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The best 4K Netflix movies and shows

Our pick for picture perfect Netflix viewing.

The best 4K Netflix movies and shows
Jon Mundy
12 June 2023

If you're going to spend two hours or more watching a film, it might as well be at the best possible quality, right? 4K or "no way."

Netflix itself does not clearly label whether content is 4K or not. Some movies and shows are available in 4K, others are limited to 1080p, or worse in a few cases. You can search for "4K" in the app itself to see some suggestions. But we've dug through the library to pick out some 4K Netflix TV shows and movies we think you should not miss.

Bear in mind you will need a Netflix Premium membership to watch 4K content. Lower tiers max out at 1080p, and the Basic plan is even more limited, capped at 720p.

Press play on one of the following 4K movies and TV shows, and you can guarantee a visual treat that uses every spare pixel of your UHD TV. Don’t forget to vote for your picks...

Best 4K Netflix movies and shows

Best 4K Netflix movies and shows

1. The Witcher - UK/US

No list of visually lavish movies and TV shows is complete without a good slice of fantasy, where CGI and costume budgets can be let loose. Thankfully, Netflix has one ready to order in The Witcher. Henry Cavill plays the titular monster hunter, who must hack and slash (not to mention grimace) through foul beasts and political intrigue alike.

Image Credit: Netflix

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Best 4K Netflix movies and shows

2. The Umbrella Academy - UK/US

Despite being due to commence its fifth and final season, this visually ambitious comic book adaptation still somehow seems to fly under the mainstream radar. The Umbrella Academy has a unique hyper-stylised look that does wonderful things with light and shade, interspersed with stabs of bold colour. Naturally, it all looks even better in 4K.

Image Credit: Netflix

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Best 4K Netflix movies and shows

3. The Sandman - UK/US

This adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s seminal ’80s/’90s fantasy-horror comic was weirdly overlooked during the 2022 awards season. No matter. Stare deep into the inky eyes of the god-like personification of Dream, played by Tom Sturridge and rendered in spectacular 4K, and thank your lucky stars that you upgraded your TV set relatively recently.

Image Credit: Netflix

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4. Looper - UK Only

Before he got involved with ill-received - but we think excellent - Star Wars sequels and the breezily brilliant Knives Out films, Rian Johnson made this rip-roaring sci-fi time travel action thriller. You simply haven’t lived until you’ve seen the shine of Bruce Willis’s impeccable bonce rendered in full Ultra High Definition.

Image Credit: Sony Pictures Releasing

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Best 4K Netflix movies and shows

5. Better Call Saul - UK/US

Now that it’s wrapped up its final season, we can reflect upon what made Better Call Saul so good. Besides its impeccable writing, wicked sense of humour, and faultless performances, this Breaking Bad side-story of sorts is notable for its cinematic approach and its ceaseless use of inventive camera angles. It’s a 4K production through and through.

Image Credit: Netflix

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6. Dark - UK/US

This German sci-fi mystery series is a real brain-scrambler, as the residents of a sleepy village are forced to contend with missing children, time-travelling killers, and parallel universes. There’s a lot to take in, so it’s a good job you can simply switch off your brain and look at the beautifully stylish cinematography in full 4K.

Image Credit: Netflix

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7. Our Planet - UK/US

In the UK, the BBC’s Planet Earth series was one of the leading champions of 4K TV broadcasting. Our Planet is from the same team, and features a similar mixture of stunning scenery and beautiful wildlife, all captured in microscopic detail by a fleet of top-grade 4K cameras.

Image Credit: Netflix

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8. Annihilation - UK Only

This smart sci-fi movie is as visually arresting as it is mysterious. A biologist is sent to investigate the shimmer, a phenomenon that causes mutations in plant and animal life. And it's expanding. The film was a box office flop, but is well worth a watch if you like your sci-fi to have some thought behind it. Directed by Alex Garland, who made Ex Machina and wrote 28 Days Later.

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9. The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance - UK/US

Sadly abandoned after a single season, this televisual prequel to ’80s cult classic fantasy movie The Dark Crystal wears its extravagant budget and painstaking production techniques on its little puppety sleeves. Needless to say, you owe it to yourself to watch it in full 4K. They quite literally don’t make them like this any more.

Image Credit: Netflix

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10. Glass Onion - UK/US

OK, the original Knives Out is arguably a better film than its follow-up Glass Onion. However, if you also care about a movie that can make the most of a 4K presentation, pick this sequel. Daniel Craig's Benoit Blanc is roped in to investigate another mystery. But this time it's set on the luxury private island of a tech billionaire.

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11. Cyberpunk: Edgerunners - UK/US

The benefits of 4K aren’t exclusive to live action film and TV. That bump up in resolution also benefits animated content, especially when that content is as packed full of detail and sheer artistry as Cyberpunk: Edgerunners. It might be a spin-off from a popular video game, but Edgerunners earns its place on this list with its strikingly rendered vision of a sci-fi dystopia.

Image Credit: Netflix

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12. All Quiet on the Western Front - UK/US

This brilliant war film won both a BAFTA and Oscar for its cinematography, and Netflix's 4K feed is the best way to experience it outside of a 4K Blu-ray. It's a harrowing depiction of the First World War, seen through the eyes of an idealistic young German soldier. He joins the war effort in a patriotic fervour, only to be quickly introduced to the real horrors of war.

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13. Uncut Gems - UK/US

The Safdie brothers have essentially served up a two-hour heart attack in Uncut Gems, with its relentless pace and insistent Oneohtrix Point Never soundtrack accompanying a brilliantly edgy performance by Adam Sandler. Through all the stress and the kinetic action, however, the film’s kaleidoscopic cinematography really pops on a good 4K TV.

Image Credit: Netflix

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14. Formula One: Drive to Survive - UK/US

One of the key drivers of 4K adoption in the early years was sport. Nothing demonstrates the advantages of packing more pixels on display like a fast-moving ball or, in the case of Formula One, car. Drive to Survive tracks the twists and turns across several F1 seasons, with all the on-and-off track drama captured in crisp UHD.

Image Credit: Netflix

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15. The Irishman - UK/US

The Irishman sees one of the finest living film directors making a three-and-a-half hour crime epic exclusively for Netflix. We couldn’t NOT include it in this list. Martin Scorsese’s film is a typically virtuosic wedge of film-making, with strong performances and some uncannily good de-aging effects that really need to be seen in a higher resolution.

Image Credit: Netflix

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16. Roma - UK/US

4K is great for rendering fast-paced action and vivid colour, but Roma has neither of those things. This wonderful slice-of-life drama from Alfonso Cuaron is rendered in starkly beautiful black and white, but with none of the usual accompanying grain it somehow takes on a look that’s akin to classic street photography. Beautiful.

Image Credit: Netflix

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17. Chef’s Table - UK/US

4K isn’t just about making space ships, supernatural beings, and movie stars look good. It has also proved transformational for food shows, as evidenced by Chef’s Table. The term ‘food porn’ is a deeply icky one, but the way this impeccably shot series renders the food made by real life culinary stars certainly verges on the indecent.

Image Credit: Netflix

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Note: We have added whether you can find these movies on Netflix in the US and UK. Please check your region for availability.
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