Bollywood is widely regarded as a synonym for Indian cinema by moviegoers around the world. In reality, the Indian film business encompasses a wide range of genres, including Hindi films as well as regional and art films. With more than 1500 movies released each year, India is the world’s leading film-producing country. Despite having 125 million users in 190 countries, Netflix only entered India in January of this year. Non-Indian viewers were just as perplexed when they saw India’s second most populous country’s cinematic universe.
Some of the top regional films from Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Malayalam, and Bengali film industries were compiled by Netflix in order to compete with rivals like Amazon Prime, Hotstar, and Voot. In comparison to other streaming platforms, Netflix has failed to catch up in terms of regional content. However, the world’s most popular streaming service has compiled a list of some of the top regional movie offerings.
With its headquarters in Chennai, the capital city of Tamil heartland Kollywood has a vast influence across the country as well as among the Tamil diasporas who have settled in the U.S. and other countries around the world. So with that in mind, here is a list of some of the best Tamil movies now streaming on Netflix.
20. Nibunan (2017)
Action-packed thriller ‘Nibunan’, which translates to “expert” in Japanese, has you on the edge of your seat. Sruthi Hariharan and Sruthi Vaidyanathan star in Arun Vaidyanathan’s film, which boasts an impressive array of actors. According to the critics and the audience, “Nibunan” was favorably received. On a mission to find a meticulous psychotic serial killer, an officer and two of his subordinates have teamed together. On the basis of the 2008 Noida double murder case, the film’s main storyline. While the cop is battling Parkinson’s illness on this terrifying voyage, they find some dark secrets. When a police officer decides to take the law into his own hands, viewers have to use their own judgment.
19. Nila (2016)
This film is well appreciated for its photography, acting, and forceful direction, all set against a gorgeous nighttime backdrop in an urban setting. Much more is conveyed by the absence of dialogue between the characters than what is being stated. Socioeconomic disparities and masculine entitlement are delicately highlighted in this film. In Selvamani Selvaraj’s film, ‘Nila,’ a taxi driver is surprised to see his childhood friend as a passenger. In the story, limits between love, passion, friendship, and adulthood are challenged. It was Selvaraj’s “compelling” tale and setting that sparked his desire to make this movie. “Atmospheric” is how he describes the film.
18. Mugamoodi (2012)
‘Mugamoodi’ is Kollywood’s first superhero film. ‘Mugamoodi’, a first-of-its-kind film in Indian regional cinema, was written and directed by Mysskin, a cult director in Tamil Cinema. Anand, a simpleton fed up with society’s injustice and corruption, is the protagonist of the film. In order to raise a vigilante known as ‘Mugamoodi,’ Anand uses his martial arts expertise and a mask.
His martial arts skills are put to the test when he becomes enamored with the daughter of Police Commissioner Gaurav. Angusamy the Dragon, a Kung fu master-turned local don, and his rampaging Mugamoodi gang are the biggest opponent of Gaurav’s life when he messes up with them. In order to rescue both his love and his own life, he must fight the dragon’s ferocious tricks. The film features fast-paced Kung fu fights and is a tribute to Bruce Lee.
17. Mersal (2017)
This Atlee Kumar directed film stars Vijay as Maaran, a doctor who takes on the corrupt healthcare industry. After being accused for the murder of his colleague, Dr. Arjun Zachariah, Maran realizes that the real killer is a disguised version of himself. After digging deep into the case, Maaran discovers that the real killer is a magician named Vetri. When Maaran and Vetri discover that they are twin brothers, the story takes a dramatic turn. To find the killer of their father, the doctor and the magician make an uncommon sibling agreement to work together in the hunt. In ‘Mersal,’ Vijay fans may enjoy the thrill and adrenaline of a revenge thriller with a dash of lively music. The film was also one of the year’s highest-grossing Tamil films.
16. Petta (2019)
Rajinikanth, a South Indian celebrity of international renown, is the star of this action-packed picture. In “Petta,” an old man hired as a hostel warden meets a rowdy group of teens tied to the criminal underworld. To understand why Petta does what he does, the story goes back in time to his childhood. A emerging star of Indian cinema, Nawazuddin Siddiqui plays Singaaram in the movie. Similarly to Rajinikanth, Siddiqui’s raw and convincing performances have been acclaimed by well-known reviewers around the world. As a fan of Rajinikanth’s flicks, you will undoubtedly enjoy “Petta” if you enjoy that type of film.
15. Mr. Chandramouli (2018)
It is the narrative of a talented boxer and his father, Mr. Chandramouli, in the film. Gautham Karthik’s character, Raghav, is a professional boxer who dreams of making it big in the ring. He eagerly awaits the opportunity to secure a lucrative sponsorship. Chandramouli, played by Karthik, is Raghav’s father, and he encourages him to follow his dreams. Father and son become caught up in the nefarious plot of an arrogant businessman. Raghav’s love interest, Madhu, played by Regina Cassandra, is killed in accordance with the businessman’s plan. Raghav is now on a mission to find the real mastermind behind the murders, even if it means sacrificing his boxing career in the process.
14. Metro (2016)
Bobby Simha, Shirish Saravanan, and Sendrayan star in Ananda Krishnan’s action-thriller “Metro,” which is also a crime thriller. However, the film’s director kept his stand and refused to sanitize the film’s violence. This gruesome picture is not for anyone who are searching for a typical action movie. Chain snatching is one of the most prevalent crimes in Indian cities. Throughout the course of the film, we see how chain snatching has a profound effect on a family. At first glance, Arivu’s (Shirish) goal is to bring an organized crime syndicate to justice, but he doesn’t expect to face his own brother in this endeavor.
13. Kabali (2016)
Rajinikanth plays Kabaleeswaran, the titular character in the film, Kabaleeswaran. The story of the gang fight between Kabali and Tony Lee, played by Winston Chao, a local kingpin, takes place in the Kuala Lumpur diaspora of the Tamil community. As a revolutionary Tamil activist, Kabali is raised to the status of a hero. But his opponents band together to falsely charge him with a crime.
When Kabali is released from prison, he sets out to avenge the death of his family by settling scores with everyone engaged in a terrible conspiracy. Personal and ideological wars take place at the same time as firearms are fired and unexplained bodies are found. Critics loved the film for its well-balanced storytelling and ferocity in confronting the demons of racial prejudice in current society.
12. Mehandi Circus (2019)
A couple’s love story is not just about the two people involved, but it also has the power to affect the lives of others. There are caste issues and jealousy in Mehandi (Shweta Tripathi) and Jeeva’s (Madhampatty Rangaraj) story. “Mehandi Circus” is Saravana Rajendran’s first feature-length directorial effort. He revives the dying art of circus, which Mehandi is a part of, through his performances. Mehandi’s circus company often performs at Jeeva’s music store in Kodaikanal, the owner of which is Jeeva himself. The film features the Kamala Circus from Gujarat, which was used as the circus group for the production. In addition to making the images look stunning, the color palette of the film gives a sense of nostalgia.
11. Sarvam Thaala Mayam (2019)
‘Sarvam Thaala Mayam’ is the latest musical to grace the Tamil cinematic landscape. It has been released in some countries under the title “Madras Beats,” which was also written and directed by acclaimed cinematographer Rajiv Menon. Nedumudi Venu portrays the world-renowned Mridangam master Vembu Iyer, while Kumaravel takes on the role of an expert mridangam maker and G. V. Prakash Kumar takes on the role of Johnson’s son Peter. In addition to his admiration for Tamil film star Vijay, Peter is a budding mridangam player. The film’s pace and nuanced depiction of India’s regressive caste system, which is still prevalent, won it high marks from critics. Academy Award-winning composer AR Rahman provided the original score and background soundtrack for this film.
10. Goli Soda 2 (2018)
Vijay Milton returns to direct the follow-up to the critically acclaimed 2015 film “Goli Soda.” The sequel received mixed reviews compared to ‘Goli Soda.’ ‘Goli Soda’ was one of the year’s biggest hits, despite its low budget. For its remarkable depiction of society’s social divides, the film was widely praised by critics. By following four young people from different social groups through their daily routines, Goli Soda 2 aims to show how people from different social strata interact. Class stereotypes have shattered their hopes of making it great in the worlds. The film explores the difficult task faced by young people from lower social groups in modern India as they attempt to find their place in society.
9. Spyder (2017)
Another AR Murugadoss film, ‘Spyder,’ was shot in both Tamil and Telugu at the same time. Both versions star Mahesh Babu, the Telugu superstar. SJ Surya, director of ‘Spyder,’ is also portrayed as Heath Ledger’s Joker-like psychopathic villain, Sudalai. This film stars Mahesh Babu as an astute intelligence officer who finds himself in the path of the villain’s murderous plot. Before Sudalai, a deranged serial murderer, takes his vengeance on the city and its defenseless residents, he must save the city and its people. Thrilled by the sounds of people screaming in agony, Sudalai devises a cunning plan to produce his own personal version of a death opera. There is a cat and mouse game going on that reveals both characters’ inner demons.
8. Taramani (2017)
Taramani takes us on a trip through the lives of those who have discovered their best selves through exploring their darkest selves. When no one is looking, we are forced to examine who we are and what we want to be. You’ll be taken on a roller coaster ride through love and attachment as well as sexuality and blackmail. Vasanth Ravi, Andrea Jeremiah, and Adrian Knight Jesly star in the film, which was directed by Ram. While the principal actors’ performances have been praised, some have criticized Ram’s voiceovers for being “preachy.” In spite of this, it provides us with an accurate picture of the “conservative” mentality of the populace, especially in a city like Chennai.
7.Kannum Kannum Kollaiyadithaal (2020)
Having two pals who pretend to be software developers and their escapades as they discover love is what makes the film enjoyable to see. Having adequate room for all four actors in the film makes it even more amazing. Desingh Periyasamy, a lauded debutant director, shot ‘Kannum Kannum Kollaiyadithaal’ in Delhi, Goa and Chennai. The show isn’t preachy, and none of the characters are made to feel bad about their actions. It does leave us with some “life lessons,” though, thanks to this amusing tale that’s also full of surprises.
6. Anjaan (2014)
‘Anjaan’ tells the story of a guy with a disability who travels to Mumbai in quest of his brother, Raju Bhai, in the city’s underbelly. Raju Bhai, Krishna’s younger brother, mysteriously vanishes, and it turns out that Raju was a masked gangster. To further complicate matters, there are still assassination attempts against Raju Bhai by unknown assailants. As a result, Krishna is now forced to investigate the connection between his brother’s death and the infamous don Imran Bhai, as well as protect himself from the machetes and pistols that mistakenly believe him to be his brother. Filmed by N. Linguswamy, ‘Anjaan’ stars the Tamil movie superstar Suriya in two different parts.
5. Solo (2017)
In Bejoy Nambiar’s bilingual film ‘Solo,’ South Indian star Dulquer Salman plays four different personalities in an anthology of four episodes. The film’s plot structure is based on the four elements of nature—Earth, Fire, Wind, and Water—and Lord Shiva, the Indian god of destruction, is depicted in many forms. It begins with an image of Shiva and a poem that relates to one of the four elements of the universe. The film, which was made concurrently in Tamil and Malayalam and aimed to capitalize on Dulquer Salman’s enormous fan base as an angry young man, had a mixed reception upon its release.
4. Super Deluxe (2019)
Thiagarajan Kumararaja’s film blends four stories into one. After an eight-year hiatus from filmmaking, Kumararaja has returned with a film that has been favorably received by critics and audiences alike. Faith, love, acceptance, and personal values all play a role in these four tales, as the protagonists go through the ups and downs of life. In addition to the great performances of the performers, the film’s lack of judgment on the characters is widely praised. Already making waves in Tamil cinema is the director’s second feature film. The film’s cinematographers, P.S. Vinod and Nirav Shah, have been praised for their work.
3. Puriyaatha Puthir (2017)
Vijay Sethupathi stars in a suspenseful psychological thriller titled ‘Puriyaatha Puthir.’ In this film, Vijay Sethupathi’s Kathir, a music director located in Chennai, is the focus of Ranjit Jeyakodi’s direction. Kathir falls in love with Meera, a beautiful music teacher, at first sight. They begin a relationship that quickly spirals out of control into a web of cybercrime.
An unidentified source begins sending Kathir pictures of Meera’s private life, and Kathir has no idea who is sending them to him. A viral photo or video that features Kathir’s friends and Meera is a task Kathir must do to uncover the criminals. ‘Puriyaatha Puthir’ keeps the audience on the edge of their seats for the most of its running length, and Vijay Sethupathi delivers a remarkable performance.
2. Sila Samayangalil (2016)
This film, which is also known as ‘Sometimes,’ tells the remarkable narrative of seven strangers who visit a clinic to get tested for AIDS and their fear when they discover that one of them is sick. A part of being human is speculating about the future and imagining what might be. We begin to identify with the characters and their experiences as their stories are revealed in increasingly detailed talks. The film also focuses on the AIDS stigma and how it impacts people regardless of whether they have the disease or not. Even though they’re all standing in exactly the same place, the characters don’t seem to be bothered by this. Due to the fact that the entire film takes place in the reception area of a clinic, it relies heavily on character characterization and storyline to carry it.
1. Merku Thodarchi Malai (2018)
“Merku Thodarchi Malai” is the narrative of a daily wage laborer who aspires to acquire a piece of land and live off farming, directed by Lenin Bharathi and produced by Vijay Sethupathi. Several film festivals have screened and even awarded this critically regarded picture. The film’s beauty is enhanced by the music of Ilaiyaraaja.
Its name, “Western Ghats,” refers to the harsh realities of the landless laborers depicted in the film. It vividly depicts the multiple problems that engulf land ownership, whether it be between man and nature, men of different social strata, or corporations and indigenous tribes. Lenin himself was born in one of the villages where the film is set, and 90% of the actors in the film are from those areas. In an interview with The Wire, Lenin reveals that his mother was a farm worker and his father was a member of the Communist Party.