In the mood for a mystery to solve? Seeking the buzz of learning about the dark secrets of the criminal underworld? We advise that you scratch your itch for crime stories from the safety and comfort of your home and watch a movie (or miniseries) on Netflix.
Since we started producing moving pictures, crime has inspired filmmakers to create gripping good crime movies and Netflix crime shows, which means there are many fantastic options to watch whenever you are in the mood.
For all the people who enjoy streaming true crime movies, instead of going to the theater to watch them, Netflix has a handful of great options currently available to stream on demand. The selection of crime films and series is varied on the premium streaming service. And some are based on actual events, others are masterful cinematic universes conjured by maestro filmmakers, and some are genre-bending tales of organized crimes, misdeeds, robbery, and murders.
If all of this sounds good to you, then check out our picks for the top crime movies on Netflix right now:
Top 20 Crime Movies on Netflix Right Now
- Wicked Shockingly Evil and Vile – 2019
- The Irishman – 2019
- El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie – 2019
- Wind River – 2017
- 21 Bridges – 2019
- The Guilty – 2018
- Unbelievable – 2019
- Whistleblower – 2010
- The Hateful Eight – 2015
- Red Notice – 2021
- Flint Town – 2018
- The Keepers – 2017
- Uncut Gems – 2019
- The Alienist – 2018
- I Don’t Feel at Home in This World Anymore – 2017
- A Cop Movie – 2021
- The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo – 2011
- Good Time – 2017
- Ocean’s Eleven – 2001
- Amanda Knox – 2011
1. Wicked Shockingly Evil and Vile – 2019
Starring: Zac Efron, Lily Collins, Kaya Scodelario, Haley Joel Osment, Jim Parsons, John Malkovich, James Hetfield
- Director: Joe Berlinger
- Writer: Michael Werwie
- Total Run Time: 1 hr 50 min
Watch Zac Efron as Ted Bundy, one of the most notorious real-life serial killers in the US. Efron’s gripping performance makes this movie a worthwhile watch. He is confident, charming, and charismatic, which are all the things that made Bundy a celebrity among a legion of female fans despite his heinous crimes.
You may even find yourself supporting Efron’s Bundy as you watch the film, although you already know that this character had brutally murdered dozens of women. However, at the conclusion of the movie, you will be reminded of the monster that Bundy was. Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil, and Vile are different from the many other films that have dealt with the subject of Bundy’s trials and life. The primary focus of this movie is to explore how despite his crimes, Bundy became much loved among his fans, which were mainly women.
Bundy was simply a wolf in sheep’s clothing.
2. The Irishman – 2019
- Starring: Robert De Niro, Al Pacino, and Joe Pesci
- Director: Martin Scorsese
- Writer: Steven Zaillian
- Total Run Time: 3 hr 30 min
Watching a 3.5-hour movie might seem like a mammoth task for some, but let us assure you that this Martin Scorsese masterpiece is a must-watch for crime movie lovers. The story of The Irishman can be defined only as a journey, which is equal parts entertaining and thrilling, as you learn about the life story of Sheeran, played by Robert De Niro, and his friends: Russell Bufalino, the monster played by Joe Pesci, and Jimmy Hoffa, Teamster leader played by Al Pacino.
The film takes you along on a mob story that the beginning and as things progress, a diegesis on life, friendship, and regrets. Unlike the glamorous depictions of mob life in crime blockbusters like Goodfellas and Casino, The Irishman sets a different tone by focusing on a complex character that views himself as good. Still, his vices include violence and selfishness, as he looks back upon his life, choices, and friendships that had grave consequences.
This is one of Scorsese’s best directorial works, which you must catch as long as it’s available on Netflix.
3. El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie – 2019
- Starring: Aaron Paul, Jesse Plemons, Scott Shepard, Robert Forster
- Writer and Director: Vince Gilligan
- Total Run Time: 2 hr 2 min
The Breaking Bad series is already a hit, much-loved TV show that concluded in its season five finale, “Felina,” with an ending that fans were ultimately happy with. Therefore, the continuation of the story didn’t make much sense at the time when El Camino was announced. However, writer and director Vince Gilligan, the creator of the original series, was able to tell a follow-up story about Jesse, played by Aaron Paul.
El Camino follows the tragic life of Jesse, an already beloved character. The movie provides no definitive conclusion, which was an exciting choice, yet it felt right. For the diehard fans of Breaking Bad, El Camino serves lots of satisfying problems solving while taking them on a more intimate journey.
Paul has done a fantastic job portraying the complexities of Jesse’s healing. El Camino is a must-watch for Robert Forster fans since it was the great actor’s final screen performance.
4. Wind River – 2017
- Starring: Jeremy Renner, Elizabeth Olsen, Julia Jones, Graham Greene, Kelsey Asbille
- Director and Writer: Taylor Sheridan
- Total Run Time: 1 hr 47 min
Wind River is an utterly compelling watch throughout. The movie is one of the most impactful crime thrillers with more than just sudden plot twists and shocking deaths that are typical of the genre. Instead, it sheds light on the very real violence that underprivileged communities face all over the world, including in developed countries. Still, it is so nuanced, which is extremely impressive.
The casting is outstanding. Jeremy Renner and Elizabeth Olsen have given one of their best performances. The riveting plot stays compelling from the beginning to the very end of the movie.
Wind River’s story focuses on the real-life issue of the missing and murdered of America’s Indigenous women. The main character: Cory Lambert, played by Jeremy Renner, is a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service agent who teams up with Jane Banner, played by Elizabeth Olsen, an FBI agent Jane Banner to investigate the death of a young indigenous woman on an Indian Reservation in Wyoming.
This isn’t the perfect crime thriller by any means, but it doesn’t fail to leave a lasting impression thanks to Taylor Sheridan’s brilliant writing and directing, as well as the entire cast’s brilliant acting.
5. 21 Bridges – 2019
- Starring: Chadwick Boseman, Sienna Miller, J.K. Simmons
- Director: Brian Kirk
- Writer: Adam Mervis, Matthew Michael Carnahan
- Run Time: 1 hr 39 min
In 21 Bridges, the late Chadwick Boseman plays Andre Davis, an embattled NYPD detective who becomes involved in a conspiracy. According to Critics, the plot of this action-thriller isn’t unique; however, the fans disagree and recommend 21 Bridges for its gripping story and unexpected twists.
The story, which is told primarily through the eyes of the central character, played by Boseman, hints at the underlying politics that plague American law enforcement. The ensemble cast is filled with well-known faces who all give excellent performances. However, Boseman is the show’s star.
While the role of Andre Davis – a morally grounded detective – belief system is shaken is not novel, Boseman gives his character depth and nuance, making every scene he’s in compelling to watch.
6. The Guilty – 2018
- Starring: Jake Gyllenhaal, Riley Keough (voice), Peter Sarsgaard (voice)
- Director: Antoine Fuqua
- Writer: Nic Pizzolatto
- Run Time: 1 hr 30 min
We strongly advise taking a few deep breaths before watching this movie. This 2018 thriller is so tightly wound that you’ll need extra oxygen to get through it without passing out. Gustav Möller, a Swedish-Danish filmmaker, uses very few resources in his directorial debut to create an enthralling atmosphere. While The Guilty was reportedly made with a $100 million budget, all it brings to the table is one man in a dark room.
It engages our imagination rather than overpowering it with special effects. Similarly, the plot is brief: a police officer is temporarily assigned to emergency dispatch when he receives a call that turns an otherwise routine shift into a nightmare. This is all we’re going to tell you until you’ve finished your breathing exercises.
The film’s minimalist approach is held together by Jakob Cedergre’s excellent acting, a screenplay that matches, and incredible sound design. A true adrenaline rush.
7. Unbelievable – 2019
- Starring: Toni Collette, Merritt Wever, Kaitlyn Dever
- Director: Susannah Grant
- Writer: T. Christian Miller and Ken Armstrong
- Run Time: 1 Season 8 Episodes (45-min each)
Based on the 2015 Pulitzer Prize-winning piece “An Unbelievable Story of Rape,” this is among the best productions from Netflix in a long time and, indeed, the best detective-centric plot we have seen in a long time. The eight-part drama follows the case of a teenage girl from Washington who claims she was raped in her bedroom before retracting her statement after police interrogation. A similar incident that occurs elsewhere later validates her initial story.
The two detectives, played by Toni Collette and Merritt Wever, refuse to accept the young girl’s guilt and go on a committed journey to find the perpetrator. Unbelievable was praised for shifting the focus from the abusers to the victims and making their stories heard in a true crime format, in addition to being a thrilling watch and insanely binge-able. Everyone should pay close attention!
8. Whistleblower – 2010
- Starring: Rachel Weisz, Monica Bellucci, Vanessa Redgrave
- Director: Larysa Kondrack
- Writer: Larysa Kondracki and Eilis Kirwan
- Run Time: 1 hr 52 min
The Whistleblower is a true story about a former Nebraskan police officer who volunteers for the United Nations peacekeeping mission in post-war Bosnia. Once there, she uncovers a human trafficking scandal involving peacekeeping officials and finds herself alone in a devastated country against a hostile system.
Rachel Weisz plays the whistleblower in a powerful lead role, but the true star of the film is its director, Larysa Kondracki, who delivers a perfectly executed political thriller with utmost authenticity thanks to near documentary-style filmmaking.
9. The Hateful Eight – 2015
- Starring: Samuel L. Jackson, Kurt Russell, Jennifer Jason Leigh
- Writer and Director: Quentin Tarantino
- Run Time: 2 hr 39 min
The Hateful Eight’s limited-engagement 70mm Roadshow presentation over the 2015 holidays was undeniably transporting and nostalgic. The Hateful Eight was overshadowed at the box office by Star Wars: The Force Awakens and was a box-office disappointment, if not an outright flop.
The Hateful Eight is ultimately a nihilistic chamber drama about a handful of uniformly awful people in a 19th-century Wyoming cabin gradually double-crossing and killing each other. It is handsomely crafted and impressively acted, but it is emotionally hollow.
The best part: Ennio Morricone’s first Academy Award went to the atmospheric, often downright catchy score. He was the oldest celeb ever to win a competitive Oscar at the time.
10. Red Notice – 2021
- Starring: Dwayne Johnson, Gal Gadot, Ryan Reynolds
- Writer and Director: Rawson Marshall Thunder
- Run Time: 1 hr 58 min
Rawson Marshall’s film may not elicit much critical thought, but Thunder’s modern take on the caper film is an excellent way to kill two hours if all you want is a movie with good-looking movie stars, heaps of action, and some ridiculous one-liners you can think of.
Dwayne Johnson and Ryan Reynolds aren’t exactly anti-type, but their on-screen chemistry keeps this international heist thriller moving along at a comfortable pace. Reynolds appears to be struggling to keep a straight face when delivering a tragic monologue about his relationship with his father.
11. Flint Town – 2018
- Starring: Tim Johnson, Bridgette Balasko, Robert Frost
- Director: Zackary Canepari, Drea Cooper, Jessica Dimmock
- Run Time: 1 Season 8 Episodes (34-47 min each)
Flint, Michigan, has been hit by several setbacks since the 1960s. When General Motors reduced its workforce by thousands, the town’s population was nearly halved. Unsurprisingly, it later became known as one of the most dangerous cities in the United States, with off-the-charts crime rates. Since 2014, Flint has gained tragic notoriety due to a public health emergency caused by the contamination of its local water supply.
Flint Town examines the city’s perpetual state of crisis through the eyes of the local police department, which has been dealing with this dire scenario while losing more funding year after year due to the city’s deteriorating financial situation.
The few officers who remain in policing are nearing the end of their careers. As a result, the docuseries is gripping and rich, with a cast of compelling characters. It is, however, a brutal and sobering account of how far an American city is allowed to fail.
12. The Keepers – 2017
- Starring: Gemma Hoskins, Abbie Schaub, Virginia Anzengruber
- Director: Ryan White
- Run Time: 1 Season 7 Episodes (45 min each)
With true crime at an all-time high and Making a Murderer making millions, Netflix’s The Keepers arrived to rule the crime story movie category. While the two shows share a genre and general tone of voice, The Keepers is far more interesting. For one thing, it focuses on the victims and their stories rather than the heinous perpetrators. Second, it foregoes cliffhangers in favor of substance without sacrificing breathtaking twists and revelations.
It meticulously investigates the unsolved murder of Catherine Cesnik – a Baltimore nun in 1969, suspected of being murdered to cover up the sexual abuse at the Catholic high school where she taught. The Keepers, adroitly edited, beautifully shot, and featuring great music by Blake Neely, unfolds a horrific story and emphatically captures the pain that lingers five decades later.
13. Uncut Gems – 2019
- Starring: Adam Sandler, LaKeith Stanfield, Kevin Garnett
- Director: Benny Safdie, Josh Safdie
- Writer: Ronald Bronstein, Josh Safdie, Benny Safdie
- Run Time: 2 hr 15 min
An insane, anxiety-inducing thriller that turns Adam Sandler into a thrill-seeking machine speaks volumes about the film’s rhythm. It follows a jeweler who gets into trouble with seemingly everyone in New York – a gang, NBA player Kevin Garnett, other jewelers, his family, strange twins who appear out of nowhere – well, everyone. All of this mayhem happens against the backdrop of him believing he has “hit big” and is about to receive a handsome amount of money.
If you’ve seen Good Time, you know what to expect from director Safdie brothers: excruciating tension that builds even when you think it can’t. And that may be Uncut Gems’ only flaw; the tension isn’t all that different from Good Time and having seen one, you can guess where the other is going.
14. The Alienist – 2018
- Starring: Daniel Brühl, Luke Evans, Dakota Fanning
- Director: Jakob Verbruggen et al.
- Writer: Hossein Amini, E. Max Frye et al.
- Run Time: 2 Season 18 Episodes (45-55 min each)
The Alienist, based on Caleb Carr’s blockbuster crime novel, follows a group of amateur investigators in 1896 New York: Daniel Brühl as Dr. Laszlo Kreizler, the formidable titular “alienist” who studies the psychology of those alienated from society; Luke Evans as newspaper illustrator John Moore; and Dakota Fanning as Sara Howard, the first female employee of the New York Police Department.
The show’s trio of amateur yet brilliant detectives must solve crime mysteries involving haunting and gruesome murders, and their dynamic is critical to their success. The Alienist is a fascinating must-see for crime fans due to its compelling characters, dark aesthetics, and intriguing and unconventional plot. The Alienist is one of the best mystery movies on NetFlix.
15. I Don’t Feel at Home in This World Anymore – 2017
- Starring: Melanie Lynskey, Chris Doubek(voice), Marilyn Faith Hickey
- Writer and Director: Macon Blair
- Run Time: 1 hr 33 min
I Don’t Feel at Home in This World Anymore is the first film directed by actor Macon Blair (who was excellent in both Blue Ruin and Green Room), and while it is shaggy and tonally inconsistent, there is a lot to like here. First and foremost, I’m a massive fan of the (underrated) Melanie Lynskey, which will predispose you to enjoy this film from the get-go.
After Lynskey’s home is broken into, Ruth seeks vengeance on the perpetrators with the assistance of her martial arts-obsessed neighbor Tony (Elijah Wood, sporting an impressive rat-tail).
16. A Cop Movie – 2021
- Starring: Leonardo Alonso, Raúl Briones, Mónica Del Carmen
- Director: Alonso Ruizpalacios
- Writer: David Gaitán, Alonso Ruizpalacios
- Run Time: 1 hr 47 min
Alonso Ruizpalacios’s Mexican film A Cop Movie blends fact and fiction, documentary and narrative, to tell the story of two police officers – Teresa and Montoya. The two police officers whose dreams are dashed by the corruption of their profession and who eventually find love, comfort, and peace in each other’s company.
Ruizpalacios takes thrilling risks in structuring this genre-bending story, cutting stories into parts and jumping between the harrowingly genuine and captivatingly non-real. Despite his daring maneuvers, the through-line is always Teresa and Montoya: their love for each other and an institution that, in an ideal world, would have supported them and the people they vowed to protect.
To its credit, A Cop Movie adds much-needed nuance to the big picture rather than simply humanizing the controversial police force. In the end, they’re no different than any other underpaid laborer struggling to make ends meet. A Cop Movie does not sugarcoat the fact that the police, like so many other employees, are confined in a broken system that is long overdue for a significant overhaul. A Cop Movie is one of the best new crime movies on Netflix.
17. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo – 2011
- Starring: Daniel Craig plays Mikael Blomkvist, Rooney Mara plays Lisbeth Salander, Stellan Skarsgard plays Martin Vanger, Christopher Plummer plays Henrik Vanger, and Steven Berkoff plays Dirch Frode.
- Directed by: David Fincher
- Written By: Steven Zaillian
- Total Run Time: 2 hr 38 min
Mikael Blomkvist, who is tasked with unraveling the mystery surrounding the death of Vanger’s niece, is the main character in this film directed by David Fincher, which contributed to the director’s rise to fame. Vanger seems to be certain that someone associated with him, a member of his family, is responsible for the death of his niece; yet, it appears that there is a lot more to this story.
Lisbeth aids Mikael Blomkvist, and the two of them work together to investigate Harriet’s disappearance as thoroughly as they possibly can. Do not skip out on seeing it because it is one of the best movies ever made and contains elements from a variety of genres, including crime, action, drama, suspense, and mystery, among others.
18. Good Time – 2017
- Starring: Robert Pattinson plays Constantine Connie Nikas, Benny Safdie plays Nikolas, Buddy Duress plays Ray, Taliah Lennie Webster plays Crystal, and Jennifer Jason Leigh plays Corey Ellman.
- Directed by: Josh Safdie and Benny Safdie brothers
- Written by: Ronald Bronstein and Josh Safdie
- Total Run Time: 1 hr 41 min
In the movie, Robert Pattinson, his brother, and Connie, who is a bank robber, steal $65,000 from a bank. After running as fast as they can, the two get themselves cleaned up at a restaurant as quickly as they can. However, they were apprehended by law enforcement, and while Nick was taken into custody, Connie could elude capture and get away. Connie makes an effort to secure a bail bond and then discovers that she needs an additional $10,000. He is trying everything in his power to get his brother released, and he even asks his girlfriend to assist him in this endeavor. However, he soon discovers that Nick has been rushed to the hospital after getting into a fight with another prisoner.
Do not skip out on watching this performance of Robert’s on Netflix; it is easily one of his top works.
19. Ocean’s Eleven – 2001
- Starring: George Clooney plays Danny Ocean, Brad Pitt plays Robert Rusty Ryan, Bernie Mac plays Frank Catton, Elliot Gould plays Reuben Tishkoff, Casey Affleck plays Virgil Malloy, and Matt Damon plays Linus Caldwell
- Directed by: Steven Soderbergh
- Written by: Ted Griffin
- Total Run Time: 1 hr 56 min
Watching the film Ocean’s Eleven is an absolute blast. Even though it is filled with action, crime, and drama, you will get the sense that the protagonist, or the thief, is justified in doing his work since he only takes from those who are wealthy and will be able to deal with the loss. This is because he only steals from those who are rich. The best thing about the protagonist, Danny Ocean, is that he does not take advantage of others who are less fortunate or those who do not merit having their trust broken.
However, for some reason, we have come to have a soft spot in our hearts for those who have committed crimes. Why hold off, then? You can watch this exciting and suspenseful crime movie on Netflix.
20. Amanda Knox – 2011
- Cast: Amanda Knox, Giuliano Mignini, Meredith Kercher, Stephanie Kercher, Rudy Guede, Raffaele Sollecito, Nick Pisa, Valter Biscotti, Stefano Conti.
- Directed by: Rod Blackhurst and Brian McGinn
- Written by: Matthew Hamachek and Brian McGinn
- Total Run Time: 1 hr 27 min
Are you familiar with the tragic event that took place in the year 2007, which occurred over a decade ago? In that case, you should stream the documentary so that you are aware of all the details. This is a factual account of a criminal act. The subject of the documentary film Amanda Knox is a woman named Amanda Knox, who was found responsible for the murder of a student in Italy.
It’s one of the best movies ever made since the characters each tell a true crime story with their own unique style and are based on an actual event. You can watch it on Netflix to figure out precisely what took on at that time.
There you have it! Our selection of the best true crime movies on Netflix that you can watch right now. We have also included a few excellent crime mini-series that have high binge-worthiness.
Each of our picks is worth a watch for their gripping storytelling, outstanding acting, and great directing styles, and the best thing is that you don’t have to leave the comfort and safety of your home to watch them all, only on Netflix.