Luckiest Girl Alive is new No. 1 Netflix movie — but critics and audiences are split

Mila Kunis as TifAni "Ani" Fanelli in Netflix's Luckiest Girl Alive
(Image credit: Netflix)

Luckiest Girl Alive may have only landed on Netflix a few days ago (Friday, October 7 to be specific) but the thriller has already climbed the streamer’s Top 10 most-watched list and currently sits in the No. 1 spot. 

The movie became Netflix’s latest chart-topper after displacing horror film Mr. Harrington’s Phone which previously held the top spot. However, while subscribers seem to be enjoying the twisty mystery flick that stars Mila Kunis, critics aren’t quite as convinced. 

What is Luckiest Girl Alive about?  

Luckiest Girl Alive sees Mila Kunis play TifAni “Ani” Fanelli, a sharp-tongued New Yorker with a highly sought-after position at a glossy magazine. Not only does she have her career fully figured out, but Ani also has a killer wardrobe and is currently planning her dream wedding with the perfect man. 

However, her meticulously crafted life threatens to unravel when the director of a true crime documentary reaches out and asks her to recount her side of a shocking incident that took place in her teenage years at the prestigious Brentley School. As hidden truths come to light, everything Ani has built could ruined. Maybe her luck has finally run out. 

Alongside Kunis, the movie also stars Connie Britton, Finn Wittrock, Scoot McNairy, Justine Lupe and Thomas Barbusca. It’s based on the 2015 novel of the same name by Jessica Knoll, which has drawn many comparisons to the global best-seller Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn. 

What do critics say about Luckiest Girl Alive? 

Netflix Original movies have a habit of being fairly divisive usually receiving a warmer reception from viewers than critics, and Luckiest Girl Alive is no exception. The thriller currently scores a fairly low 43% on Rotten Tomatoes from critics, but its audience score is a much more positive 77%.  

Noel Murray of the Los Angeles Times wasn’t particularly impressed claiming the movie “falls into the trap of trying too hard to capture not just the book’s flashback-heavy plot but also its distinctive voice." The Guardian’s Adrian Horton was similarly critical saying “the story [Luckiest Girl Alive] ultimately tells is an empty, self-serving fantasy.”

Amy Nicholson of the New York Times was a little more positive, writing “Kunis’s alpha female appears at once ferocious and like a conspicuous sham.” As was Deadline’s Todd McCarthy who labeled the film “formulaic” but also suggested that “the story nonetheless confronts the persistence of guilt over past questionable behavior and how people struggle to deal with it, even long after the fact." 

Should you stream Luckiest Girl Alive?  

Luckiest Girl Alive appears to be going down well with Netflix subscribers, and the film’s rapid ascension to the top of the streaming service’s most-watched list is a clear indication of a high level of interest. Critics aren’t particularly impressed, but that’s not necessarily a reason to instantly dismiss this one. 

If you like films in the vein of Gone Girl and The Girl on the Train, then Luckiest Girl Alive is definitely worth adding to your watchlist. Mila Kunis is a very capable lead and the plot has more than enough surprising twists to keep you hooked for the entire two-hour running time. As far as Netflix movies go, you could do a whole lot worse than Luckiest Girl Alive. 

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Rory Mellon
Entertainment Editor (UK)

Rory is an Entertainment Editor at Tom’s Guide based in the UK. He covers a wide range of topics but with a particular focus on gaming and streaming. When he’s not reviewing the latest games, searching for hidden gems on Netflix, or writing hot takes on new gaming hardware, TV shows and movies, he can be found attending music festivals and getting far too emotionally invested in his favorite football team.