158 Best Movies & Shows Released in 2023 On Netflix UK (Page 10)

Staff & contributors

Find the best movies and show to watch from the year 2023. These handpicked recommendations are highly-rated by viewers and critics.

Built entirely around the star power of its lead performers, A Very Good Girl does, indeed, provide ample opportunities for both Kathryn Bernardo and Dolly de Leon to chew the scenery with wild abandon. But even their most campily delivered one-liners are only entertaining in the moment, as the film twists itself into increasingly complicated (and still oddly sanitized) knots to keep its thrills going. It ends with an incredibly muddled view of the kinds of violence perpetrated by the wealthy and the less fortunate, as if the studio funding the movie prevented it from becoming the bolder, edgier story it seems to want to be.

Genre: Comedy, Drama, Thriller

Actor: Althea Ruedas, Ana Abad-Santos, Angel Aquino, Chie Filomeno, Dolly de Leon, Donna Cariaga, Gabby Padilla, Gillian Vicencio, Iwa Moto, Jake Ejercito, Joji Vitug, Kaori Oinuma, Kathryn Bernardo

Director: Petersen Vargas

Rating: NR

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More a clip show than a real stand-up special—and certainly not a documentary about the New York-based comedy club—The Improv: 60 and Still Standing only really seems to be for the most hardcore devotees of American stand-up. But even if you are familiar with all the comics who make an appearance here, the film doesn't give their already brief routines enough time to breathe. They've ostensibly been instructed to prepare their best stuff or to just riff, and the resulting performances are very half-baked, with none of the comedians able to dive into any particularly funny or challenging material. They're all still lightly amusing in different ways, but this movie really could've just been a series of YouTube videos to commemorate The Improv's 60th anniversary.

Genre: Comedy, Documentary

Actor: Anjelah Johnson-Reyes, Bert Kreischer, Craig Robinson, Deon Cole, Fortune Feimster, Jeff Dunham, Jo Koy, Kevin Nealon, Mark Normand, Whitney Cummings

Director: Jeff Tomsic

Rating: R

Between Overhaul's frequently nonsensical blend of truck racing and vehicular heists, and its focus on found families, the comparisons to the Fast & Furious series are undeniable. This also means that this Brazilian blockbuster is also much less engaging than it thinks it is; the stakes don't feel particularly urgent, and the near indifference of the rest of the world to all this criminal activity means these characters may as well be fantasy heroes. It does, however, have more significantly more color to it than its Hollywood role model, thanks to the gorgeous vistas of Brazil and the unique physical attributes of the big rigs the main characters drive. All things considered, it's pretty novel to have these high-speed chases through more cumbersome vehicles—less flashiness, more brute power.

Genre: Action, Crime, Drama, Thriller

Actor: Evandro Mesquita, Fumassa Alves, Gillray Coutinho, Leandro Tadeu Gonçalves, Milhem Cortaz, Paulo Vilhena, Raphael Logam, Sheron Menezes, Thiago Martins, Vitória Valentin

Director: Tomás Portella

Rating: R

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The Perfect Find follows Jenna (Gabrielle Union), a fashion editor trying to make a comeback after a public breakup and a high-profile firing. She lands a job at a new fashion magazine, but this is complicated when she falls for her charming and much younger coworker, Eric (Keith Powers), who just so happens to be the son of her boss. Admittedly, the plot is as cliche as can be, with a few shenanigans, quirky best friends, and an ex or two popping up in the third act. But it's also easy to fall for, especially with Union as the charismatic lead. The jokes about her character and Eric's age gap land well most times, and many parts of the film are beautiful enough, most notably: the talent, the color grading, and the eye-catching New York landscape. 

Genre: Comedy, Romance

Actor: Aisha Hinds, D.B. Woodside, Gabrielle Union, Gina Torres, Godfrey, Janet Hubert, Keith Powers, La La Anthony, Leigh Davenport, Numa Perrier, Remy Ma, Shayna McHayle, Sterling 'Steelo' Brim, Ts Madison, Winnie Harlow, Yrsa Daley-Ward

Director: Numa Perrier

Rating: R

You ought to know what you’re getting into with a movie like The Out-Laws, a production from the Adam Sandler-founded Happy Madison banner that’s behind such lofty cinematic heights as Grown Ups and Paul Blart: Mall Cop. Even in that charitable frame of reference, though, The Out-Laws feels, even more than usual, like a tax write-off for its creators and a sweet solely-for-the-paycheck gig for its starry cast, who don’t have to do much by way of actual dramatic work here. The perfunctory editing and bland direction often seem disinterested in (or, perhaps, embarrassed by) most of the script’s attempts to be funny, and so the film rushes through its scenario, which is only mildly amusing to begin with. In a movie like this, that’s more of a blessing than a curse, even if it does mean some of its better moments get short shrift from the whistlestop treatment. All in all, even as Happy Madison vehicles go, this is an utterly forgettable 95 minutes — the kind you’ll barely even be able to recall by the time the credits roll.

Genre: Action, Comedy, Romance

Actor: Adam Devine, Anthony Belevtsov, Betsy Sodaro, Blake Anderson, Cale Schultz, Dean Winters, Derek Russo, Ellen Barkin, Haley Leary, Jackie Sandler, Jackson Beals, Julie Hagerty, Laci Mosley, Lauren Lapkus, Lil Rel Howery, Lynne Ashe, Michael Rooker, Mo Gallini, Montrel Miller, Nina Dobrev, Orelon Sidney, Otis Winston, Paul Eliopoulos, Peggy Walton-Walker, Pierce Brosnan, Poorna Jagannathan, Rebecca Covert, Reyn Doi, Richard Kind, Sunny Sandler, Tywayne Wheatt, Zele Avradopoulos

Director: Tyler Spindel

Rating: R

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In the sea of mommy-horror films, Run Rabbit Run would float somewhere in the middle. Despite Sarah Snook's imposing commitment to playing a mother haunted by her past, the story doesn't meet her halfway with a memorable script. The dynamic between mother and daughter gets stuck in an exhausting loop of sudden bursts of anger and angst followed by glaringly quick reconciliation. Twists and scares are present as Snook's character, also named Sarah, confronts the dark and disturbing truths of her past, but it feels more mandatory than useful. The potential for transforming gripping familial tension into horror is lost in a meandering mother/daughter fight.

Genre: Drama, Horror, Thriller

Actor: Damon Herriman, Genevieve Morris, Greta Scacchi, Julia Davis, Katherine Slattery, Lily LaTorre, Michala Banas, Naomi Rukavina, Neil Melville, Sarah Snook, Trevor Jamieson

Director: Daina Reid

Seemingly engineered in a lab to appeal strictly to romantic comedy enthusiasts who are familiar with every trope, Make Me Believe is charming and enjoyable in the moment, but ultimately does little with its ingredients. The things that it gets right are pretty foolproof: beautiful Turkish locales, steamy PG-rated romance, and a good dose of humor from supporting characters who can see the spark of love even before the couple does. Unfortunately this is all window dressing for a story built on flimsy foundations. The protagonist's assignment to book an interview doesn't actually carry that much weight, which makes the risk of pursuing and/or seemingly betraying her childhood neighbor feel inconsequential. And when these two characters inevitably meet in the middle, their connection is unconvincing, draining the excitement out of everything that follows.

Genre: Comedy, Romance

Actor: Ayça Ayşin Turan, Çağrı Çıtanak, Ekin Koç, Naz Çağla Irmak, Yıldız Kültür, Zerrin Sümer

Director: Evren Karabıyık Günaydın, Murat Saraçoğlu

Rating: R

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Set in the capital of Peru, How to Deal with a Heartbreak is a follow-up to the mildly successful romantic comedy How to Get Over a Breakup. The titles are pretty self-explanatory, but where the first film is strictly about romance, the sequel experiments with more tender themes like family and friendship. It features everyday characters meant to seem relatable and endearing, but halfway through watching, one can’t help but wonder why any of this matters. The stakes are so low and the premise so ordinary, it feels like a huge effort to simply care about the movie. Some rom-coms are saved by a funny script or a charming cast, but this has none of that. The most rousing part of the film is when one character (I won’t divulge who) dies, and so Maria Fe is forced to grapple with the heaviness of death. It’s the one moment in the movie that feels real, but sadly it’s tossed aside to make way for more generic fare.

Genre: Comedy

Actor: Ana María Orozco, Carlos Carlín, Christopher Von Uckermann, Gisela Ponce de León, Jason Day, Jely Reategui, Karina Jordán, Norma Martínez, Salvador del Solar

Director: Joanna Lombardi

Rating: R

All the little twists in the case of Mirna Salihin's murder are intriguing enough to speculate over, so Ice Cold is definitely a true-crime case worth revisiting. The problem is in how the documentary indulges sensationalist arguments and pure speculation with the same level of urgency as it does with expert counsel. A large part of the film has to do with how this trial started to become such a fixture in Indonesian public life, but it feels as if the movie would rather provoke even more baseless conspiracies through its gossipy tone than provide smarter analysis. There's an appeal to how simple this case is relative to other true-crime stories, but this shouldn't be an excuse to haphazardly throw opposing perspectives at each other for the sake of drama.

Genre: Crime, Documentary

Actor: Edi Darmawan Salihin, Jessica Wongso, Marcella Zalianty, Mirna Salihin, Otto Hasibuan

Director: Rob Sixsmith

Rating: PG-13

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The idea of a true-crime documentary being narrated mostly by the very person who did it should be appealing to fans of the genre, especially those who would rather stay away from non-violent crimes. And Vjeran Tomic is a compelling thief, with his own perspective on the people he tends to steal from and the kind of life he thinks he's owed. But by fixating so intensely on the method to the crime, it eventually loses its appeal—eventually becoming clear that there are so many potentially interesting (and more emotional) perspectives to the story that are being left out. Tomic may be a somewhat morally ambiguous criminal, but his testimonials alone, which are accompanied by mostly corny reenactments, can't carry an entire movie that teases but never fully delves into shady dealings in the world of the fine arts.

Genre: Crime, Documentary

Actor: Vjeran Tomic

Director: Jamie Roberts

Rating: NR

Even if it knows to keep its ambitions modest, Holiday in the Vineyards still doesn't find much to do for its small cast. The actors do what they can and certainly seem like they're having fun play-acting a warm Christmas romcom, but when all is said and done there simply isn't anything particularly striking about the collection of romcom-isms assembled for this movie. Even the film's premise—which seems to promise a unique clashing of values between a small town and big capitalist business—resolves things with little more than a pat on the back. It's certainly sweet on the surface, but these people we're asked to to spend 107 minutes with still feel like strangers to us by the end.

Genre: Drama, Romance

Actor: Alan Toy, Annika Noelle, Carlos Solórzano, Cullen Douglas, Eileen Davidson, Gregory Zarian, Josh Swickard, Kaleina Cordova, Manuel Rafael Lozano, Omar Gooding, Paul Witten, Sol Rodríguez

Director: Alex Ranarivelo

Rating: PG

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The Spy Kids movies have always been knowingly corny, which hasn't changed for this latest installment—it's just that it also has an odd lack of color and personality to its generic action movie shenanigans. This is especially disappointing given the film's focus on video games, which it only seems to understand in their most surface level terms. And because there's a lack of definition in the movie's rules and logic, the plot progresses without any weight or sense of mounting excitement. These are just people going through the motions toward some unclear message about the value of honesty and kindness, which never really factor into the actual adventure and keep the status quo firmly unchanged.

Genre: Action, Action & Adventure, Adventure, Comedy, Family

Actor: Billy Magnussen, Connor Esterson, D.J. Cotrona, Everly Carganilla, Gina Rodriguez, Joe Schilling, Neal Kodinsky, Solar Dena Bennett, Zachary Levi

Director: Robert Rodriguez

Rating: PG

Bogged down by a platonic best friendship with a suspicious lack of communication and the repetitive use of tacky nicknames, Seasons never gains enough momentum to justify 108 minutes of uninteresting romance tropes. Carlo Aquino and Lovi Poe's chemistry is overshadowed by the glaring mound of unoriginal dialogue and drawn-out story. The lack of awareness and childish antics that culminate at the tail-end of a 15-year-long friendship are more disappointing than believable. With no external (or personal) struggles of their own, every sequence reinforces how flat and underdeveloped our leads are, as if they only engage with the world when close to, or thinking about, each other. Love-me/Love-me-not is never enough to carry the film.

Genre: Drama, Romance

Actor: Carlo Aquino, Lovi Poe, Sarah Edwards, Sheenly Gener

Director: Easy Ferrer

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Mae is a hopeless romantic looking for love and more clients for her custom t-shirts. After a meet-cute at the grocery store, she turns to an app called Missed Connections to find him. After they finally meet, Mae realizes he has a connection with someone else. Now determined to make him fall in love with her, she hires him to rebuild her website. As a rom-com, the comedy isn't particularly outstanding or noticeable. The romance, and Mae, are hard to root for, especially when her obsessions go too far, her slut-shaming goes unchecked, and it all lasts for 90% of the film without any real cathartic resolutions. 

Genre: Comedy, Drama, Romance

Actor: Chie Filomeno, JC Santos, Kelvin Miranda, Matet De Leon, Miles Ocampo

Director: Jelise Chung

Whether you enjoy it or not, edgy, offensive comedy has become a legitimate style of its own—which means there's a way to get it right. Matt Rife has confidence and a decent range of tricks to keep his routines dynamic, but far too much of this set is spent simply pointing out different things and people who piss him off, for reasons that he doesn't articulate very well. Insults can be funny if they're cleverly written enough but Rife only ever sounds like he's trying to prove himself to his haters, not through his own creativity but by bragging that he has a Netflix special now. Even for comedians who like to punch down, you have to have some humility; anything less is just a drunken rant.

Genre: Comedy

Actor: Matt Rife

Director: Erik Griffin

Rating: R

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