If you’re a Peacock subscriber or considering signing up, it’s probably fair to ask whether it brings the goods. Subscription fatigue is very real, and as more companies launch their own streaming sites, you’ll want to know their libraries are worth the cost. The movies on Peacock are a great place to start.
As studios branch off into factions, each with their own dedicated streaming sites, most of what you’ll find on Peacock comes from parent company NBCUniversal (which is owned by Comcast). But you’ll see that a few titles licensed from elsewhere also appear throughout this list.
And it’s a big list. While we kept this pared down to 20 titles, with something for everyone, Peacock has a lot more to offer. The streamer hasn’t really made a huge name for itself yet next to behemoths like Netflix and Disney Plus, but that’s not for lack of library titles. Peacock is a contender.
So, without further ado, and in no particular order, here are the 20 best movies on Peacock right now. Sign up below if you’re hoping to queue one of these up tonight.
The best movies on Peacock
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
It’s been almost 20 years since writer Charlie Kaufman and director Michel Gondry teamed up on offbeat sci-fi romance Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.
When Clementine (Kate Winslet) falls out of love with Joel (Jim Carrey), she decides to undergo an experimental procedure to erase him from her memories. Shocked and hurt, Joel decides the only way to get over the “breakup” is to do the same. He erases Clementine from his own memories. What follows is a non-linear journey through his subconscious. Joel tries to hold onto bits and pieces of their relationship before they’re gone forever.
Kaufman, Gondry, and co-story writer Pierre Bismuth took home an Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay for their efforts. The award was well deserved, and the film remains a classic worth watching.
Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans
This unorthodox “remake” of the 1992 Abel Ferrara cult classic felt like a career reset for Nicolas Cage. Playing the titular bad lieutenant, Cage is a drug and gambling-addicted detective trying to solve the murder of Senegalese immigrants in post-Hurricane Katrina New Orleans.
Director Werner Herzog’s sense of excess perfectly suits Cage’s off-the-rails portrayal in this deeply thoughtful neo-noir that bears virtually no similarities to its own source material.
Short Term 12
No film has launched more exciting careers than Short Term 12. From Oscar winners Brie Larson and Rami Malek and 2021 nominee LaKeith Stanfield, to Brooklyn Nine-Nine’s Stephanie Beatriz, to rising star Kaitlyn Dever, to Tony winner John Gallagher Jr., the film is stacked with some of today’s most talented actors.
But more than that, it’s a smart and touching coming-of-age drama. Set in a group home for troubled teens, Short Term 12 follows residents and employees working on getting by one day at a time. It tells its story with empathy and a gritty sense of realism and honesty, with stellar performances, making it an obvious choice as one of the best movies on Peacock.
Space exploration films have been pretty consistently solid in the last few years. Gravity, Interstellar, First Man, and Ad Astra are all terrific.
But 1995’s Apollo 13 remains a staple and a high point of the genre. Depicting the near-disastrous real-life Apollo 13 mission that followed the moon landing, the film chronicles the first attempt to return to the lunar surface. When something goes wrong in orbit, NASA has to quickly find a way to safely get its astronauts back to Earth. It’s a near-impossible mission.
Anchored by incredible performances, top-notch direction by Ron Howard, and a story almost too wild to believe, Apollo 13 is a testament to human ingenuity in the face of hardship and truly among the best movies on Peacock.
They don’t make ’em like they used to. Or, well, except when they do. John Wick felt like a breath of fresh air when it came out in 2014. No overdone CGI. No chaotic editing. No convoluted backstory. A simple action setup gets things moving quickly when a retired assassin goes after the home invaders who killed his dog, a gift from his deceased wife. From there, balletic fight choreography and great performances make John Wick a modern classic of action cinema, with stellar sequels to boot.
Get your Jack Black fix in this wickedly funny dark comedy from director Richard Linklater.
Reality certainly can be stranger than fiction, as in this story, inspired by true events. A beloved small-town assistant mortician befriends an elderly, very wealthy widow, and then murders her, making excuses for her absence for months before her body is discovered. What should be an open-and-shut case gets complicated when the town rallies behind the friendly killer, making national news.
State of Play
Despite some tepid reviews and low box office earnings, State of Play is a solid thriller, with an all-star cast giving top-notch performances.
Based on a hit British TV show, State of Play follows a journalist investigating the suspicious death of a congressional aid. Things get sticky when the investigation leads to a Congressman, his old friend and college roommate. This smart, intense thriller is one of the best films you’ll find on Peacock.
Lost in Translation
Four years after her terrific debut, The Virgin Suicides, Sofia Coppola made Lost in Translation, the Oscar-nominated drama that remains one of her best-known and beloved films.
A young woman in Tokyo with her photographer husband wanders aimlessly. She develops an odd friendship with an older man — an actor effectively selling out and having a mid-life crisis about it. Scarlett Johansson gives one of the best performances alongside a low-key, thoughtful turn by funnyman Bill Murray in this meditation on professional aspirations and human connections.
Canadian cult auteur David Cronenberg is at the top of his game in Dead Ringers. His psychosexual thriller is as perverse as it is enthralling.
Jeremy Irons plays two disturbingly co-dependent gynecologist twin brothers who run a successful practice. One has a bad habit of seducing patients and passing them on to his brother when he tires of them. Their relationship begins to fall apart, and their careers are threatened when the two compete for the same woman’s affections and begin engaging in questionable surgical practices.
Wet Hot American Summer
If you’re looking to laugh, you’ll be hard-pressed to top Wet Hot American Summer. Tapping into the absurdist humor of the 00s, it’s a silly look at the last day at summer camp, as counselors and campers alike try to fit in as many good times as they can before going home.
If you want the follow-up series Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp and Wet Hot American Summer: Ten Years Later, you’ll have to go to Netflix. The mega streamer took on the sequel shows in 2015 and 2017. But for the original film, you can still get your fix from Peacock.
Steven Soderbergh has become one of the very best chroniclers of American working-class life over the years. 2000 was an outstanding year for him. Both Erin Brockovich and Traffic released to great reviews and Oscar nominations for best picture. (How many directors can boast two best picture nominees in one year?)
In Erin Brockovich, we follow the titular Brockovich, played by Julia Roberts. She’s an unemployed single mom who becomes a legal assistant to take on a major power company that’s polluting a California city’s water supply. Based on a true story, the film is a powerful indictment of inequality and corruption. It’s a rousing anthem to standing up for the little guy and one of the best movies on Peacock.
After a job gone wrong, two Irish hitmen have to lay low in the charming city of Bruges, Belgium, as their ill-tempered boss plans what to do next.
The odd-couple dynamic of the two career criminals works perfectly to make this a dark comedy worth checking out. Brendan Gleeson is the positive thinking Ken, who’s happy for the impromptu holiday. Colin Farrell is the cynical Ray who wants nothing more than to leave this storybook nightmare.
Between great performances, gritty action, and charming sights in the quaint tourist town, In Bruges is a crowd-pleaser with something to appeal to most viewers.
Children of Men
If dystopian futures are your thing, it’s hard to do better than Children of Men. Mixing reproductive rights, population health, refugee rights, and government overreach, Alfonso Cuarón’s sci-fi drama is a remarkable and grim portrait of humanity.
In the future, human infertility has led to an aging and shrinking population. A civil servant agrees to help an asylum seeker escape persecution. But the possibility of a new generation of children adds a dash of hope to the struggle.
Joss Whedon’s Fox series Firefly is still remembered as a show that was unjustly canceled after one season nearly 20 years on.
But in 2005, just three years after Firefly’s cancellation, fans got a rare treat. The series was finished up in a feature film: Serenity. The film follows the crew of smugglers aboard the Firefly-class spaceship Serenity. Determined to protect a young woman in their care from an oppressive central galactic government, the space pirates set out to figure out what they did to leave her with special, almost supernatural abilities.
While Whedon himself hasn’t aged very well, Serenity remains a terrific cult classic of science fiction. And it’s one of the best movies on Peacock.
Social satire doesn’t come any blunter — or brilliant! — than John Carpenter’s 1988 cult classic They Live.
What if an invasive alien species was secretly ruling the world, only we had no way of knowing it. That’s the premise of this sci-fi thriller. With the help of a special pair of sunglasses, one man sees through the lies and subliminal messages of our materialistic society. He discovers we’ve all been tricked into complacency and made easier to rule by our oppressors. And he does something about it.
Spike Lee keeps you guessing in this taut thriller when a standard bank robbery turns into a messy hostage situation.
As police try to handle what’s going on, things get messier and messier in a game of cat and mouse where the stakes aren’t always clear, and no one can keep their stories straight.
A polarizing movie that manages to be both progressive and conservative in its treatment of gender and sexuality, 1983’s Sleepaway Camp had a huge influence on the horror genre.
When shy young Angela heads off to Camp Arawak one summer, death follows her. Fellow campers and counselors drop dead all around. The film delves into Angela’s past to reveal all kinds of trauma and repression. This all leads to a shocking finale that begs us to question who we label as monsters and why.
Sleepaway Camp is fun, weird, and dark, making it one of the best movies on Peacock, and you’ll likely have just as much fun digging through the thoughtful critiques and essays that have been written about it ever since it came out.
Bring It On
Bring It On was an absolute highlight of millennial teen cinema. Spawning some inferior sequels, the original stands the test of time as a certified classic. It’s fun, smart, and funny, and it tackled cultural appropriation long before the term became mainstream.
When the new cheerleading captain of an affluent, all-white cheerleading team finds out her predecessor was stealing routines from a predominantly Black inner-city school, she has a crisis of faith. Determined to win honestly, she has to devise entirely new routines and whip her team into shape fast.
The granddaddy of all slasher films is here, and it’s one of the best movies on Peacock.
See the low-budget Canadian indie that launched a genre. Black Christmas even pioneered the “the call is coming from inside the house” trope. It’s almost Christmas, and a deranged killer with a creepy habit of making calls to his victims terrorizes a sorority.
It’s no wonder Black Christmas has been remade twice since its release — four years before 1978’s Halloween. But there’s nothing quite like the original.
Land of the Dead
George A. Romero’s later films never got a lot of love. Certainly not compared to his earlier classics like Night of the Living Dead and Dawn of the Dead. But maybe a few are worth a revisit.
Land of the Dead received mixed reviews when it came out in 2005. But it still speaks to the social inequities of our times remarkably well.
Following the zombie apocalypse, humans fight to survive in a small compound community. They’re mostly protected from the fiends at the gate but subject to the whims of the rich elite. Their leaders hunker down in their high rises and hoard wealth and comfort. It may feel a touch on the nose as we continue to grapple with COVID-19 affecting poor neighborhoods in higher numbers, but that certainly speaks to the film’s relevance.
Those are our picks of the best movies on Peacock. If you haven’t already subscribed, click below to watch any one of these gems tonight!