If you’re a Netflix subscriber, you have almost certainly seen the news about the service’s “secret codes” – numerical tags which can reveal genres that are inaccessible from the main menus.
They make Netflix a lot more usable; given the sheer number of movies available it’s a lot more difficult to find stuff you really like without them.
The only problem is that there are hundreds of individual codes – so how can you possibly get through them all?
Fear not, as we have done the donkey work for you. So, without further ado, here’s our list of the 20 secret Netflix codes guaranteed to help you find new content.
Note: the content listed below is available on the U.S. version of Netflix. If you’re watching from a different locale, your results will likely differ. However, the codes will still reveal new content for you to watch.
How to Use These These Codes
To use the codes, enter the following URL into your browser, replacing [CODE] with the number associated with your genre of choice:
1. B-Horror – 8195
The term “B Movie” is derived from Hollywood’s Golden Age, a period when cinemas would typically show a low budget film alongside a much-anticipated blockbuster in a double feature showing.
As film production costs rose the double feature phenomenon began to fade, but the concept of B Movies lived on.
Many B-Horror movies have slowly become cult classics. They are formulaic, have diabolical acting, shocking scripts, and often include an incredibly cheesy monster or ghoul – but we love them!
What you should watch: The Brainiac (1962), Shark Week (2012), and Mad Ron’s Prevues from Hell (1987).
2. Tearjerkers – 6384
Tearjerkers have the sole intention of making you cry or be sad. They are normally excessively sentimental, and you’ll walk away feeling emotionally drained. The feelings they generate can stay with you for weeks, if not longer.
If this is your thing, Netflix has a great selection to choose from. Just make sure you bring your tissues.
What you should watch: Hachi (2009), The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas (2008), and Bounce (2000).
3. Art House – 29764
The most famous Hollywood filmmakers are unwilling to take risks on pieces that are liable to return financial losses, so Art House movies are normally produced outside of the big studios.
They are frequently experimental in nature and the end product closely adheres to the director’s artistic ideals, often without compromise.
What you should watch: The Artist is Present (2012), Samsara (2011), and Kagemusha (1980).
4. Biographical Documentaries – 3652
Biographical Documentaries can amaze, inspire, and shock, and some of the world’s most famous and interesting people have now had movies made about them.
You need to look no further than the 2015 Oscars for an insight into their popularity – The Theory of Everything (about the life of Stephen Hawking) picked up five nominations, including “Best Picture”.
What you should watch: What Happened, Miss Simone (2015), The Life of Riley (2012), and Nicky’s Family (2011).
5. Dramas based on Books – 4961
An incredible number of films are actually adaptations of books – many of which you might not even realize were books in the first place.
Lots of people prefer reading books (or even listening to audiobooks) over watching films, but if you’re looking to digest some of literature’s greatest works in hours rather than weeks, this is the way forward.
What you should watch: Full Metal Jacket (1987), North and South (2004), and Jane Eyre (2011).
6. Social Issue Dramas – 3947
Films have the almost unique gift of being able to bring social strife, injustice, and conflict into the consciousness of the public at large.
This genre has also seen a boom in recent years, with films based on slavery, women’s rights, and class wars all making ripples in Hollywood.
What you should watch: To Kill a Mockingbird (1962), Cyberbully (2011), and Amistad (1997).
7. Period Pieces – 12123
Period pieces have a wide scope. Mention the term in passing, and most people’s minds will drift to TV shows like Downton Abbey and films like Pride and Prejudice, but in reality everything from Titanic to Gladiator is included.
What you should watch: Pride and Prejudice (2005), Amadeus (1984), and Django Unchained (2012).
8. Dark Comedies – 869
Dark comedy (or black comedy) can be described as laughing about something while simultaneously feeling bad about it. It typically takes a serious subject and makes light of it, either with morbid satire or with a feeling of Greek tragedy. The film most often used to typify the genre is Stanley Kubrick’s 1964 classic Dr Strangelove.
The Netflix genre is a bit sparse, but there are still some gems in there to keep you going.
What you should watch: Super (2010), World’s Greatest Dad (2009), and Burke and Hare (2012).
9. Slapstick Comedies – 10256
Slapstick comedy has its roots in silent film, when physical humor such as falling, tripping, and crashing was highlighted and prioritized over character development and dialogue.
Buster Keaton, Charlie Chaplin, and the Keystone Cops were some of the earliest protagonists, but the genre lives on to this day.
What you should watch: The Beverly Hillbillies (1993), Mr Bean’s Holiday (2007), and Mouse Hunt (1997).
10. Asian Action Movies – 77232
Fed up of watching the same tired old plotlines and aging actors in Hollywood’s action movies?
Then why not head to the other side of the world? New actors, new ideas, new locations, and new special effects add some life back into one of Hollywood’s most popular modern genres.
What you should watch: IP Man (2008), Way of the Dragon (1972), and The Suspect (2013).
11. Experimental Movies – 11079
Experimental movies, also known as avant-garde movies, formed the backbone of a genre that started to come into its own in the post-war period. The films pushed the boundaries of convention, using new technologies and new subject matter to break away from the conventional wisdom of the era.
What you should watch: Alice (1988), Holy Motors (2012), and Cheatin’ (2013).
12. Quirky Romance – 36103
“Quirky” is a hard word to pin down. It could be a love story with a twist, a creative adaptation of an old classic, or simply a wacky character who seems out of place in a romantic movie.
If this is your cup of tea, Netflix has a long list of options to choose from.
What you should watch: Silver Linings Playbook (2012), Amelie (2001), and Strictly Ballroom (1992).
13. Dramas Based on Real Life – 3653
Real-life is arguably a director’s greatest resource. The stories we hear about on a day-to-day basis are often way beyond even the most fertile imagination.
Whether your primary interest is sports, politics, or history, there is something in this category to suit every taste.
What you should watch: 1000 to 1: The Cory Weismann Story (2014), Winnie Mandela (2011), and Hotel Rwanda (2004).
14. Emotional Movies – 4136
Emotional movies are closely tied to the aforementioned tearjerkers, except they don’t have to end in sadness. Their objective is to make feelings well up inside you, whether that’s rage, anger, happiness, pity, or anything else.
This is one of the largest sub-sections on Netflix, with more than 300 films listed.
What you should watch: Little Boy (2015), 30 for 30: Hillsborough (2014), and Blackfish (2013)
15. Romantic Favorites – 502675
From modern romantic comedies to the classic love stories of yesteryear, everyone has a favorite romantic movie, even if they won’t admit it.
Spend a night on the sofa with your significant other and get lost in a world kisses, love, and happiness!
What you should watch: Grease (1978), What’s Eating Gilbert Grape (1993), and Along Came Polly (2004).
16. Imaginative Fantasy – 2384
Imaginative fantasy covers a huge amount of ground. Topics such as magic, supernatural happenings, mythology, folklore, and fantasy worlds are all fair game.
Sadly, this is a less-than-exciting genre in Netflix terms, with only a few films available. Nonetheless, you can still find some modern classics and cult B-Movies.
What you should watch: Hellboy (2004), Stardust (2007), and Journey to the Centre of the Earth (1959).
17. Mind-Bending Movies – 1089
Thought-provoking and psychological, this genre will keep you on the edge of your seat as you wonder where the next twist is coming from.
It’s a genre that can keep you thinking long after the film finishes, sometimes even having a profound effect on how you lead your life.
What you should watch: Mr Nobody (2009), The Institute (2013), and The Cabernet of Dr Caligari (1920).
18. Mockumentaries – 26
Mockumentaries are normally parodies, with fictional events being portrayed as a documentary recording of real-life.
The genre first began to gain steam in the early 1980s, but there were some examples of the genre’s beginnings as early as the 1930s.
What you should watch: Trailer Park Boys: Say Goodnight to the Bad Guys (2008), Little Lunch (2015), and Short Poppies (2014).
19. Showbiz Comedies – 3706
Showbiz comedies are a self-deprecating look in the mirror by the people who make movies. Old classics like Sullivan’s Travels and Singing in the Rain got the ball rolling, and their popularity has persisted into the modern era.
What you should watch: Instructions Not Included (2013), Alan Partridge (2013), and To Be or Not To Be (1983).
20. War Movies – 3373
War movies are one of the most popular genres in cinema. The harrowing tales from the front-lines resound with us in a way that no other genre can match.
Whether it’s a battle between ancient civilizations or an up-close look at World War One’s trench warfare, the visuals and the sounds give you the sense of being right there amongst the action.
What you should watch: Black Hawk Down (2001), Beasts of No Nation (2015), and Inglourious Basterds (2009).
What Are Your Favorites?
That’s our list of the best secret codes hiding deep within the bowels of Netflix, but we’re keen to discover more. Especially as given the subjectivity of the topic we are certain that you’ll disagree with some of our selections.
So, which secret Netflix code have you found? And which ones would you recommend to your fellow readers to help them explore some of the hidden corners of cinema?
As always, we’d love to hear from you, as our articles are intended as a starting point to further conversation. With that in mind, please let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.