“Netflix completely shook up the world.”—Steven Van Zandt
Netflix definitely did shake up the world.
I mean, does anyone remember Blockbuster?
Those days when you had to physically walk out to get your movie fix?
And if you were looking for a specific movie and your local movie rental store didn’t have it then… well, tough luck!
Then, Netflix came in and changed all that.
Netflix has so much content available to stream on a whim that most of us are familiar with the “Netflix Binge” adventure.
But did you know that Netflix also has Spanish movies?
Yep, you can turn your next Netflix binge adventure into a language learning experience!
Let’s see how to make that happen!
Tips for Learning Spanish with Netflix Movies
Now that you’re seeing the untapped potential of your Netflix account, you’re ready to use all those incredible Spanish movies to shift your language learning program into high gear.
Learning Spanish should be entertaining and engaging. You should look forward to the time you spend working toward fluency. Movies supply all that, and more. They’re informative, fun and, for some of us, an escapist pleasure.
Netflix movie night with Spanish movies means there are no more random popcorn binges. Every film viewed turns a recreational activity into prime language learning time!
Here are some tips for making the most of your foray into the world of Spanish movies on Netflix.
If you’re a beginning learner, definitely use subtitles with the movies you choose. Even though the subtitles are there, resist the urge to just read the dialogue. Subtitles are only for unfamiliar words and phrases. This isn’t reading practice, so don’t rely heavily on them!
And once you’re comfortable watching movies without subtitles, turn them off. Or, you can change the settings to show Spanish subtitles for an extra boost to your learning!
This is a great opportunity to learn some new vocabulary—as well as see and hear it in context spoken by native speakers.
Jot down interesting phrases and idioms but choose only the most exceptional examples or ones that are repeated often. You don’t want to be so busy taking notes that you lose track of the plot.
Hear some slangy phrases? Jot them down!
If you need to, hit pause. Write your notes down, then resume watching.
Schedule Spanish Netflix Movies
Like every other part of your Spanish language program, watching Spanish films should be a scheduled activity.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for a random movie date or late-night film binge. In addition to those spur-of-the-moment jaunts, strive to watch a minimum of one or two movies a week. This will give you a solid block of listening time.
Feel like a Spanish film binge on the weekend? That’s a bonus!
Repeat After Viewing
Your work isn’t over when the final credits roll.
So many examples of pronunciation by native speakers, Spanish dialects and even off-color language come out in films. Those items are worth reviewing.
So after the movie’s over—or even during a part that particularly catches your attention—practice repeating what you’ve heard. If you’re still watching the film, pause to repeat. Otherwise, repeat key lines while you’re washing the popcorn bowl and tidying the sofa cushions.
Don’t just watch and forget. Watch, gain meaning and get a feel for the language—and then work all of that into your skillset!
6 Spanish Movies on Netflix Perfect for Language Learning
We’ve included six excellent Spanish movie choices for learners of the language below. You’ll find everyday conversations, accents and dialects as well as plenty of fun And if you stick around, we have a bonus seventh Netflix Spanish learning option for you that you’re sure to love!
And if you love to learn Spanish with authentic Spanish-language media, we recommend that you also check out FluentU.
If you’re looking for a method to familiarize yourself with Spanish as well as deepen your knowledge of the culture, FluentU is the best way to go!
This Colombian comedy manages to be laugh-out-loud hilarious and still have some heartwarming moments.
When a widower goes on an adventure with his children, anything can happen—and it does!
This film contains a lot of talk about jobs, money and material things, which is pretty much on target when you consider the film’s title. Much of the vocabulary is the kind younger people use, so you’ll get a good helping of slang and modern expressions.
A bonus? That unique Colombian accent!
Note the cultural references and watch for idioms with this one. Also, the scenery is fabulous!
Dramas are the backbone of many movie nights, at least in my house. Plots are layered, characters show growth and most of the time, there’s a twist at the end. It’s just a good way to pass a few hours.
Better yet if the action takes place in Spanish!
This sci-fi drama/thriller is sure to keep viewers engaged. It’s about a woman who’s influenced by a storm and saves a child… or does she?
I’m not going to give the ending away—you’ll have to watch for yourself if you want to know what happens.
Viewers can expect to hear some news broadcasts as well as a bit of medical jargon. All this is presented with some seriously gripping, frightening music that’s the perfect backdrop to the heart-stopping action.
This film is a great option to get comfortable with core Spanish vocabulary revolving around family, everyday routines and time. The characters also talk about the past a lot, so you’ll get plenty of past tense practice.
The dialogue is direct and if you’ve got an intermediate or advanced skill level, forgo the subtitles. Just enjoy the movie!
“No estoy loca” (I’m Not Crazy)
This Chilean “dramedy” flick hits all the marks for quirky and life-altering.
When a woman discovers that her so-called “best friend” is having an affair with her husband and that she’s incapable of having children on the same day, she’s driven to attempt suicide. This lands her in a psychiatric clinic.
There’s only one sticking point: She’s not crazy!
The dialogue is fast-moving and witty. The subject matter concerns adult issues like infidelity and infertility but despite the heavy topics covered, the movie is a feel-good journey of acceptance sure to make you smile. There are a few off-color expressions but, given the subject matter, they’re almost expected.
This is wonderfully entertaining. It’s also a super way to grab a few idioms—be ready to jot them down so you’ll be able to use them later!
“Lo más sencillo es complicarlo todo” (The Easiest Thing Is to Complicate Everything)
The title of this movie pretty much tells the tale. It’s a coming-of-age romcom that’s a bit predictable but still loads of fun to watch. It’s geared toward a young adult audience so it’s suitable for some family viewing, despite dealing with some misguided love.
It’s a pretty typical and engaging young adult film!
As its target audience is on the younger side, this film contains talk about cars, school, boys, relationships and, well, topics that interest high schoolers and college-age adults!
The vocabulary is conversationally basic so upper beginners and intermediate learners should be able to catch a lot of what’s said. On the other hand, the storyline moves quickly and sometimes each subject is only touched upon briefly before the next one is introduced—you might have to rewatch bits to keep up.
Family dramas can be so interesting—and relatable! If you’ve got sisters, you just might see a bit of your family in this flick.
Following their mother’s death and the shocking discovery that their father isn’t their biological dad, four sisters go on an adventure to find their real fathers.
Expect the unexpected with this one! The search is on, and with it are chats about expectations, DNA testing, inheritances and family secrets. The four women also have very different personalities, so it’s fun to see how differently they speak. Take note!
Besides that, there’s plenty of solid, core vocabulary for listening practice here. Settle in and enjoy this one!
As the sisters make their way to their final destination, they discover more than they bargain for—and the result is truly heartwarming. Along their journey, they find peace with each other and themselves… and maybe even a little love.
“Acapulco la vida va” (Acapulco Life Goes On)
This Mexican buddy comedy showcases three lifelong friends who take a trip to Acapulco together. As is usually the case on these types of adventures, there are mishaps and ridiculous situations. This is one for a night when you want to laugh!
Watching these older gentlemen take this jaunt down Memory Lane will warm any heart. Since they’re older men, the language they use reflects this in style. The three men speak clearly, slowly and properly, making it easy to keep up.
Their journey has a sad side but despite everything, they manage to move forward, reclaim days long gone and ultimately show that some friendships last a lifetime.
Bonus: Disney Flicks
Did you know that Disney movies on Netflix can be watched with Spanish audio? The function is on the film’s home page, so adjust it, then add English subtitles if you need them.
This is a great way for everyone to grab some Spanish language practice—regardless of age or learning level.
Overwhelmed by the incredible Disney choices? No worries! We have recommendations.
“Coco” and “Christopher Robin” are both good choices that will make everyone smile and make for some excellent Spanish learning. The Disney options on Netflix are always rotating so check what’s available at the moment and enjoy!
Family night, anyone?
Using Netflix to watch Spanish movies as part of your language program provides a delightfully unique opportunity for learning.
These flicks make it possible to gain fantastic language skills while getting a glimpse of Spanish culture.
So pop the popcorn, order a pizza and settle in. Grab a notebook and pen—then watch and learn!
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