The 30 Best Movies to Watch When You're Bored

From romantic comedies to cult classics, we've got you covered.

Updated 09/30/19

GETTY IMAGES. GRAPHIC BY CRISTINA CIANCI

Rather than aimlessly scrolling through Netflix the next time you're at a loss for what to stream on a Sunday night, take a peek at our queues for some serious watch-list inspiration. Spanning heart-warming romantic comedies, to cult classics everyone should see at least once, and fast-paced thrillers that'll have you on the edge of your seat, here are 30 good movies to watch when you're bored. So go ahead—pour yourself a glass of wine and settle in for the evening.

Here are our picks for the best movies to watch when you're bored.

01 of 30

It's Complicated (2009)

It's Complicated DVD cover art
© Universal

This is a straight-up feel-good film. The plot isn't too complex, but watching Meryl Streep's character deal with her hilariously complicated relationship with her ex-husband, played by Alec Baldwin, is the perfect addition to a lazy weekend afternoon.

Available on: YouTube, Amazon Prime Video

02 of 30

About Time (2013)

About Time Poster
© Universal Pictures

You can watch this movie when you're bored, when you're happy, when you're sad, and just about every emotion in between. The plot will make you realize how wonderful all the parts of your life that tend to go unnoticed really are, and will leave you feeling grateful for even the boring moments.

Available on: Amazon Prime Video, Netflix

03 of 30

13 Going on 30 (2004)

13 Going on 30
Columbia Pictures

A true classic, this heartwarming, nostalgic movie never ceases to entertain. Jennifer Garner is simply adorable as she plays a girl trying to figure out how to be an adult in New York City. Plus it has a perfectly timed 'Thriller' dance sequence, in case you needed another reason to watch this coming-of-age rom-com for the umpteenth time.

Available on: YouTube, Amazon Prime Video

04 of 30

How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days (2003)

How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days

 Paramount Pictures

You've probably seen this movie 10,000 times by now, but it's almost impossible to get tired of. Kate Hudson + Matthew McConaughey = rom-com gold. Plus, we can never resist a movie about the magazine world.

Available on: YouTube, Amazon Prime Video

05 of 30

Lion (2016)

Lion

 IMDb

Warning: You might be completely reduced to tears by the end. It's an incredible real story about an Indian orphan who is adopted by an Australian family, and years later tries to find his mother and brother with only his memories to guide him.

Available on: YouTube, Amazon Prime Video

06 of 30

Minimalism (2016)

Minimalism

 IMDb

This Netflix documentary will change the way you think about shopping and gift-giving—it's a great one to watch during the holiday rush to remind you what's really important.

Available on: Amazon Prime Video, Netflix

07 of 30

Fight Club (1999)

Fight Club

 Fox 2000 Pictures

This movie is a cult classic for a reason. Every time you watch it, you notice something new. It's the perfect 'reset button' for reevaluating your priorities from time to time.

Available on: YouTube, Amazon Prime Video

08 of 30

Midnight in Paris (2011)

Midnight in paris

 Sony Pictures

If you've ever been to Paris or are dreaming of visiting, this film is nothing short of perfection. It'll transport you straight to the charming, quaint streets of Montmarte and have you dreaming of picnics along the Seine.

Available on: YouTube, Amazon Prime Video

09 of 30

Sixteen Candles (1984)

Sixteen Candles

Universal Pictures

 

John Hughes's classics are go-tos whenever we're looking for a feel-good pick-me-up. You can never go wrong with this coming-of-age 80's flick.

Available on: YouTube, Amazon Prime Video

10 of 30

Oldboy (2003)

Oldboy
Oldboy. © FilmDistrict

Park Chan-wook is one of the most talented directors of our time. This chilling thriller is an excellent introduction to his work.

Available on: Amazon Prime Video

11 of 30

Sour Grapes (2017)

Sour Grapes

 Netflix

This American crime documentary on counterfeit wines might blow your mind. It follows the investigation of one mad scientist/wine savant type who was investigated after reportedly making over $35 million after selling rare counterfeit wines at high-end auctions in a single year. It's oddly fascinating.

Available on: Amazon Prime Video, Netflix

12 of 30

The Big Sick (2017)

The Big Sick

 Amazon Studios

The Big Sick is what all rom-coms should be: heartwarming and touching, but also realistic and intelligent. The movie follows the real-life love affair of comedian Kumail Nanjiani and Emily Gordon—along with all the challenges of modern love and cross-cultural differences many millennials face today. 

Available on: YouTube, Amazon Prime Video

13 of 30

Sleeping With Other People (2015)

Sleeping With Other People

Gloria Sanchez Productions 

If you gravitate towards quirky comedies, you'll love Sleeping With Other People. It stars some of our favorite comedians, (Alison Brie, Jason Sudeikis, Adam Scott, and Amanda Peet), and it's definitely worth a watch.

Available on: Amazon Prime Video, Netflix

14 of 30

Obvious Child (2014)

Obvious Child movie poster
Photo courtesy A24

Leave it to Jenny Slate to strike the perfect balance of humor and heart when tackling a tough topic like abortion. This quirky romantic comedy is an unexpected twist on the genre.

Available on: Amazon Prime Video

15 of 30

Hot Rod (2007)

Hot Rod DVD
Hot Rod on DVD. © Paramount

This slapstick comedy stars Andy Samberg of Saturday Night Live and Brooklyn 99. The scene where Samberg's character gallops into a wooded glen and punch-dances out his rage (à la Kevin Bacon in Footloose) gets us every time.

Available on: YouTube, Amazon Prime Video,

16 of 30

Funny Face (1957)

Audrey-Hepburn-white-pants-Funny-Face-1956-Bud-Fraker-John-Kobal-Foundation-Getty-Images.jpg
Bud Fraker/John Kobal Foundation/Getty Images

When in doubt, watching Fred Astaire and Audrey Hepburn sing and dance in Paris is an immediate pick-me-up for any dull afternoon. Fall into a 1950's musical comedy for laughs and plenty of inspiring dance moves.

Available on: YouTube, Amazon Prime Video

17 of 30

Almost Famous (2000)

almost famous dvd
"Almost Famous" DVD. Amazon.com

You'll love Almost Famous for the soundtrack, set design, and fashion. The relationship dynamics across the board are also really entertaining and, for the most part, heartwarming.

Available on: YouTube, Amazon Prime Video

18 of 30

The Killing of a Sacred Deer (2017)

The Killing of a Sacred Deer

Film4

There's no way you can possibly be bored while watching The Killing of a Sacred Deer, just make sure you're down for a truly unsettling film. And once it's over, you'll research it for hours. It's very mood-driven, intellectual, strange, quirky, and—rest assured—beyond disturbing.

Available on: YouTube, Amazon Prime Video

19 of 30

Frances Ha (2013)

Frances Ha

 RT Pictures

Frances Ha is a great movie to watch when you want something emotionally moving, but light-hearted and funny. It's about being a young woman and the way we weave in and out of friendship love. Many quotable moments, as to be expected from Greta Gerwig.

Available on: Amazon Prime Video, Netflix

20 of 30

Beasts of the Southern Wild (2012)

Beats of the Southern Wild

Cinereach

Beasts of the Southern Wild is so beautiful and unique, we can't think of anything else quite like it. It's one of those movies that you'll remember forever, but you probably won't be able to get through it without shedding a tear.

Available on: YouTube, Amazon Prime Video

21 of 30

Memento (2000)

Momento

 IMDb

When you want to watch something super engaging and suspenseful, pick Memento. It's told in reverse, so you really need to pay attention to know what's going on (in a good way).

Available on: YouTube, Amazon Prime Video

22 of 30

The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants (2005)

The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants

 IMDb

Lighthearted and fun to watch, The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants is a coming-of-age movie that emphasizes the strength of female friendship, especially during those tricky teenage years. It also might make you miss the good ol' days when a three-month summer break was a thing.

Available on: Amazon Prime Video, Netflix

23 of 30

The Graduate (1967)

the graduate film dvd
"The Graduate" DVD cover. Amazon.com

A young Dustin Hoffman floating in his Pasadena pool—that opening scene is so iconic that we can't think of anything that can top it. Between the melancholic Simon & Garfunkel score, iconic love affair, and resonant post-college mood, it's hard to pick just one reason we love The Graduate. Though it's innocent and playful, it still has a fun "forbidden love" angle that's fun to watch unfold. There's also plenty of room for laughter and delight.

Available on: Amazon Prime Video, Netflix

24 of 30

Rushmore (1998)

Rushmore
Photo courtesy of PriceGrabber

Wes Anderson fanatics, this dramedy is for you. It's set at a prep school and focuses on the relationship between two men who both try to woo a first-grade teacher. Aside from the hilarious, quirky humor, Rushmore is as stylistically and aesthetically delightful as you'd expect from Anderson.

Available on: Amazon Prime Video, YouTube

25 of 30

Julie & Julia (2009)

Julie & Julia
Columbia Pictures. Columbia Pictures

This feel good film stars Amy Adams as Julie Powell, a woman who is committed to cooking the entirety of Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking in a year. As she does so, the movie flashes back in time to the making of the famed cookbook, with Meryl Streep playing Child. It's filled with beautiful shots of delectable food, stunning scenes of midcentury Paris, and an ongoing message of determination to meet two shared goals. 

Available on: Netflix

26 of 30

Mamma Mia (2008)

Mamma Mia
Universal Pictures

Can you ever go wrong with this shamelessly happy film? Meryl Streep and Amanda Seyfried are perfection. Plus, there's catchy ABBA songs, dance sequences, and Greek scenery. Watch this movie if you're looking for a feel-good escape.

Available on: Netflix

27 of 30

Coco (2017)

Coco

 Disney Pixar

A Pixar is always a failsafe choice when you're bored, and we particularly love this one. The story centers around the revered Mexican holiday El Día de los Muertos, and a boy named Miguel who is trapped in the land of the dead when he decides to become a musician against his family's wishes. The colorful 3D scenery is just one thing that will put a smile on your face.

Available on: Netflix

28 of 30

Now and Then (1995)

Now and Then

 TVGuide

Your favorite 90's film has finally come to Netflix, and it's just as good as you remember it. The coming of age film is a hefty dose of nostalgia as four girlfriends recall a past summer they spent together in 1970. Get ready for the best of seventies music, fashion, and décor.

Available on: Netflix

29 of 30

Eat Pray Love (2010)

Eat, Pray, Love

©Columbia Pictures/Courtesy Everett Collection

There's plenty to laugh about in this Julia Roberts movie, in addition to major food and travel envy, but the real-life tale will also stir up your emotions. It's a movie about finding yourself, spirituality, and love, set in Rome, India, and Bali.

Available on: Netflix

30 of 30

Something's Gotta Give (2003)

Something's Gotta Give
Columbia Pictures

If you don't know what to watch when you're bored, go for a Nancy Meyers film. This one stars Diane Keaton and Jack Nicholson, and you can expect plenty of romance, laughs, and design envy.

Available on: Netflix

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