailers Rocky game show BET Awards OWN obi wan Quiz docuseries Peacock green book independent Trivia blockbusters DC streaming service Classic Film Binge Guide Marathons Song of Ice and Fire Heroines TNT Family canceled See It Skip It Anna Paquin DirecTV CNN Mary poppins MCU obituary Teen President spinoff james bond emmy awards New York Comic Con dceu lord of the rings Box Office Neflix Avengers Amazon Prime Mary Tyler Moore TCM ghosts