clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile
Noomi Rapace wears a military uniform and look straight ahead in Black Crab. Her face is bruised and cut. Photo: Jonas Alarik/Netflix

Filed under:

The 5 best thrillers to watch on Netflix this November

Some adrenaline to warm you up this chilly autumn

We’re caught right between horror movie season and holiday movie season, so why not watch a great thriller this November? Netflix has an extensive selection of great thrillers to watch, but the curation team at Polygon has highlighted five examples that we feel are a great fit for this month.

What makes a great November thriller? We’ve got movies here that fit the chilly weather, some new releases (including a new sequel to a great action thriller), and movies that just flat out rock.

Here are some thrilling suggestions for your November viewing pleasure.


Synchronic

Lights flash across the surface of Anthony Mackie’s face as he lies down for a brain scan. Image: Well Go USA Entertainment

Year: 2019
Run time: 1h 36m
Directors: Justin Benson, Aaron Moorhead
Cast: Anthony Mackie, Jamie Dornan

Holy heck, how is it November already?! You ever feel like you’ve come unstuck in time, wavering from one moment to the next in a liminal state of prolonged exhaustion, bewilderment, and confusion? That’s certainly how Anthony Mackie’s character feels in the 2019 sci-fi horror thriller by co-directors Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead (Something in the Dirt, Moon Knight). The film follows Steve (Mackie) and Dennis (Jamie Dornan), two longtime friends and paramedics working in New Orleans who while working encounter a strange new designer drug with reality-warping properties. If you’re looking for an eerie movie that trips the light fantastic across time and space, Synchronic is the perfect choice. —Toussaint Egan

Black Crab

Noomi Rapace holding a rifle in Black Crab. Image: Johan Bergmark / Netflix

Year: 2022
Run time: 1h 56m
Director: Adam Berg
Cast: Noomi Rapace, Dar Salim, Jakob Oftebro

As the weather gets cooler and cooler, why not put on something seasonally appropriate? You could go for a Christmas movie, or you could go for this action thriller … on ice.

A Swedish action thriller set in a war-torn world, Black Crab follows Caroline Edh (Noomi Rapace), a former speed skater who has been drafted into becoming a soldier after the abduction of her daughter. She’s recruited on a secret mission using her special set of skills – skating across the ice-covered Stockholm Archipelago in secret under the cover of night in a covert operation, with the promise of reuniting with her daughter on the other hand.

Black Crab is nothing fancy – it’s a by-the-book thriller that knows what it is, and doesn’t spend too much time trying to explain the war itself (a great choice because it literally does not matter). Instead, it delivers on its gimmicky setup – Action Movie On Ice! And with a capable genre lead in Rapace leading the way, it’s a breezy 114 minutes of frozen fun. —Pete Volk

State of Play

Rachel McAdams and Russel Crowe in State of Play, looking at each other next to some computers. Images of Bill Clinton and Ronald Reagan appear in the background. Image: Universal Pictures

Year: 2009
Run time: 2h 8m
Director: Kevin Macdonald
Cast: Russell Crowe, Rachel McAdams, Ben Affleck

Director Kevin Macdonald’s 2009 political thriller stars Russell Crowe and Rachel McAdams as Cal McAffrey and Della Fyre, two investigative journalists from two very different generations who work together to uncover a conspiracy involving the death of an aide to Stephen Collins (Affleck), a U.S. Congressman and McAffrey’s close friend. Aside from being a tense and cooly calibrated movie powered by a pair of terrific lead performances, it also opens on a rainy night in Georgetown, Washington D.C. with a young man stalked by a ruthless briefcase-toting assassin. If that’s not enough to get you in the mood for the holidays, I don’t know what will. —TE

The Lost Bullet movies

Alban Lenoir as Lino peeling around a corner in his red muscle car in Lost Bullet. Image: Netflix

Year: 2020 for Lost Bullet, 2022 for Lost Bullet 2
Run time: 1h 32m for Lost Bullet, 1h 38m for Lost Bullet 2
Director: Guillaume Pierret
Cast: Alban Lenoir

The Lost Bullet movies are kinetic experiences, with high-octane car chases, hard-thumping fist fights, and plenty of bullets and explosions to go around. Add in a uniquely compelling lead in former stunt man Alban Lenoir, and you have two stellar crime thrillers from Guillaume Pierrot.

The first movie is a straightforward crime thriller, following a man in a bad situation trying to exonerate himself from a crime he did not commit. It’s a tense, fast-moving movie with a simple premise executed to perfection. The second movie complicates the narrative, with considerably more moving parts, but it also ups the ante when it comes to the action. —PV

The Stranger

(L-R) A bearded man (Joel Edgerton) with sunglasses on his head stands across and stares sternly at another bearded man (Sean Harris) in a hoodie. Image: Netflix

Year: 2022
Run time: 1h 57m
Director: Thomas M. Wright
Cast: Joel Edgerton, Sean Harris

Thomas M. Wright’s latest crime thriller isn’t just one of the best thrillers on streaming this month, but also one of the best thrillers to watch this season. Don’t believe me? Get a load of those verdant forests and mountainscapes in the film’s opening, the spectral lighting of the bus ride Henry Teague meets the suspiciously affable Paul Emery on while en-route to West Australia. Aside from being a film as taut and precarious as a tightrope, The Stranger is a terrifically shot film that will have you yearning to vacation to see Australia to get away from the frigid winter. —TE

What to Watch

The best movies leaving Netflix, Hulu, Prime, and HBO Max at the end of November 2022

What to Watch

The best movies on Netflix right now

What to Watch

Movies actually improved by watching while full of Thanksgiving turkey and wine

View all stories in What to Watch

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for Patch Notes

A weekly roundup of the best things from Polygon