The 12 Best Weird Movies on Netflix

Updated January 2, 2022 • Staff
Weirdness is subjective: afterall, what’s downright absurd to one viewer may be “weird lite” for the next. But there are a few films that most moviegoers can agree are a little more far-out than usual, whether because of their bizarre plots, unsettling humor, surreal scenography or uncanny characters. But the truth is, the “weirdness” factor doesn’t always translate into cinematic merit. Indeed, although strange films are usually unforgettable, it can be tricky to assess whether the odd and outlandish is worth the full watch. To help you navigate the world of weird, we’ve rounded up of the top fifty films that are both highly unusual and definitely worth your time.
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12.

The One I Love (2014)

Elisabeth Moss is in it. Calling The One I Love a romantic-comedy, looking it up, or trusting anyone else about it -- especially my review, will ruin this film for you. Just watch it. If one's penchant is typically opposed to titles with 'love' in them, then it's for you. Just hit 'play', or 'start', or whatever. The initial wtf-ness that attracted me to it is compelled further by excellent acting. And Elisabeth Moss is in it.

Genre: Comedy, Drama, Romance
Actor: Elisabeth Moss, Kiana Cason, Mark Duplass, Marlee Matlin, Mary Steenburgen, Ted Danson
Director: Charlie McDowell
Rating: R
Go to Netflix
11.

Happy as Lazzaro (2018)

Set in 1970s Italian countryside, this is a quirky movie that’s full of plot twists.

Lazzaro is a dedicated worker at a tobacco estate. His village has been indebted to a marquise and like everyone else, he works without a wage and in arduous conditions.

Lazzaro strikes a friendship with the son of the marquise, who, in an act of rebellion against his mother, decides to fake his own kidnapping. The two form an unlikely friendship in a story that mixes magical realism with social commentary.

Genre: Drama, Fantasy
Actor: Adriano Tardiolo, Agnese Graziani, Alba Rohrwacher, Alice Rohrwacher, Carlo Tarmati, Leonardo Nigro, Luca Chikovani, Natalino Balasso, Nicoletta Braschi, Pasqualina Scuncia, Sergi Lopez, Tommaso Ragno
Director: Alice Rohrwacher
Rating: PG-13
Go to Netflix
10.

A Serious Man (2009)

This is an inexplicably and philosophically dark comedy.

Its protagonist, Larry, is a lackluster professor at a dull university. Then his life starts to unravel: his wife decides to leave him for one of his more successful colleagues; his unemployed brother moves in to stay on his couch.

So Larry ventures on a quest for meaning and clarity within his Jewish community.

All Cohen Brothers fans will appreciate the movie's aesthetics and comedic strength. The protagonist’s struggle will resonate with anyone who has had a religious upbringing: guilt is a big theme here.

I felt like I had to rewatch it to understand it. But I also enjoyed that weird sense of not understanding everything that's going on. Much like life itself.

The film rightfully earned itself two nominations for the Oscars, including Best Picture.

Genre: Comedy, Drama
Actor: Aaron Wolff, Adam Arkin, Alan Mandell, Amy Landecker, Brent Braunschweig, Fred Melamed, Fyvush Finkel, George Wyner, Jessica McManus, Katherine Borowitz, Michael Lerner, Michael Stuhlbarg, Peter Breitmayer, Punnavith Koy, Raye Birk, Richard Kind, Sari Lennick, Simon Helberg, Steve Park, Yelena Shmulenson
Director: Ethan Coen, Joel Coen
Rating: R
Go to Netflix
9.

Swiss Army Man (2016)

Probably the weirdest film you'll ever see. Paul Dano plays a borderline suicidal man who befriends a farting corpse that washed up from the sea as played by Daniel Radcliffe. It's an adventurous, witty and hilarious film yet it is filled with discreet and very deep lessons about society and norms. The soundtrack is so charmingly unique as well, it's a definite must-watch for anyone looking for a refreshing comedy.

Genre: Adventure, Comedy, Drama, Fantasy, Romance
Actor: Aaron Marshall, Andy Hull, Antonia Ribero, Daniel Radcliffe, Marika Casteel, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Paul Dano, Richard Gross, Shane Carruth, Timothy Eulich
Director: Dan Kwan, Daniel Kwan, Daniel Scheinert
Rating: R
Go to Netflix
8.

Burning (2018)

Vague statement alert: Burning is not a movie that you “get”; it’s a movie you experience. Based on a short story by Murakami, it’s dark and bleak in a way that comes out more in the atmosphere of the movie rather than what happens in the story. Working in the capital Seoul, a young guy from a poor town near the North Korean border runs into a girl from his village. As he starts falling for her, she makes an unlikely acquaintance with one of Seoul’s wealthy youth (played by Korean-American actor Steven Yeun, pictured above.) This new character is mysterious in a way that’s all-too-common in South Korea: young people who have access to money no one knows where it came from, and who are difficult to predict or go against. Two worlds clash, poor and rich, in a movie that’s really three movies combined into one - a character-study, a romance, and a revenge thriller.

Genre: Drama, Mystery, Thriller
Actor: Ah-in Yoo, ChoI Seung-ho, Jang Won-hyung, Jeon Jong-seo, Jong-seo Jun, Jun Jong-seo, Kim Shin-rok, Kim Sin-rock, Kim Soo-kyung, Lee Bong-ryeon, Lee Joong-ok, Min Bok-gi, Moon Sung-keun, Ok Ja-yeon, Soo-Kyung Kim, Steven Yeun, Yoo Ah-in
Director: Chang-dong Lee, Lee Chang-dong
Rating: Not Rated
Go to Netflix
7.

I Don’t Feel at Home in This World Anymore (2017)

This is the first film directed by actor Macon Blair (so good in both Blue Ruin and Green Room), and while it is shaggy and tonally all over the place, there is a lot to recommend here. First off, I’m a huge fan of the (underrated) Melanie Lynskey, so I was primed to like this movie from the get-go. After Ruth’s (Lynskey) home is broken into, she seeks revenge against the perpetrators with help from her martial arts obsessed neighbor Tony (Elijah Wood, sporting an impressive rat-tail). What starts out as an empowering journey for Ruth & Tony quickly teeters into dangerous and increasingly violent territory. This movie is probably not for everyone, but if you’re a fan of 90s indie films and don’t mind some violence mixed in with your dark humor, then you will enjoy this small, well-acted film.

Genre: Comedy, Crime, Drama, Mystery, Thriller
Actor: Chris Doubek, Christine Woods, Dana Millican, David Yow, Derek Mears, Devon Graye, Elijah Wood, Gary Anthony Williams, Jana Lee Hamblin, Jane Levy, Jared Roylance, Jason Manuel Olazabal, Macon Blair, Marilyn Faith Hickey, Matt Orduna, Melanie Lynskey, Michelle Moreno, Myron Natwick, Robert Longstreet, Taylor Tunes
Director: Macon Blair
Rating: Not Rated, TV-MA
Go to Netflix
6.

A Ghost Story (2017)

Twisted yet deep. Sad yet interesting. Slow yet exhilarating. A Ghost Story is an incredible artistic achievement. With hardly any dialog, and breathtakingly long takes in its first half, it manages to bring you in its own creepy world and not let go until you feel completely lonely. Starring Rooney Mara and Casey Affleck as a loving couple who are hit with a horrible tragedy, the beginning is slow, and it's not a plot driven movie, but if you give it a chance it will blow your mind.

Genre: Drama, Fantasy, Romance
Actor: Augustine Frizzell, Brea Grant, Casey Affleck, David Lowery, Kenneisha Thompson, Kesha, Kesha Rose Sebert, Liz Cardenas Franke, Liz Franke, McColm Cephas Jr., Rob Zabrecky, Rooney Mara, Sonia Acevedo, Will Oldham
Director: David Lowery
Rating: R
Go to Netflix
5.

Uncut Gems (2019)

A crazy, anxiety-inducing thriller that turns Adam Sandler into a thrill-generating machine, which in its own speaks volumes about the rhythm of this movie. It follows a jeweler who gets himself in trouble with what feels like all of New York - a gang, Kevin Garnett (the NBA player), other jewelers, his family, odd twins that appear out of nowhere - everyone. This all happens in the backdrop of him feeling he has “hit big” and is on the verge of receiving a lot of money.

If you watched Good Time, you know what to expect from directors Safdie brothers: excruciating tension that keeps building up when you thought it wasn’t possible. And that might be the only problem with Uncut Gems; the tension doesn't feel that different from Good Time, and having watched one you can guess where the other one is going.

Genre: Crime, Drama, Thriller
Actor: Abel Tesfaye, Adam Sandler, Anthony Mecca, Eric Bogosian, Hailey Gates, Idina Menzel, Jake Ryan, John Amos, Judd Hirsch, Julia Fox, Keith Williams Richards, Kevin Garnett, Lakeith Stanfield, Liang Wei-Hei Duncan, Marcia DeBonis, Marshall Greenberg, Mesfin Lamengo, Natasha Lyonne, Noa Fisher, Pom Klementieff, Sahar Bibiyan, Sean Ringgold, Shiv Pai, Suin Zhi Hua-Hilton, Sun Zhi Hua-Hilton, The Weeknd, Tilda Swinton
Director: Benny Safdie, Josh Safdie
Rating: R
Go to Netflix
4.

Raw (2017)

One of the sharpest horror films of the last decade, Julia Ducournau’s Raw follows in the footsteps of films like Carrie by translating coming of age anxieties into visceral full-throated terror. Justine is a beginner veterinary student leaving home for the first time. After a brutal hazing ceremony forces this young vegetarian to eat meat, she develops an insatiable hunger for flesh that begins to consume her.

Raw is as much an intense body-horror (not for the squeamish) as it is an astute psychological drama. Underneath its nightmarish sheen, Ducournau layers social commentary on sexuality, patriarchy, and deviance using the school’s sadistic initiations as metaphors for larger structures. All of this depth is paired with striking cinematography, crisp pacing, and an unforgettable performance from Garance Marillier as Justine.

Genre: Drama, Horror, Mystery
Actor: Alexis Julemont, Benjamin Boutboul, Bérangère Mc Neese, Bouli Lanners, Ella Rumpf, Garance Marillier, Helena Coppejans, Joana Preiss, Julianne Binard, Laurent Lucas, Marouan Iddoub, Rabah Nait Oufella, Sophie Breyer
Director: Julia Ducournau
Rating: R
Go to Netflix
3.

Nightcrawler (2014)

The film stars Jake Gyllenhaal as Lou Bloom, an impromptu freelance videographer who begins covering the crime world in LA for a local TV station. Almost as dark as a mystery can get, it is disturbing, and plays out as a combination of "Drive" and "The Network". The film is visually stunning as well as immensely suspenseful. It then becomes almost impossible to look away, even when you're the most horrified by just how far Bloom is willing to go to reach success. Gyllenhaal's performance is widely compared to that of Robert De Niro in Taxi Driver, which should give you an idea of its caliber.

Genre: Crime, Drama, Mystery, Thriller
Actor: Ann Cusack, Bill Paxton, Bill Seward, Christina De Leon, Dan Gilroy, Eric Lange, Jake Gyllenhaal, James Huang, Jamie McShane, Jonny Coyne, Kathleen York, Kent Shocknek, Kevin Rahm, Kiff VandenHeuvel, Marco Rodriguez, Michael Hyatt, Michael Papajohn, Myra Turley, Price Carson, Rene Russo, Rick Chambers, Rick Garcia, Riz Ahmed, Sharon Tay, Stephanie D'Abruzzo
Director: Dan Gilroy
Rating: R
Go to Netflix

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