Netflix Movies Based on True Stories That Should Be In Your Watchlist

Netflix offers us a wide range of movies to watch. From romance and comedy to sci-fi, action, and horror, Netflix has catered to all our needs. There is still one genre of movies that remains less explored owing to its factual and usually boring nature. Biopics and biographies are often overlooked because of how boring they can get if not narrated well. What if we tell you that Netflix hoards an array of movies based on real life stories and events that are different from conventional biopics, that give you an in-depth understanding of an event in an entertaining and fun way? To make your work easier, we are here with a list of 15 Netflix movies based on true stories that will help you know the world a little better than you did yesterday.

Also read: 15 Best Bollywood Movies Based On True Stories

1. American Made

American Made is a thrilling biopic of Barry Seal, a TWA pilot turned secret agent for the CIA who used to run for the Medellin Cartel in South America. The movie has it all drugs, arms and ammunition, fighter planes, steamy sex scenes and whatnot. Moreover, the casting of the movie is perfect with our very own Maverick- Tom Cruise as the main lead Barry Seal. The crime drama is a perfect watch for Narcos and Breaking Bad fans.

2. The Boy Who Harnessed The Wind

This movie is a perfect example of the adage “Where there is a will there is a way”. It follows the story of a Malawian boy named William Kamkwamba who saves his entire community from a drought at just 14 years of age. Belonging to a poor family, William had to withdraw from school but that did not stop him from learning. He spent days at the library where a book called Using Energy introduced him to the genius of windmills. With meager means and a lot of hope and ambition, William saved his entire village, thus transforming millions of lives. The movie is a directorial debut of Oscar-nominated actor Chiwetel Ejiofor and is one of the best Netflix movies based on true stories.


3. The Social Network 

If you are an avid social media user, this is something you would want to watch. The movie deals with the onset of social media with the launch of Facebook and traces the journey of its creator Mark Zuckerberg. Facebook, as we know it today, did not come out of a single process. The story behind the creation of Facebook is that of creative genius, friendship, betrayal and greed and the movie has depicted each of these concepts with sheer perfection. Directed by David Fincher and starring Jessie Eisenberg, Andrew Garfield and Justin Timberlake, the movie is considered to be a directorial masterpiece with spectacular cinematography. It is a classic among IT students.

4. Catch Me If You Can 

Starring Leonardo Di Caprio and Tom Hanks, Catch Me If You Can is a comedy-drama that tells the story of famous conman Frank Abagnale who at the ripe age of 21 manages to extort around 2.5 million dollars. It follows an FBI agent’s obsession to catch this infamous conman who has troubled the lives of Americans. Leonardo Di Caprio’s charm works in perfect sync with his role as a con man and Tom Hank as the obsessed FBI agent is just perfect. The movie has been directed and produced by famous director Steven Spielberg and is considered to be one of his finest works.

5. Unbroken 

The movie follows the tragic story of American Olympian Louis Zamperini. From being an Olympic record-holding runner to ending up as a prisoner of war, the movie follows his story that unravels during the second world war. It is a heart-touching story directed by Angelina Jolie that contains a detailed account of the runner’s tragic fate and how he still remained unbroken.

6. Coach Carter 

Coach Carter is an inspiring movie that takes us along on the journey of Ken Carter, a real-life coach at Richmond High School who sets out to transform the high school’s basketball team. Having been a top athlete during his own time, Coach Carter deals with disappointment on seeing the team member’s attitude towards the sport. The movie guarantees a lesson on discipline and sportsmanship that no one should miss.


7. To The Bone 

Eating  Disorders are an area that most filmmakers are afraid to tread due to the stigma that it carries with them. To the Bone director, Marti Noxon tries to break away from the trend and brings to the big screen her own experiences with recovering from Anorexia Nervosa. It is a heartfelt movie that highlights the problems one goes through while dealing with an eating disorder, what causes it, and how fatal it could be if not treated properly. Starring Lilly Collins and Keanu Reeves as the main leads the movie was approved by several ED patients.

8. Moneyball 

Starring Brad Pitt, Jonah Hill and Chris Pratt, Moneyball is a sports drama narrating the story of how data-driven decision-making changed the game of baseball forever. It is the story of Billy Beane a baseball manager who along with his friend Peter Brand creates a sports team using computer-based methods. The movie rightfully depicts the struggles of tough competition faced by underdogs and their subsequent rise to power. It is a must-watch Netflix movie based on a true story.

9.  Brain on Fire 

Brain on Fire is the story of a New York Post journalist Susan Cahalan and her struggle with mysterious symptoms of an autoimmune disease. The movie follows the journalist as she deals with a series of misdiagnoses and treatments to help her with her violent seizures only for them to get worse. The movie perfectly depicts the story of a simple diagnosis of a medical problem that can help someone figure their life out. It’s a heart-touching movie and is widely appreciated for Chloe Grace Moretz’s performance as the main lead.

10. First they killed my father

Directed by Angelina Jolie, First They Killed My Father is a multilingual movie featuring the violent takeover of the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia. It narrates the tales of the harsh reality that several Cambodians had to face and particularly shows the story of Luong Ung trained as a child soldier and her family that is sent to a labor camp. The movie is based on the novel of the same name written by her. The visuals of the movie will make your heart melt.

11. The Trial Of The Chicago 7

Set in the 1960s, The Trial of The Chicago 7 deals with the real life trial of 8 anti-Vietnam war activists who were framed for conspiring against the federal government. The movie revolves around the dramatic courtroom trials of the 7 accused. While the movie spanning 130 minutes could only include parts of the entire trial, the entire trial which went on for 5 months is said to have been more dramatic and controversial! The director Aron Sorkin who is also known for The Social Network is said to have outdone himself with this film.

12. The Siege Of Jadotville

The Siege of Jadotville is an Irish movie starring Jamie Dornan, Mark Strong, and Connor Mac Neil. It is a historical period drama that revolves around the Congo Crisis of 1961 when Irish Troops were sent over to maintain peace. It narrates the story of the tough fight between the Katagnese force and the Irish troops. It is a story of tough resistance which is wonderfully portrayed by the actors and the directors. The story is widely appreciated for its realism and factual accuracy while also maintaining its entertainment.

13. The swimmers

The swimmers is an inspiring story of champion swimmer sisters Yusra and Sara Mardini. Originally from Syria, it follows them as they flee from the war torn country and swim across the Mediterranean Sea to reach Greece. They then go on to compete in the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio De Janeiro under the Refugee Olympics Athletes Team. The movie sends a strong message that no matter what the circumstances are a person can always achieve new heights.

14. The Blind Side 

The story follows Leigh Anne Tucker and Sean Touhy who take in a homeless Black teenager named Michael Oher and help him overcome his difficulties. They soon discover Michael’s excellence in football and support him in making his career choices. The movie shows how a little support and love can make the brightest futures. The movie is heart-touching and emotional and is a must watch movie based on a true story.

15. Operation Finale 

The Holocaust continues to be one of the most horrifying reminders of the second world war. While Adolf Hitler is mostly considered to be responsible for the terrifying event, there is another man who was actually behind bringing Hitler’s plan to reality. Adolf Eichmann, a Nazi officer was responsible for the transportation logistics that brought millions of Jews to death. Operation Finale is a historical thriller that deals with the tracking down of this war criminal by top secret Israeli agents who seek to avenge the genocide of their community. The movie is highly engrossing and ideal for those who are interested in geopolitics and Cold War.

These Netflix movies based on true stories along with being informational are also entertaining. Each movie has a unique takeaway that keeps the content ingrained in the viewer’s mind for a really long time. These Netflix movies based on true stories and events are critically acclaimed and have won several accolades for exceptional screenplay and direction- something which is very hard to master when it comes to biopics.

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