Netflix regularly rotates movies and TV shows in and out of its streaming lineup, and we track the comings and goings of bigger titles. But there are other titles with less name recognition that rarely leave Netflix's library yet are well worth watching. We've scoured Netflix to bring you some of the streaming service's hidden gems — awesome, if somewhat unknown, movies and TV shows you should definitely check out.
We're also tracking on the best shows on Netflix (if these are too niche for you), as well as the best family movies on Netflix. We've also got guides to the tons of original shows set to drop in the upcoming services Disney+ and Apple TV+.
I ignored this show purely on the grounds of its title, which had me thinking it would be a boring and uninspiring future-shock. Turns out, I was wrong, as Exec. Producer David Fincher's delivered a great anthology series for Netflix, which moves between comedy, horror, dystopic drama and action. And at around 15 minutes a pop, you'll binge through its 18 episode before you know it. Since there's so much variance, you might not like each episode equally, and that's the risk with anthology shows.
78% Rotten Tomatoes
8.9 on IMDb
Starring: Scott Whyte, Nolan North, Matthew Yang King
The good word about The Dragon Prince, the latest show from writer Aaron Ehasz (Avatar: The Last Airbender) has already spread around the Tom's Guide offices. While his previous show bore some resemblance to Lord of The Rings, this new project certainly feels related to Game of Thrones (and the show runners don't shy away from jokes to that regard). The show's unique animation style — one half 2D anime, the other half 3D cartoon — flourishes and gives The Dragon Prince a feel that's all its own.
100% Rotten Tomatoes
8.5/10 on IMDb
Stars:Jack De Sena, Paula Burrows, Sasha Rojen
It you liked Black Mirror, Netflix is betting that you want another drip of dystopic drama, something Kiss Me First delivers in spades. In the series, protagonist Leila falls down a rabbit hole that you'll find familiar if you've ever seen The Matrix. And while Leila jumps between our world and her alternate reality, the show focuses on how addictive virtual worlds can be, as its heroes solve murder mysteries. A bleak look at how virtual reality could wreck our culture, Kiss Me First starts off slow (a crime most Netflix shows are guilty of) but shows great promise.
57% Rotten Tomatoes
6.3/10 on IMDb
Stars:Tallulah Haddon, Simona Brown, Matthew Beard
Yes, yes, we know. Iron Fist season 1 was atrociously bad, even by the lowered standards of the Marvel Netflix partnership. And that's definitely why nobody gave the show's second season a chance, which was a crucial mistake. This follow-up focuses on the magical ninja gang warfare that season 1 was so light on, and throws out nearly all of the corporate boardroom bickering that made the original such a grind to finish.
Of course, there won't be another season, as Iron Fist fell in the big culling of Marvel shows that preceded Disney Plus.
56% Rotten Tomatoes
7.8/10 on IMDb
Stars:Finn Jones, Jessica Henwick, Jessica Stroup
The Coen Brothers (Fargo, The Big Lebowski) are back with a star-studded film-length anthology that you'll only find on Netflix. Critics applauded the The Ballad of Buster Scruggs for its consistent quality, where its 6 featurettes - which take place in the wild west - don't feel disparate or unbalanced. Stars include Coen favorites such as Tim Blake Nelson and other big names like Liam Neeson, Zoe Kazan, James Franco and Tom Waits.
92% Rotten Tomatoes
7.4/10 on IMDb
Stars: Tim Blake Nelson, Bill Heck, James Franco, Liam Neeson, Zoe Kazan, Tom Waits
You can easily figure out when someone grew up by learning which toys they love, and it's that deep connection that fuels this documentary miniseries from Netflix. Episodes in the first season focus on the histories of action figures from properties such as G.I. Joe and He-Man, as well as the Barbie and Star Wars phenomenas. Its second season covers Transformers, Hello Kitty, Star Trek and LEGO, while an upcoming third season will explore everything from Power Rangers to My Little Pony, and even cover pro wrestling toys.
100% Rotten Tomatoes
8.4/10 on IMDb
The history of video games adapted to other formats is very hit-or-miss, but don't be afraid of Netflix's animated adaptation of the Castlevania franchise. Instead, sit back and enjoy this bizarre -- and at times violent -- thrill ride that explains how Vlad Dracula Tepes became the mythical monster we all know, and re-introduces vampire-hunter Trevor Belmont. And while its first season is a brisk 92 minutes (spread across 4 episodes), its well-reviewed second season is twice as long, at 8 episodes of about 24 to 28 minutes a piece.
90% Rotten Tomatoes
8.1 on IMDb
Starring: Richard Armitage, James Callis, Graham McTavish
90% Rotten Tomatoes
8.1/10 on IMDb
Starring: Richard Armitage, James Callis, Alejandra Reynoso