Greetings, Polygon readers!
We’ve successfully made it through yet another spooktacular season of delightful frights and chilling thrills. Regular thrills, however, are perennial, which means we have a whole new list of recommendations for audiences looking for a great movie to keep them on their toes this month.
This month’s top picks include the latest film from director David Fincher and starring Michael Fassbender, an extravagant Bollywood blockbuster that’s best summed up as “Robin Hood meets Charlie’s Angels,” and a gripping psychological thriller courtesy of Yorgos Lanthimos, the cerebral filmmaker behind 2015’s The Lobster and the upcoming Poor Things. Here’s our list of the best thrillers to watch on Netflix in November.
Editor’s pick: The Killer
Director: David Fincher
Cast: Michael Fassbender, Arliss Howard, Charles Parnell
Netflix’s newest thriller is also already one of his best. David Fincher’s The Killer, released this week, is one of The Social Network director’s best movies and easily the most fun you’ll have with an assassin all year.
The Killer follows a character simply known as the killer, played excellently by Michael Fassbender. He’s mechanical and methodical, and his inner monologue, which Fassbender delivers with a tremendous deadpan, is hilariously detached and full of incredible non sequiturs. We see the character go through the careful planning of a hit, only for it to go wrong and set off a chain reaction of revenge, murder, fistfights, and Amazon orders.
The Killer is Fincher at his most refined, a casual exercise in moviemaking excellence that’s more stylish in its quietest scenes than most directors could ever dream of at their most flamboyant. The Killer has all the efficiency of a high-class assassin, and still knows better than to take itself too seriously. Fincher’s highly technical precision is so refined here that it feels effortless, flipping between tense-as-hell action, coldblooded murder, and slapstick comedy without even blinking. —Austen Goslin
Cast: Shah Rukh Khan, Nayanthara, Vijay Sethupathi
Superstar Shah Rukh Khan’s latest blockbuster covers everything you’d want from cinematic spectacle. If “Robin Hood meets Charlie’s Angels” sounds like a good time to you, this is The Movie you have to watch this weekend.
On its surface a compelling revenge story, Jawan also features elements of romance movies, musicals, action thrillers, and message films, all cohering into one of the most fun movie events of the year. The action scenes are kinetic and hit hard, the romance is deeply felt, and the movie leans on SRK’s charisma even more than his spy blockbuster Pathaan. All of this culminated into a huge hit: Jawan is the biggest Indian movie of the year at the box office, and the second-biggest Hindi movie ever released. Watch it on the biggest screen you own and bask in a great time. —Pete Volk
The Killing of a Sacred Deer
Director: Yorgos Lanthimos
Cast: Colin Farrell, Nicole Kidman, Barry Keoghan
We’re less than a month out from the premiere of Poor Things, the latest black comedy from director Yorgos Lanthimos, starring Emma Stone. In a twist on Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, the film follows a young, naive woman who embarks on a journey of self-discovery and sexual liberation after being resurrected by a mad scientist.
If you’ve never seen a Lanthimos movie before and want to acclimate yourself to his particular brand of surrealist storytelling, The Killing of a Sacred Deer is as good a place as any to start. Colin Farrell stars as Steven, a heart surgeon with a loving family and a successful career. Things appear more or less normal from the outside, with one notable exception: His abnormal relationship to Martin (Barry Keoghan), a menacing teenager whose father was a former patient of Steven’s. The mystery behind what exactly is going on between these two is the driving force for much of the film’s first half.
If the title didn’t already give it away, The Killing of a Sacred Deer is a weird movie, filled with bizarrely stilted line deliveries, inexplicable gore, and a truly shocking final act. For those reasons and more, it’s well worth a watch. —Toussaint Egan