The 9 Best New Movies on Netflix in October 2021

Two Jake Gyllenhaal movies, two rom-coms and one frightful horror flick

Jake Gyllenhaal in "The Guilty" (Netflix)

Trying to figure out what to watch on Netflix can be a game in and of itself, but we’re here to narrow down the choices for you and maximize that viewing time. With a robust library of new, original and library content, Netflix can sometimes make it difficult to find what you’re looking for. And in the most dire of situations, it can be beneficial to simply look for what’s new on the streaming service to find something you haven’t seen before. To that end, we’ve rounded up some of the best movies newly added to Netflix in October. These include actual new releases, beloved comedies, Oscar-winning dramas and even underrated gems. There’s a little something for everyone, so you won’t walk away disappointed.

Check out our picks for the best new movies on Netflix in October below.

The Guilty

Jake Gyllenhaal in The Guilty

A Netflix original and a new release in October, “Training Day” director Antoine Fuqua’s “The Guilty” is a nail-biting thriller that takes place entirely within the confines of a 9-1-1 operating center. Jake Gyllenhaal plays a cop who’s been put on 9-1-1 duty for reasons that are not immediately made clear. When he receives a call from a woman who’s been abducted, he works effortlessly to track her down and get help. The story is not as straightforward as it seems, and Gyllenhaal turns in one of his best performances as a man on the edge.

Step Brothers

Sony Pictures

If you want to laugh extremely hard, you can’t go wrong with “Step Brothers.” The 2008 comedy stars Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly as middle-aged men still living with their single parents who are forced to move in together when their parents get married. It’s an absurdist comedy with a very silly premise, but it’s really just an excuse for director Adam McKay to let Ferrell and Reilly’s comedic instincts run wild for 90 straight minutes.

The Holiday

Universal Pictures

It doesn’t get more “romantic comedy” than Nancy Meyers, and the filmmaker’s 2006 rom-com “The Holiday” is the perfect way to kick off the holiday season. Kate Winslet and Cameron Diaz star as two strangers who decide to swap houses for the holidays; Diaz leaves her Los Angeles mansion for a small cottage in England, while Winslet trades her country life for Hollywood. And wouldn’t you know it, the two women discover more about themselves – and find companionship – in the process. The supporting cast includes Jude Law, Jack Black and Eli Wallach, and the film features a fantastic score from Hans Zimmer.



Nothing says epic like “Titanic.” James Cameron’s three-hour, Oscar-dominating drama still stands tall over two decades later as a towering achievement. Kate Winslet stars as a young woman destined to marry a man she doesn’t love, and Leonardo DiCaprio is a scrappy and hungry (and poor) American. Both board the R.M.S. Titanic on the ship’s doomed voyage, as Cameron captures love and loss with thrills and chills to spare.


Paramount Pictures

Director David Fincher has covered the subject matter of serial killers intensely over his career, but his 2007 film “Zodiac” is one of his best – and a total masterpiece. The film charts the real-life investigation into the Zodiac killer murders throughout the late 1960s and early ’70s in the San Francisco Bay Area. The story is told through the eyes of a young cartoonist played by Jake Gyllenhaal, and the stellar ensemble cast includes Mark Ruffalo, Robert Downey Jr., Anthony Edwards, Chloe Sevigny and John Carroll Lynch.

Bad Teacher

Sony Pictures

If R-rated comedies are your speed, 2011’s “Bad Teacher” is a solid choice. Directed by Jake Kasdan (“Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle”) and written by “The Office” alums Lee Eisenberg and Gene Stupnitsky, the film stars Cameron Diaz as a lazy middle school teacher who returns to work in order to raise enough money for a breast enhancement. Justin Timberlake plays the mild-mannered substitute teacher who catches her eye, while Jason Segel is the laid-back gym teacher who finds Diaz’s foul mouth irresistible.

There’s Someone Inside Your House

There's Someone Inside Your House

October means Halloween, which means it’s the perfect time to check out the new release “There’s Someone Inside Your House.” Based on the novel of the same name by Stephanie Perkins, the film stars Sydney Park as a high school student with a mysterious past who is thrust into the middle of a series of murders at her school. What connects each murder is that after each student is killed, a devastating secret about them is revealed. Director Patrick Brice (“Creep”) brings a cinematic, moody aesthetic to the proceedings, and there’s a bit of a “Scream” vibe with the teen angle. It’ll also keep you guessing right up until the very end.

King Arthur: Legend of the Sword

Warner Bros.

A bit of a left-field pick, but trust me, “King Arthur: Legend of the Sword” is underrated. This is the King Arthur legend as told by director Guy Ritchie, so there’s a visceral nature to the action, underlined by Daniel Pemberton’s propulsive score. Charlie Hunnam stars as the eponymous Arthur, while Jude Law plays the evil king Vortigern. Arthurian legend is played fast and loose in the film, and honestly, it’s the action and Hunnam’s charisma that are the biggest draws. If you go in with measured expectations to have some fun, you’ll enjoy this one when it hits Netflix on Oct. 25.

Begin Again

The Weinstein Company

Everyone loves a good romantic comedy, and “Begin Again” delivers the goods with a musical twist. Written and directed by “Once” and “Sing Street” filmmaker John Carney, the 2013 feature stars Keira Knightley as an aspiring musician who gets discovered by a struggling record label executive (played by Mark Ruffalo). The film is full of original songs and is a love letter to singer-songwriters everywhere. It also boasts supporting turns from the likes of Adam Levine, Hailee Steinfeld, James Cordon, Mos Def and Catherine Keener. The film hits Netflix on Oct. 27.