Netflix is ramping up the amount of movies it has to offer on its streaming service, along with its original shows. There’s no shortage of movies with scenes that fans can pause, rewind, and watch over and over again.
Founded in 1997, Netflix started to take on the market in streaming in 2007. Now streaming services are as popular as ever, and Netflix has announced that it intends to spend billions of dollars on new content. And they’ve already started, with purchases like The Cloverfield Paradox, bought off of Paramount for $50 million. And, of course, they spent millions on the Will Smith starring movie, Bright. On top of that, Netflix has a record for releasing new content on a regular basis and sometimes in surprising ways.
The following list features some great movies to watch on the service, as well as some shocking scenes viewers will want to get a closer look at, if for no other reason than to be horrified and grossed out. Show of hands – who’s ready to binge watch movies until their eyes bleed?
So, all of that aside, here are 20 Shocking Netflix Original Movie Scenes You Need To Pause At. Watch out for some (mostly mild) spoilers.
Okja tells the story of a young girl who grows attached to a super pig manufactured by a corporation that falsely leads people to believe all of their products are natural. It’s an adorable story – and somewhat sad –written and directed by Joon-ho Bong, with great performances by Tilda Swinton, Jake Gyllenhaal, Steven Yeun and Seo-Hyun Ahn. One of the most stand-out scenes is when, in an attempt to escape the corporation that has come back after ten years to reclaim its product, Okja and Mija (Seo-Hyun Ahn) demolish a shopping market in Seoul. After seeing the bond between the two, it’s easy to root for her and the superpig. In their subsequent journey to the United States, the cruelty Okja endures, and the fight Mija has to put up to get back her beloved companion, are quickly revealed.
Based on the novella by Stephen King, and directed by Zak Hilditch (screenplay), 1922 tells the story of Wilfred James (Thomas Jane), a man who decides that it’s in his best interest to do away with his wife, Arlette (Molly Parker). Set just before/during the Great Depression, 1922 is a slow burn that builds into a raging blaze. Initially, it might seem like a kind of lazy story, building itself in significance by being set during a culturally significant time when it could easily be set in the present. But its pacing and insights set it apart as a piece that blends psychological terror, supernatural terror, and a bit of horrifyingly well-placed gore. While one of the most shocking scenes is the murder of the wife, the scene that really needs to be paused at is when Arlette finally reveals the fate of their son Henry (Dylan Schmid). The crispness lends to its terror.
18. SHIMMER LAKE
This is an independent dark comedy about a bank robbery gone wrong. However, everything is revealed from end to beginning. Written and directed by Oren Uziel, who also wrote The Cloverfield Paradox, Shimmer Lake stars Rainn Wilson and Benjamin Walker. Rainn plays Andy Sikes, a not-so-great father who decides to take on a life of crime. Walker is his brother, Zeke, the local sheriff. You find out early on that Andy helped plan a robbery, and everything went wrong from the beginning. Without revealing too much, the scene above occurs early on in the film. This is a scene that viewers should pause at because the tattoo gives a clue as to who’s behind everything – though, to be honest, it’s not that difficult to figure out. But the mystery isn’t really the point. It’s an entertaining movie, creative in its use of reverse chronological order, and worth a watch.
17. DEATH NOTE
Death Note is a live-action version of the popular anime adapted from Tsugumi Ohba’s manga of the same name. Directed by Adam Wingard and written by Charley Parlapanides, Vlas Parlapanides and Jeremy Slater, it follows Light Turner (Nat Wolff) and his Shinigami named Ryuk (Willem Dafoe). Ryuk introduces himself by granting one of Light’s most violent wishes. From then on, Light uses the found Death Note for vengeance for himself and his father (Shea Whigham). He eventually tells his friend/girlfriend Mia (Margaret Qualley). Soon, a detective named L (Lakeith Stanfield) is hot on their trail. Though different from the original anime, the live action Death Note is a truly fun movie, with some stellar performances and great visuals. In the chaotic scene above, Ryuk makes his first shocking appearance. Many fans wondered in the live action visual of Ryuk would live up to expectations, and he most certainly did.
Written and directed by Tony Elliott, ARQ is sort of a science fiction Groundhog Day. Due to a time-looping invention he created, Renton (Robbie Amell) finds himself repeating the same day over and over again, up until the point when he dies during the loop. A group wants to steal his technology, presumably to use it to help people. But with each loop, Renton learns more information and realizes all is not what it seems. With the help of his former girlfriend Hannah (Rachael Turner) he has to find a way to keep the machine out of enemy hands. While most of the movie is set in one location, in the above scene Renton and Hannah venture outside for the first time, revealing the extent of the dystopian world in which they live.
Directed by Hiroyuki Seshita and written by Sadayuki Murai and Tsutomu Nihei (manga), Blame! is a dystopian anime feature set in world where machines hunt humans. With hints of The Terminator, the original Ghost in the Shell and a post Matrix-like world, it blends and blurs the lines between what is human and what is machine. After taking a team to find food, Zuru (Sora Amamiya/Christine Marie Cabanos) and the others run afoul several types of machines that take out a majority of their group. They’re saved by Killy (Takahiro Sakurai/ Kyle McCarley), who, as it turns out, is far different from most humans. He ends up leading them to the place where they can find the food they need. After getting back to their compound with the food, they realize they’ve made a serious mistake. Something has followed them back. The above scene is shocking in its explosive detail.
14. THE OPEN HOUSE
Admittedly, the ending of The Open House can be rather frustrating after the interesting lead up, with somewhat of a mystery left unresolved. But, all-in-all, Open House is a good movie. It’s low-key horror, revealing its final intent in the last horrific minutes of the movie. Similar techniques have been used in the past. Who can forget Hitchcock eliminating Marion Crane (Janet Leigh), the woman who appeared to be the main character in Psycho? In a lot of ways, The Open House really is more of an introduction to a mysterious killer. Starring Dylan Minnette as Logan Wallace, Piercey Dalton as Naomi Wallace, and Sharif Atkins as Chris, this subtle horror film written and directed by Matt Angel and Suzanne Coote is definitely worth the watch. In the shocking scene above, Naomi is tied up in a harrowing confrontation with the faceless murderer.
Time travel and other dimensions — as explored by quantum physics, loop quantum gravity, string theory, etc. – are fascinating subjects often depicted in science fiction. Researchers have explained the possibility of time travel through light refraction, proof of the multiverse, and a myriad of other scientific mysteries now becoming science fact. The Cloverfield Paradox is a somewhat larger example of this interest. Synchronicity by Jacob Gentry is another to add to the list. It’s a well-made movie that tells the story of Jim Beale (Chad McKnight), a physicist who discovers a method of time travel. He needs money to complete his experiment. In the process, he meets a woman who, ultimately, is key to his discovery. However, he doesn’t realize all aspects of his breakthrough or that it involves consequences no one anticipated. In the disturbing scene above, finds himself face-to-face with his lifeless body.
12. BURNING SANDS
Burning Sands by Gerard McMurray and Christine T. Berg is an independent film about the ups and downs of Greek letter (fraternity and sorority) culture. While on one side it shows the friendships that can form between those who choose to pledge, it also shows the dangers of hazing and the pressures of trying to fit in. It’s sort of a “do better” letter of love and concern to a system that, despite any benefits, can be exceedingly harmful. The movie follows Zurich (Trevor Jackson) and his friends as they navigate through life in college and pledge for a fraternity. It shows him dealing with school, his professor (Alfre Woodard) and the school’s dean (Steve Harris), all while trying to have a social life. The above scene is one of the most shocking in the movie. It shows the potential consequences of hazing gone wrong.
11. THE BABYSITTER
Directed by McG and written by Brian Duffield, The Babysitter is a fun, classic slasher with a twist with pop-culture references abound amid a gory horror-fest. Meet Bee (Samara Weaving), super cool babysitter extraordinaire. She handles the bullies, loves old movies, horror, and can name some of the best science fiction characters in history. However, it’s clear early on that there’s something not right about her. After being convinced by his friend Melanie (Emily Alyn Lind) to stay awake and sneak to see what it is the babysitter does after he goes to bed, Cole (Judah Lewis) finds himself in a pretty bad position. He watches as his oh-so-cool babysitter and her friends (Robbie Amell, Hana Mae Lee, Andrew Bachelor and Bella Thorne) sacrifice a hapless partygoer named Samuel (Doug Haley), after she gives him a kiss. What follows is a nearly non-stop, and sometimes morbidly humorous, fight for survival.
10. DEIDRA AND LANEY ROB A TRAIN
Written and directed by Sydney Freeland, Deidra and Laney Rob a Train tells the story of three siblings who have to learn how to fend for themselves after their mom (Danielle Nicolet) loses her mind. In dealing with the realities of trying to stay on top of classes, apply for college, and take care of her younger siblings, Deidra (Ashleigh Murray) decides that her best course of action is to rob the train that runs through their backyard – with the help of her younger sister Laney (Rachel Crow). Their mother left them with no money and a significant amount of bills – including her own bail. After successfully robbing several shipments and going through all sorts of problems, Deidra must come up with a new plan after the guidance counselor, Ms. Spencer (Sasheer Zamata) alerts her to danger. In this pause-worthy scene, Deidra can be seen setting fire to a box of assorted goods. This is her moment of truth, when she realizes she must let go of everything to save what matters to her most.
Netflix has quite a few action-packed science fiction movies to choose from and Spectral is easily one of the best. Directed by Nic Mathieu and written by Ian Fried and Nic Mathieu, Spectral follows a recon team that finds themselves facing down something that scientists can’t explain. Soldiers are going into the region and getting slaughtered by unseen forces. Is it ghosts? Technology? And, of course, the military wants to know if they can harness it. Genius scientist, Clyne (James Badge Dale), is forced to come up with a deadly machine in order to save what’s left of his crew and the civilians. In one of the biggest scenes in the movie, the team puts his new technology to the test against the Spectrals in a fight to the finish. Definitely pause-worthy (and rewind-worthy) if you like cool special effects and big explosions in your sci fi fare.
Directed by Adam Randall and written by Joe Barton and Kevin Brooks (novel), iBoy is a twist on the idea that human beings will someday have chip implants that allow uploading and downloading of information with thoughts alone. Instead of implants, this story takes the time-honored tradition of superpowers through freak accident (or unfortunate incident, in this case). While running away from gang members that are attempting to harm his friend (Maisie Williams), Tom/iBoy (Bill Millner) makes a call to police and is shot. The bullet shatters his cell phone, causing pieces of it to lodge in his brain, and surgery can’t remove all of the fragments. This leads to him having the ability to read people’s screens, search the Internet, control electronic devices, etc., Soon, he finds himself face-to-face with the gang leader (Rory Kinnear) in his area. The battle scene above demonstrates the shocking extent of his abilities.
7. LITTLE EVIL
Written and directed by Eli Craig, Little Evil is a horror comedy about a boy who may or may not be the antichrist. Gary (Adam Scott) is the new man in the picture and, initially, he believes the son (Owen Atlas) of his girlfriend (Evangeline Lilly) simply doesn’t like him. But it’s quickly revealed that there’s more to the story than that. The kid isn’t entirely human. It turns out, his mother used to belong to a nefarious group that worshiped the devil, unbeknownst to her, and she was chosen to carry his next vessel. In the shocking scene above, things go to hell – literally. After he and his friends, lead by Larry (Donald Faison), attempt a rescue, Gary finds himself in quite the predicament – hanging over a pit of hell. For a small/medium budget horror movie, these are some pretty impressive (CGI) pyrotechnics, definitely worthy of appreciation.
6. BOMB SCARED
Directed by Borja Cobeaga and written by Cobeaga and Diego San Jose, Bomb Scared is a Spanish-language movie about a group (Basque ETA terrorists) seemingly trying to plot a big attack as a protest to being under Spanish rule. However, it’s something of a comedy, with the newer members of the team repeatedly negating the reasons given by the older member (Javier Camara) for wanting to go forward. Still, they’re mostly in agreement, despite some tensions. It’s a slower piece, and it has some good performances. The scene above happens only a few minutes into the movie. After appearing just to be a group of family and friends having a meal together, it’s quickly revealed that they’re criminals, and a SWAT team is there to arrest them. Chaos ensues.
5. A MESSAGE FROM THE KING
Directed by Fabrice du Welz and written by Oliver Boseman and Stephen Cornwell, A Message From the King stars Chadwick Boseman as South African native Jacob King, who comes to the United States to find his sister, Bianca (Sibongile Mlambo). What he finds instead is a seedy underbelly of drugs and innocents used in a vile sex trade. He quickly discovers what happened to her, and in his quest for justified revenge he seeks out several people who wouldn’t otherwise appear to be involved in the lifestyle his sister found herself in. There are some disturbingly graphic scenes in this movie. In the above scene, one of the main criminals, Wentworth (Luke Evans) discovers one of his clients has been murdered, and he proceeds to take out the witness.
4. SMALL CRIMES
Written by E. L. Katz, Macon Blair and David Zeltserman (novel), Small Crimes is the tale of a former officer who is released from prison after a brutal attack on the district attorney. Joe Denton’s (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) path to redemption, however, is complicated by the fact that the criminals he had business with are not done with him. So he finds himself in a worse position, trying to deal with those complications while getting his life back on track. Sort of. In the shocking scene above, audiences see the full extent of the physical damage Joe caused Phil (Michael Kinney), the man he went to jail for attacking. While attempting to kill Phil for corrupt Lieutenant Dan Pleasant (Gary Cole), he sees the wounds on Phil’s back, and they resemble lashes from a whip.
3. THE CLOVERFIELD PARADOX
Netflix surprised everyone on Super Bowl Sunday by delivering the third instalment of the popular Cloverfield series. While some reviews are negative, many fans are loving this trippy exploration of space and multiple dimensions. With nods to movies like Evil Dead, Sphere, and Event Horizon, The Cloverfield Paradox explains exactly how the monsters of the first movie came to be. Starring Gugu Mbatha-Raw, directed by Julius Onah, and written by Oren Uziel, it takes the audience on an edge-of-your-seat wild ride. There are plenty of shocking scenes in the movie, but one viewers definitely need to pause at is when a crew member named Volkov (Aksel Hennie) regurgitates the ship’s missing worm supply. This is an “Alice down the rabbit hole” moment, a realization for the crew that things are only going to get weirder and more dangerous as time goes on. It’s shocking and well-done.
While Bright has some questionable moments, there’s still a lot to like about the movie. Directed by David Ayer and starring Will Smith as Daryl Ward and Joel Edgerton as Nick Jakoby, Bright takes the buddy cop story into magical territory. This world deals with magic, elves, and other somewhat supernatural entities – such as orcs. Smith plays a cop forced into a corner by some of his fellow officers who want to discriminate against an orc on the force, Nick Jakoby. Things go south pretty quickly, and after finding a coveted wand at the site of a Bright attack, Daryl’s fellow officers decide to eliminate him and Nick. That doesn’t go very well, and soon enough Daryl and Nick find themselves on the run from the Inferni (rogue elves) and the law. In the above scene, the shocking results of a Bright attack reveal just a piece of how powerful they are.
Directed by Dee Rees, written by Rees and Virgil Williams, and based on the novel by Hillary Jordan, Mudbound has been nominated for several Oscars. Set during and just after WWII, it deals with the hardships of Mississippi farm life during that era, as well as the racism that Black families had to contend with over 50 years after the end of slavery. After coming back from the war, Ronsel (Jason Mitchell) and Jamie (Garrett Hedlund) become close friends due to their shared experiences. While they see each other as equals, the rest of the world does not. Locals attempt to negate Ronsel’s experiences and remind him that in the United States they don’t consider him anything other than the n-word. There are several shocking scenes in this movie, mostly near the end. In the scene above, Ronsel witnesses a devastating attack on his fellow soldiers.
Which of these shocked you most? Let us know!
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