Few nights in Hollywood’s calendar year come close to the glitz and glamor of the Academy Awards. An Oscar statuette is a crowning achievement for anyone involved in the production of film, and those who garner one or more of the gold figurines win the right to label themselves “Academy Award–winning” for the rest of history. Plus, there’s the career boost that comes with it. 

With the terrifically entertaining 96th Academy Awards behind us, let’s look back at some of the more memorable past winners in various categories, or at least the ones that are currently streaming on Netflix (in no particular order).

Here are the best Oscar-winning movies now streaming on Netflix.

1. My Octopus Teacher

A scuba diver swims next to a small octopus.

Credit: Netflix

Won: Best Documentary Feature 

My Octopus Teacher may have a title that’ll raise some eyebrows, but there’s a more profound story of unexpected friendship waiting to surprise you. The documentary follows Craig Foster, a free diver who befriends a young octopus living in a bay near Cape Town, South Africa. We watch this young octopus grow fond of Foster as she plays around with him and invites him into her world. It’s a gripping story of our relationship with nature and the lessons waiting to be learned from our many beautiful animal friends. — Yasmeen Hamadeh, Entertainment Intern 

How to watch: My Octopus Teacher is streaming on Netflix.

2. Roma

A family hug on the beach.

Credit: Carlos Somonte / Netflix

Won: Best Director, Best Foreign Language Film, Best Cinematography

Alfonso Cuarón’s Oscar-winning drama follows Cleo (Yalitza Aparicio), a housekeeper working for a wealthy family in Mexico City. Thanks to Cuarón’s writing, direction, and cinematography (each of which garnered its own respective Oscar), the film is remarkably immersive, enveloping us in Cleo’s world in a way most movies strive for and can never even touch. We feel the comfort in her mundane day-to-day, the sting of her boyfriend’s betrayal, and blinding panic and trauma in the film’s final act. It’s a stunning piece of cinema that should be talked about for decades to come. — Proma Khosla, Entertainment Reporter

How to watch: Roma is streaming on Netflix.

3. American Factory

Men wearing blue work in a factory.

Credit: Aubrey Keith / Netflix

Won: Best Documentary Feature

This 2020 Best Documentary Feature winner takes viewers inside a shuttered General Motors factory in Ohio, recently purchased and re-staffed by a Chinese billionaire, for a stunning look at worker exploitation in the modern age. A complex presentation of multiculturalism and its impacts on the global economy, American Factory is an uncomfortable watch that remains steadfastly objective from start to end but still manages to make its point. — Alison Foreman, Entertainment Reporter

How to watch: American Factory is streaming on Netflix.

4. Marriage Story

A woman sitting on the floor. A man sitting on the couch holding a trumpet.

Credit: Wilson Webb / Netflix

Won: Best Supporting Actress (Laura Dern)

Writer/director Noah Baumbach’s tense tale of a couple ending their marriage divided audiences, with some viewers reporting they were surprised by whose “side” they ended up on. But critical reception for the film was almost universal in its praise of the story’s execution and impact, with leads Scarlett Johansson and Adam Driver singled out for their magnetic scene work.

At the 92nd Academy Awards, Marriage Story took home only one Oscar from the six categories in which it was nominated. Still, this artful depiction of intimacy remains a triumph of romantic storytelling, venturing far beyond the Happily Ever After audiences know so well. — A.F.

How to watch: Marriage Story is streaming on Netflix.

5. Darkest Hour

An old woman hugs her husband.

Credit: Focus Features

Won: Best Makeup and Hairstyling, Best Actor (Gary Oldman)

Set in the early years of World War II, Darkest Hour follows Winston Churchill (remarkably played by Gary Oldman) as he navigates Britain’s position in the ensuing war, along with the trials and tribulations that follow. On Oldman’s Oscar–winning performance, Mashable’s Angie Han writes, “Oldman knows the difference between packaging and performance… There’s a living, breathing soul underneath all that makeup, at the center of all those tics, and Oldman makes him fascinating to watch.” So come for a masterclass in acting by Oldman, and stay for the gripping story that follows; it’s worth the watch. — Y.H. 

How to watch: Darkest Hour is streaming on Netflix.

6. The Imitation Game

A man in a suit sits at a desk in an office.

Credit: Screenshot Netflix

Won: Best Adapted Screenplay

This historical drama offers one of Benedict Cumberbatch’s best performances. Based on the biography Alan Turing: The Enigma, by Andrew Hodges, The Imitation Game dramatizes the life of the British mathematician as he helps Britain’s government decrypt German intelligence messages. The task is near-impossible, however, Turing (Cumberbatch) proves to be the man of the hour, but not without a series of tribulations. The drama has been praised for its raw portrayal of mental health and the harsh realities of being queer in the mid-20th century, but it’s also been critiqued for some historical inaccuracy. It remains a stunning work of gripping drama nonetheless. Rather than expecting a history lesson, enjoy The Imitation Game‘s masterclass in acting provided by a star-studded cast that includes Charles Dance, Keira Knightley, and Mark Strong. — Y.H. 

How to watch: The Imitation Game is streaming on Netflix.

7. Everything Everywhere All At Once

Michelle Yeoh in "Everything Everywhere All at Once."

Credit: A24

Won: Best Picture, Best Original Screenplay, Best Director (Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert), Best Actress (Michelle Yeoh), Best Supporting Actress (Jamie Lee Curtis), Best Supporting Actor (Ke Huy Quan), Best Editing

About as subtle as a heart attack, the Daniels’ beloved 2022 multiverse masterwork Everything Everywhere All At Once inexplicably manages to be simultaneously epic and intimate, serious and goofy, sweet and obscene – it’s everything to everyone all at once, basically. 

Nominally telling the story of a mother (Michelle Yeoh) and a daughter (Stephanie Hsu) who can’t figure out how to relate to one another, their movie stretches itself across infinite time and space and bagels to desperately seek beauty out of unhinged mayhem. And it feels like the entirety of our madhouse moment distilled into 140 minutes. So let’s do laundry and taxes and Netflix and chill. — Jason Adams, Contributing Writer

How to watch: Everything Everywhere All At Once is now streaming on Netflix.

8. The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar

Won: Best Live Action Short Film

In 2023, Wes Anderson directed a series of short films based on Roald Dahl stories for Netflix. It was the longest and most substantial of the four that finally got the director his long-overdue Oscar statue. (Let’s pretend it’s an apology for the crime that was not giving his 2023 masterpiece Asteroid City a single nomination.) The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar (taken from the 1977 collection of short stories with the same name) tells the tale of a disaffected gambler (Benedict Cumberbatch) who learns how to harness the power of his mind from a legendary yogi (Ben Kingsley) to win big. But what happens once you have everything? This 39-minute short hits that final mark beautifully. 

If you love Anderson’s signature aesthetic, you’d be wise to watch all four of the ones Netflix commissioned. They’re all wonderful. (My particular favorite is The Rat Catcher, which more than any of the other four really nails Dahl’s nasty streak as we watch an hilariously aggressive Ralph Fiennes as a sharp-toothed rodent-hunter on the prowl.) — J.A.

How to watch: The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar is now streaming on Netflix.

9. Jurassic Park

Won: Best Sound, Best Sound Effects Editing, Best Visual Effects

Forget six million years ago — it was 1993 when dinosaurs really ruled the Earth, thanks to Steven Spielberg’s legendary summer blockbuster. An adaptation of Michael Crichton’s hit novel about scientists cloning the extinct creatures all in the name of a fun theme park for the kiddos, Jurassic Park shows what happens when innovation outpaces reason. Or, as Jeff Goldblum’s iconic leather-clad chaotician Ian Malcolm puts it succinctly, “Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could, that they didn’t stop to think if they should.” (Take heed, AI creators.)

Naturally, all hell breaks loose, as it’s been breaking loose in every Jurassic sequel since. But none quite compare to what Spielberg & Co. did a full 30-plus years back. Goldblum, Sam Neill, and Laura Dern delivered charisma alongside sexual tension and science chatter to enchanting effect. The special effects are a perfect mixture of animatronics by the legendary Stan Winston with newfangled computer generated imagery crafted by the fine folks at Industrial Light & Magic. They still hold up today. Honestly, they look better than the full CG ones in half of the sequels. I have watched the T-Rex attack those kids in that Explorer a thousand times, and I hold my breath every dang time. — J.A.

How to watch: Jurassic Park is now streaming on Netflix.

10. Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio

Gepetto (voiced by David Bradley) and Pinocchio (voiced by Gregory Mann) in "Guillermo del Toro's Pinocchio."

Credit: Netflix

Won: Best Animated Feature

You know when hitting play on this movie that the fantastic horror visionary Guillermo del Toro isn’t going to be telling Walt Disney’s version of Pinocchio. Meaning no offense to that 1940 animated masterpiece, but del Toro took that classic’s scattered-about scary moments – the donkeys, oh god, the donkeys! – and multiplied them by infinity. 

Setting the story of the little wooden boy who gets wished to life by his depressed carver Geppetto in WWII-era fascist Italy, del Toro slathers his version of the fairy tale in politics and righteously disturbing anti-war propaganda. And that’s before he violently kills off our main character multiple times. Featuring voice acting by Ewan McGregor, Tilda Swinton, Cate Blanchett, and Christoph Waltz, plus revelatory stop-motion work from the animators at ShadowMachine, Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio is like no other. — J.A.

How to watch: Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio is now streaming on Netflix.

11. L.A. Confidential

Won: Best Supporting Actress (Kim Basinger), Best Adapted Screenplay

This 1997 film from the deeply underrated director Curtis Hanson was a big hit at the Oscars, getting nominated for nine awards total. An adaptation of James Ellroy’s 1990 crime novel, L.A. Confidential is basically about the war between some good cops and some bad cops in 1953 Los Angeles. Guy Pearce, Russell Crowe, Kevin Spacey, and James Cromwell all take to the suits and fedoras and hard-boiled dialogue extremely well. And Hanson provides a rock-solid foundation for Ellroy’s intriguing dark mystery to play out upon. But it’s Kim Basinger, playing a sex worker whose resemblance to Veronica Lake is her great blessing and curse, who steals the movie. And it was Basinger who walked away with its only acting statue. 

This movie would make for an ace double feature with Chinatown, though – a lovely night of L.A.-set neo-noirs showcasing the myriad ways that the Hollywood machine can grind people up in its gears. What a town! — J.A.

How to watch: L.A. Confidential is now streaming on Netflix.

12. Whiplash

Miles Teller and J.K. Simmons in "Whiplash."

Credit: Sony Pictures Classics

Won: Best Supporting Actor (J.K. Simmons), Best Editing, Best Sound

When he was just 29 years old, writer/director Damien Chazelle’s second feature film, 2014’s Whiplash, took Sundance by storm. By the time he was 30, he had snagged himself a Best Adapted Screenplay nom, along with a slew of other honors for the adrenaline-fueled indie. Thank goodness he didn’t let all of that early success go straight to his head and blow all his movie-making capital on a great big vanity project next! (He waited, making two more movies and winning a Best Director Oscar for La La Land before bestowing upon us the toxic epic that is Babylon.) 

Still, it’s easy to see why everybody fell for Whiplash, a ferocious music school tale where we watch an overly determined drumming prodigy (Miles Teller) meet his match in an abusive teacher (J.K. Simmons). Asking questions about the dangerous lengths we’re tempted to go to be the best, the film was ahead of its time in taking a hard look at the excuses we make for the sake of so-called genius. — J.A.

How to watch: Whiplash is now streaming on Netflix.

13. Joker

Won: Best Actor (Joaquin Phoenix), Best Score

It’s weird that it took a comic book movie to finally win Joaquin Phoenix Best Actor, right? With all the out-there choices with heralded directors he’s made in his career, it was the role of the dancing clown supervillain — one that had already won a different actor an Oscar, at that! — that finally got our Phoenix over the finish line. 

Todd Phillips’ 2019 film Joker went all out with its stabbing at seriousness, wallowing in the seediest corners of the comic book canon in order to prove its cinematic bonafides. This certainly ain’t Cesar Romero. An origin story that sees a rage-fueled stand-up comic give in to his barely buried bloodlust after a relentless series of humiliations, Joker is misery porn slathered and smeared in technicolor make-up. But Joaquin Phoenix sure makes it dance. — J.A. 

How to watch: Joker is now streaming on Netflix.

14. Mank

Amanda Seyfried as Marion Davies and Gary Oldman as Herman Mankiewicz in "Mank."

Credit: Netflix

Won: Best Production Design, Best Cinematography

Director David Fincher’s father Jack had a decades-long obsession with the story of the making of Orson Welles’ masterpiece Citizen Kane. Specifically, he was fascinated by screenwriter Herman J. Mankiewicz (aka Mank) and how much credit he deserved for the final product, given the well-known fact that Mank was a fall-down drunk. And so Jack wrote a film script about the story, hoping he and his son could make the movie together. But the project languished and Jack passed away in 2003, never seeing it realized. 

David Fincher stayed determined though. In 2020 he finally delivered a film starring Gary Oldman as Mank that feels unlike almost anything else the Social Network director has done. Awash in nostalgia and a hard-fought sincerity, you can feel Fincher’s love for his father thrumming through the movie — most especially in the ways the film itself side-eyes a creator’s ability to twist truth into fiction. Amanda Seyfried, wonderful in the role of real-life actress Marion Davies, sees straight through to how Mank can spin truth into fiction with one clack of his typewriter key, and gives the movie its tremulous heart. — J.A. 

How to watch: Mank is now streaming on Netflix.

15. Erin Brockovich

Won: Best Actress (Julia Roberts)

Julia Roberts put her superpowered movie stardom to its best use yet (ever?) with Steven Soderbergh’s legal thriller Erin Brockovitch. Here, our beloved Pretty Woman tackled a brash real-life role and knocked it out of the park. 

This Silkwood-esque dramatization of the true story follows a paralegal who uncovered a conspiracy involving a gas and electric company that had been poisoning the residents of a small town for decades. Erin Brockovitch is Soderbergh working at his mainstream best. It’s a total stand-up-and-cheer, bring-down-dastardly-Goliath kinda movie, and Roberts’ megawatt magnetism — plus an ace script from Susannah Grant — carries us through the darker aspects of it with wit and charm and heart to spare. It’s a win in every aspect. — J.A. 

How to watch: Erin Brockovich is now streaming on Netflix.

16. The Power of the Dog

Benedict Cumberbatch and Kodi Smit-McPhee in "The Power of the Dog."

Credit: Netflix

Won: Best Director (Jane Campion)

Adapted from Thomas Savage’s 1967 novel, The Power of the Dog sees Benedict Cumberbatch slip his twisted beanpole self into a pair of dirty dungarees as Phil Burbank, a deeply closeted cowboy in 1925 Montana at the tail end of the time for such ranch-haunting relics. One day in town, Phil’s brother George (Jesse Plemons) finds himself a wife named Rose (Kirsten Dunst), and Phil does not like that one bit! Once Rose and her weirdo son Peter (Kodi Smit-McPhee) move in with the brothers, it’s a war of the wills, and only one queer cowpoke’s gonna be left standing. A psychotic marvel of a movie that only Jane Campion could’ve delivered. — J.A.

How to watch: The Power of the Dog is now streaming on Netflix.

17. RRR

Won: Best Song

A Tollywood spectacle like they’re only capable of making, this three-hour-plus epic from director S.S. Rajamouli tells the 1920s-set story of the best buddies Bheem (N. T. Rama Rao Jr.) and Raja (Ram Charan), who end up on opposite sides of the revolution against the British Raj. Will they fight? Will they make up? Will they sing and dance? Absolutely. 

All of these questions, many tigers, and much, much more make RRR‘s three hours an absolute breeze. A truly over-the-top spectacle of action and romance and several musical sequences, it was the latter which got the Academy’s attention, with the unforgettable dance number “Naatu Naatu” stomping all its rivals out of the way for the little gold man statue in the end. — J.A.

How to watch: RRR is now streaming on Netflix.

18. The Sting

Won: Best Picture, Best Director (George Roy Hill), Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Art Direction, Best Costume Design, Best Editing, Best Score

Four years after Paul Newman and Robert Redford Thelma-and-Louise‘d themselves off that cliff together in Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, the prettiest American movie stars of their generation (give or take a Warren Beatty) reunited with their director George Roy Hill for another good time in snug pants with The Sting. And the Academy went absolutely bonkers for it, nominating the film for ten Oscars and ultimately giving it seven of them. Among the three losers that night was Robert Redford, who would win one in a few years for Best Director of Ordinary People, and who’d get an Honorary in 2002. But, fun fact, this remains his only acting nomination to date.

In The Sting, Redford plays Johnny Hooker, a gambling grifter on the lam who teams up with another one of his kind by the name of Henry Gondorff (Newman) in order to run an elaborate series of cons on a dangerous mob boss (Robert Shaw). And if any of that sounds dark, it plays as anything but. The Sting is light as air, a star-powered charm machine. Think of an Ocean’s film set during the Great Depression and you’ll get the gist of it. — J.A. 

How to watch: The Sting is now streaming on Netflix.

19. Minari

Steven Yeun, Youn Yuh-jung, Han Ye-ri, Alan Kim, and Noel Kate Cho in "Minari."

Credit: A24

Won: Best Supporting Actress (Youn Yuh-jung)

Staring at the “American Dream” from a perspective somewhat askance — a view we’re given far too infrequently — writer/director Lee Isaac Chung based Minari story loosely on his own childhood growing up in rural Arkansas in the 1980s. Steven Yeun plays Jacob, a South Korean immigrant, husband, and father of two who picks his family up from their comfortable life in California and plunks them down in the middle of Arkansas. Jacob has a dream of working the land, becoming a farmer, and uncovering an American market for Korean vegetables that hasn’t been tapped. He just hasn’t thought through all of the details yet.

His wife Monica (Han Ye-ri) tries to be supportive, while their kids Anne (Noel Kate Cho) and David (Alan Kim) feel mostly bewildered by the big change. Everybody agrees they need some help once they get there though, and so in comes Monica’s colorful mother Soonja (Youn Yuh-jung) from the homeland, which causes its own wave of assimilation trials. Extraordinarily moving and intimate, with a gorgeous, Oscar-nominated score from composer Emile Mosseri, Minari is one of the great family dramas of our time. — J.A.

How to watch: Minari is now streaming on Netflix.

20. Phantom Thread

Won: Best Costume Design

Early on in the filmmaking process, very serious artists writer/director Paul Thomas Anderson and actor Daniel Day-Lewis were trying to figure out a name for the lead character in their next collaboration. Naturally, their text thread led to a dick joke that, in turn, birthed the moniker “Reynolds Woodcock.”

That movie became Phantom Thread, a darkly hilarious romance about a stuffy fashion designer who meets his match in a blushing waitress (Vicky Krieps). There’s something perfect about it all being built on a dick joke. Phantom Thread is ultimately a satire of male domination, and an ode to the armies of women who’ve trussed up the egos of pampered men and gotten the jobs done in spite of them. 

Pulling their female lead out of nowhere (aka Luxembourg), Anderson gave a role for the ages to the relative newcomer Krieps, who goes toe to toe with the greatest actor of his generation. And, much like Alma the blushing waitress does to Reynolds, she shows DDL how it’s done. Incredibly, while both Day-Lewis and Lesley Manville, who played Reynolds’ deliciously stern sister Cyril, got nods — Krieps was snubbed. It’s a crime, considering the effortless way she steals the entire movie away from them all with just her Mona Lisa smile and a basket of suspicious mushrooms. — J.A. 

How to watch: Phantom Thread is now streaming on Netflix.

21. Out of Africa

Won: Best Picture, Best Director (Sydney Pollack), Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Cinematography, Best Art Direction, Best Sound, Best Score

One of those enormous ’80s epics that came to typify the idea of Oscar bait, Sydney Pollack’s Out of Africa now seems the type of movie that Hollywood is, sadly, no longer particularly interested in making. It’s a film about ideas and characters and adults, ones that takes its time with beautiful stars like Meryl Streep and Robert Redford and seemingly bottomless budgets. All this makes their exploits as grand as they should seem coming from the Dream Factory — we didn’t know how good we had it!

An adaptation of an autobiography by the Danish writer Isak Dinesen (aka Karen Blixen), Out of Africa tells Blixen’s story of being married off to a Swedish baron living in Kenya (then known as British East Africa) in 1913. Karen (Streep) slowly begins a love affair with the land itself, as well as with a big game hunter who dwells on that land, played by Redford. If you can deal with some of the dated perspectives being at the romance’s heart — colonialism, white savior narratives, and big game hunting, just to name a few — this is some of Streep’s loveliest work. Pollock and his DP David Watkin shoot the land spectacularly. — J.A.

How to watch: Out of Africa is now streaming on Netflix.

22. King Kong (2005)

Won: Best Sound Editing, Best Sound Mixing, Best Visual Effects

Like Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio, King Kong was a lifelong dream project for Lord of the Rings helmer Peter Jackson. And like Pinocchio, this passion shows in every overstuffed minute. Over three hours long, Jackson’s film drips with love and ambition, as well as with a desire to take the genius of Merian C. Cooper’s 1933 classic and update every square inch of it to the best of 2005’s abilities. 

All these years later, some of the seams do show in the special effects, but there are no seams in its heartfelt retelling or wonderful performances. Naomi Watts as Ann Darrow, the starlet who screams and screams and screams her way from Skull Island to the top of the Empire State Building, gives what might still be the greatest performance opposite an entirely CG screen partner. Andy Serkis gives it right back as the great ape with a heart too big for this small world full of small men. — J.A.  

How to watch: King Kong is now streaming on Netflix.

23. All Quiet on the Western Front (2022)

Felix Kammerer in "All Quiet on the Western Front."

Credit: Reiner Bajo / Netflix

Won: Best International Feature, Best Score, Best Cinematography, Best Production Design

This is one of the rare instances where a remake of a classic film ended up being a terrific idea. The original 1930 All Quiet on the Western Front was one of the very first Best Picture winners, and it remains great to this day. So, how did they make a remake work? It was a pretty simple idea, actually. Director Edward Berger took the original story, which drops audiences down in the dirt with the German soldiers during World War I, and he filmed it in Germany with German actors. Wild, right? 

Still, the 90-year update on film techniques also helped in situating viewers in the middle of that maelstrom. Taking a page from Sam Mendes’ 1917, Berger and his DP James Friend really make us feel like we’re right there in the trenches, dodging the bullets and bombs as often as they hit their deadly mark. The anti-war message of the original comes through loud and clear, bolstered by the unforgettable drone of Volker Bertelmann’s score. The baton-pass nature of the script, which introduces character after character only to see them get ground up in the horrible machinery of war, is a correctly unsubtle hammering home of combat’s cruel dehumanization. — J.A. 

How to watch: All Quiet on the Western Front is now streaming on Netflix.

24. The Great Gatsby (2013)

Won: Best Costume Design, Best Production Design

Leonardo DiCaprio is Jay Gatsby, the mysterious self-made millionaire who’s seized ahold of the 1920s society pages of the New York set through sheer force of will (not to mention much tossing of money). Tobey Maguire is Nick Carraway, a down-on-his-luck writer who gets pulled under Gatsby’s spell. And there’s Joel Edgerton as an old-money prick with tight hair and tighter jodhpurs named Tom. And Carey Mulligan as Tom’s wife Daisy, the dapper flapper somehow at the center of it all. And is that Elizabeth Debicki swanning around as a sumptuous female golfer? 

Baz Luhrmann’s filmmaking choices, as well as the script co-written with frequent collaborator Craig Pearce, blast away the more subtle beauties of writer F. Scott Fitzgerald’s prose. However, Luhrmann has proven to be an inspired and prescient choice for the helm. If there’s one thing we’ve become familiar with since Gatsby was released in 2013, it’s the vulgar melodrama of a con man forcing his way into power far beyond his control for entirely selfish reasons, and all of the destruction that such an act leaves in its wake. — J.A.

How to watch: The Great Gatsby is now streaming on Netflix.

Asterisks (*) indicate the entry has been modified from a previous Mashable list.

UPDATE: Apr. 2, 2024, 4:52 p.m. EDT This list has been updated to reflect Netflix’s current selection.

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