20 Best Movies to Learn Spanish on Netflix

Watching movies may seem like a purely entertaining activity, but it can also be a great tool to learn a language. If you’re a film lover and you’re looking to expand your Spanish vocabulary or sharpen your listening skills, watching a movie might be the best way to do it. Therefore, in this article I’ve gathered the best 20 movies to learn Spanish on Netflix.

Many people think learning a language is only possible by going to class, reading grammar books or memorizing rules. However, there are more fun ways to do it. So, can you learn Spanish by watching movies?

It is possible to improve your Spanish by watching movies. Focusing and engaging in the dialogues can make movies a powerful tool to learn and improve in any language. You can practice your listening skills, learn new vocabulary and even accents through movies, since the visuals and the plot make new knowledge more memorable.

Okay, I know what you may be thinking: in theory it’s easy to say that I can learn a language through movies, but how can I learn Spanish while watching Netflix?

  • Watch a movie you’re interested in: If you watch something that you think is boring, the knowledge will not stick to you. However, if you find a movie that talks about one of your passions or something you’re really interested in, you’re more likely to remember new learnings.
  • Repeat: You can practice your listening and speaking skills by repeating scenes. Doing this can help you internalize the vocabulary and pronunciation. 
  • Don’t rely on the captions all the time: If you’re on an intermediate Spanish level, challenging yourself to understand short segments of a movie without subtitles can help you develop your comprehension skills.
  • Use this tool: Language Reactor is a Google extension that adds dual language subtitles, a pop-up dictionary, and many other features when watching films and series on Netflix. This is great for beginner students since it allows them to read Spanish and subtitles in their mother tongue at the same time. 

So, without further ado, this here’s a list of the best Spanish movies on Netflix.

1. No se aceptan devoluciones – Instructions not included

Type of Spanish: Mexican

In this Mexican comedy, a man finds out he has a daughter when her mother leaves her in his care one day. In an attempt to return the baby to her mother, he goes to Los Angeles, where he discovers the struggles and joy of being a father.

Given that this movie involves the relationship between a Mexican man and an American woman, several lines are in English. So, if you’re feeling confident, it can be an excellent opportunity to stop reading the captions and focus on the dialogue, since the English parts can help you understand the context.

2. Ya no estoy aquí – I’m no longer here

Type of Spanish: Mexican

Ya no estoy aquí is a Mexican drama that narrates the story of a young man that belongs to a very peculiar urban culture originated in the city of Monterrey. This movie portrays the struggles of living in a harsh environment.

Since urban culture is the focus of this movie, the characters speak in slang most of the time. If you already have an advanced level of Spanish and would like to learn authentic Mexican slang, this movie is a great option.

3. El faro de las orcas – The lighthouse of the orcas

Type of Spanish: Argentinian and Castilian

This movie tells the story of a woman who travels from Spain to Patagonia in the hopes of helping her autistic son through the help of Beto, a man with a special relationship with wild Orcas.

The lighthouse of the orcas has Argentinian and Spanish characters, so maybe it could help you notice the differences between accents.

4. Toc Toc

Type of Spanish: Castilian

If you’re in the mood for funny Spanish movies on Netflix, you could give this Spanish comedy a try. Toc Toc’s main theme is obsessive-compulsive disorder, and it follows a group of OCD patients who are gathered in a psychologist’s waiting room. Since the doctor is delayed, the group must wait together while trying to deal with each other’s obsessions and rituals.

Although this movie isn’t heavy on medical terms, it can help you learn some vocabulary related to the field of psychology.

5. Roma

Type of Spanish: Mexican

This movie won three Oscars and multiple other awards, so it’s probably one of the best Spanish movies on Netflix. Roma takes place in the neighborhood of Roma, in Mexico city and it tells the story of an indigenous maid who works for a family of six. This movie touches on the difficulties of the main character’s life and the political climate of the 70s.

This movie also contains a lot of informal Mexican vocabulary that can be helpful in casual conversations.

6. La leyenda de la llorona

Type of Spanish: Mexican

Perhaps you’re already familiar with the story of ‘La Llorona’. If not, this animated movie illustrates the famous story with a little twist. La leyenda de la llorona is about the ghost of a woman who weeps with the guilt of having drowned her own children. In this movie, a group of kids try to stop her.

Children’s movies can be a great resource since the vocabulary is simpler than other genres. Additionally, you’ll be able to apply most of the words you learn since children’s movies use a basic vocabulary that Spanish speakers should know.

So based on this, you could actually watch any children’s film dubbed to Spanish.

7. El olvido que seremos

Type of Spanish: Colombian

El olvido que seremos is a Colombian film that features the country’s political and social life during the 80s and 90s. Within this context and through the lens of his son, we get to know the story of Héctor Abad Gómez, a college professor who fought in favor of human rights in his country.

Given the plot of the movie, the characters often use terms related to politics and social issues, which can be a very valuable addition to your vocabulary.

8. El agente topo – A mole agent

Type of Spanish: Chilean

Do you prefer documentaries? If that’s the case, you could watch the critically acclaimed Chilean documentary A mole agent. In this film, a private investigation company trains eighty-three-year-old Sergio Chamy to become a secret agent in order to find out if abuses are being committed in a nursing home.

The Chilean accent can be hard to understand. However, El agente topo uses fairly simple vocabulary, so, with the help of captions it can be a good option for intermediate learners.

9. Machuca

Type of Spanish: Chilean

Machuca is a story about friendship. In the city of Santiago, eleven-year-old Gonzalo Infante and his new classmate Pedro Machuca become friends despite the differences in their social and economic backgrounds.

If you already have an advanced level of Spanish and want to focus on Chilean Spanish, this movie will provide you with a lot of popular terms that people from that country use on a daily basis.

10. Nadie sabe que estoy aquí – Nobody knows I’m here

Type of Spanish: Chilean

Through this movie we get to know Memo Garrido, an extremely introverted man who lives with his uncle on a farm. Nadie sabe que estoy aquí shows us how he deals with the past trauma of being a child singer and how he finally starts to open up to a new friend.

This movie tends to have very short dialogues, which can make the understanding of the conversations among characters a little easier. However, the accent can be a bit tricky, so it may be more fitting for intermediate or advanced learners.

11. El cuaderno de Tomy – Notes for my son

Type of Spanish: Argentinian

This heartwarming film tells the struggles of a woman who is diagnosed with terminal cancer. To make her four-year-old son remember her, she starts to write a book for him. In the meantime, she gets viral by sharing her story through twitter and as a result, her case is covered by the media.

El cuaderno de Tomy is a good option for intermediate learners, since the vocabulary is not hard or very specific.

12. Historia de lo oculto – History of the occult

Type of Spanish: Argentinian

If you’re into spooky stuff, one of the suspenseful Spanish movies on Netflix you could watch is Historia de lo oculto. This thriller, set in the 80s, is about a journalist that, along with other guests, accuses the government of having ties with an obscurantist sect on the famous tv show ‘60 minutes’.

13. Gente que viene y bah – In family I trust

Type of Spanish: Castilian

In this Spanish romantic comedy, the main character, Bea, finds out her boyfriend cheated on her and, as if things weren’t bad enough, she’s fired from her job. To escape her misery, she decides to return to her hometown, where new things await.

If you’re interested in Castilian Spanish, this movie could help you get a grasp of the accent.

14.  Mi obra maestra – My masterpiece

Type of Spanish: Argentinian

Arturo is an art gallery owner and his friend Renzo is a painter that hates socializing and is on the verge of poverty. Because of this, Arturo tries to help his friend to save his artistic career, however, his plan may be too risky.

One of the main topics of this movie is the art world. As a result, you can learn terms related to it, especially the business side.

15. Neruda

Type of Spanish: Chilean

Neruda is a historical fiction movie about the life of the famous Chilean poet Pablo Neruda. The film focuses on his political role and the consequences of his accusations towards the Chilean government.

This film, as you would expect, has a very poetic narrative. Because of this, you will find a more sophisticated and advanced vocabulary than in other movies.

16. Todas las pecas del mundo – All the freckles in the world

Type of Spanish: Mexican

This coming-of-age romantic comedy, set in 1994, is about José Miguel, a teenager who falls in love with Cristina, a pretty girl who is in a relationship with one of the popular kids. The film shows us José Miguel’s attempts to make Cristina fall in love with him.

Simple vocabulary and a standard accent make this movie fitting for beginner and intermediate learners.

17. Quién te cantará

Type of Spanish: Castilian

Lila is a famous singer that starts to suffer from amnesia. Since her memory is no longer the same, she forgets how to be herself, so a fan of hers tries to help.

The dialogues in this film are very calm and slow, so it can help you if you’re a beginner or in case you want to improve your listening skills. If you saw Money Heist and loved inspector Alicia Sierra, you may like this movie since it’s played by the same actress.

18. Vivir dos veces – Live twice, love once

Type of Spanish: Castilian

Live twice, love once is about Emilio, a retired teacher that is diagnosed with the first stage of Alzheimer’s disease. This results in Emilio, his daughter Julia and his granddaughter Blanca setting off on an adventurous journey. This movie talks about the value of life, love and family.

This film is a good fit for beginners or intermediate learners since the vocabulary that is used is mostly basic and the accent of the characters is easy to understand.

19. Rudo y Cursi – Rough and corny

Type of Spanish: Mexican and Argentinian

One of the most famous Mexican movies on Netflix is Rudo y Cursi. It tells the story of two half-brothers. Beto or ‘Rudo’ who dreams of being a professional soccer player and Tato, who wants to be a singer. However, both are gifted at soccer. One day, Batuta, a soccer scout, comes into their lives, giving them the possibility of recruiting them and sparking the rivalry between them.

If you’re focusing on learning Mexican Spanish, this movie will be very helpful since it contains words, expressions and slang phrases that we Mexican speakers use daily. Just keep in mind that many of these expressions are more suitable for informal contexts.

20. Shrek

I know, I know. Shrek is not actually a Spanish movie, but it’s a classic when it comes to Mexican Spanish dubbing. Since you probably have watched these movies and already know the story of the famous ogre and his donkey friend, it can be easier to focus on the dialogues, which will provide you with a lot of sayings, slang words and even jokes that are popular in Mexico.

Daniela Sanchez

¡Hola! Soy Daniela Sanchez, I’ve taught Spanish in Mexico to a wide array of foreigners. From students and tourists to doctors and soldiers who’ve moved and visited here over the years. During the day I’m a freelancer and marketer, while at night I’m here writing for students of the world wide web looking to learn Spanish. I hope you find what you’re looking here during your journey into Español 🙂 Read More About Me

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