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Independent Dramas on Netflix

Last updated September 29, 2022

Dog Pound Poster

Dog Pound

2010 | NR | 3.9 out of 5 Stars

At a spirit-crushing juvenile correctional facility, teenage offenders Butch, Davis and Angel desperately struggle to steer clear of trouble while simultaneously confronting violent challenges from aggressive inmates and abusive adults.
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Beat the Drum Poster

Beat the Drum

2003 | NR | 3.9 out of 5 Stars

When a mysterious illness wipes out his entire village, claiming the lives of both his parents, 9-year-old Musa (Junior Singo) is forced to set off on his own, eventually joining the ranks of the scores of orphans who live on the streets of Johannesburg. Directed by David Hickson, this poignant award-winning film examines the heartbreaking effect that AIDS has had on the poor and underprivileged children of Africa.
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Any Day Now Poster

Any Day Now

2012 | NR | 3.9 out of 5 Stars

Rudy and Paul take in their neighbor's teenage son Marco, who has Down syndrome, when his neglectful mother throws him out of her apartment. Their attempt to legally adopt Marco sparks a court battle over gay rights in this powerful true story.
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The World's Fastest Indian Poster

The World's Fastest Indian

2005 | NR | 3.9 out of 5 Stars

This fact-based drama stars Anthony Hopkins as quirky New Zealander Burt Munro, a 67-year-old grandfather who flies across Utah's Bonneville Salt Flats and attempts to break into the record books on his customized Indian Scout motorcycle.
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Drift Poster

Drift

2013 | NR | 3.9 out of 5 Stars

In the 1970s, the two Kelly brothers spend their youth searching for the perfect wave and launch a backyard surf business out of their van. Battling big waves, small town conservatism and criminals, the brothers give rise to a global brand.
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Monsieur Lazhar Poster

Monsieur Lazhar

2011 | NR | 3.9 out of 5 Stars

When an Algerian immigrant seeking asylum in Montreal takes a job replacing an elementary school teacher who committed suicide, he finds that his own secret, tragic background enables him to help the children deal with their loss.
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Donnie Darko Poster

Donnie Darko

2001 | NR | 3.9 out of 5 Stars

Writer-director Richard Kelly's trippy, mind-bending feature debut stars Jake Gyllenhaal as a troubled Midwestern teenager plagued by incessant sleepwalking, family drama and visions of a menacing 6-foot-tall, doomsday-prophesying rabbit. Drew Barrymore, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Mary McDonnell, Jena Malone, Patrick Swayze and Noah Wyle also star in this dark and intriguing psychological fantasy that swiftly earned a cult following.
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The Music Never Stopped Poster

The Music Never Stopped

2011 | NR | 3.9 out of 5 Stars

Nearly 20 years after their son ran away from home, his estranged parents learn he has a brain tumor that prevents him from forming new memories. Desperate to reconnect, the father realizes the best way is through the classic rock music he despises.
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The Red Violin Poster

The Red Violin

1998 | NR | 3.9 out of 5 Stars

When the long-lost "red violin," a rare instrument crafted during the Italian Renaissance, shows up at a modern auction, it reveals its mysterious history -- and the lives of its previous owners -- in a series of flashbacks spanning three centuries.
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Fargo Poster

Fargo

1996 | NR | 3.8 out of 5 Stars

Police chief Marge Gunderson -- a serious sleuth who's sharper than her folksy accent suggests -- is hot on the trail of a Minneapolis car dealer conspiring with two kidnappers to snatch his wife so he can pocket part of the hefty ransom.
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Down in the Delta Poster

Down in the Delta

1998 | NR | 3.8 out of 5 Stars

Unemployed single mother Loretta Sinclair (Alfre Woodard) lives with her mother, Rosa Lynn (Mary Alice), in a Chicago apartment until drug abuse causes Loretta to neglect her children in this familly drama directed by renowned poet Maya Angelou. To get Loretta back on her feet, Rosa Lynn ships her and the kids to their Mississippi Delta hometown, where Uncle Earl (Al Freeman Jr.) takes them in and teaches them about their rich heritage.
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American Streetballers Poster

American Streetballers

2010 | NR | 3.8 out of 5 Stars

Writer-director Matthew Scott Krentz also stars in this gritty tale about John, a troubled junior college basketball player who forges an unlikely friendship with a fellow baller through pick-up games on the streets of St. Louis. Former University of Missouri basketball player Jimmy McKinney co-stars as John's onetime competitor, who eventually becomes a source of solace and strength as they cope with family dysfunction and poverty.
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Saints and Soldiers Poster

Saints and Soldiers

2004 | NR | 3.8 out of 5 Stars

In a story based on actual events, a small band of Allied soldiers are trapped behind enemy lines with information that could save thousands of American lives. Outgunned and ill-equipped, they battle a frigid wilderness and roving German troops.
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Partition Poster

Partition

2007 | NR | 3.8 out of 5 Stars

In 1947, the same tumultuous year that India and Pakistan were divided into two separate states, a Sikh and former soldier (Jimi Mistry) puts his life on the line to save the life of a beautiful Muslim woman (Kristin Kreuk). In the wake of the heroic rescue, the two strangers find themselves falling in love. But are they destined to stay confined by the strict boundaries of their respective faiths?
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The Fat Boy Chronicles Poster

The Fat Boy Chronicles

2010 | NR | 3.8 out of 5 Stars

Overweight teenager Jimmy Winterpock transfers to a new school, where he's mercilessly bullied by classmates. After he starts keeping a journal that puts him in touch with his feelings, he resolves to lose weight and win the girl of his dreams.
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La Mission Poster

La Mission

2009 | NR | 3.8 out of 5 Stars

Ultra-macho ex-con Che Rivera learns the true meaning of being a father when he discovers his son is gay. At first, he turns violent. But when a beautiful neighbor helps him see through his anger, he begins to reconcile his long-held beliefs.
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Harlem Aria Poster

Harlem Aria

1999 | NR | 3.8 out of 5 Stars

Harlem kid Anton (Gabriel Casseus) is young, black and gifted with a voice of operatic beauty. A mental disability can't hamper his plans for stardom, which combust when Anton hears pianist Matthew (Christian Camargo) playing Verdi in the park and breaks into song. While Matthew is cynical and Anton too trusting, silver-tongued street buddy Wes (Damon Wayans) has enough gumption to go around, and he's determined to land the duo in the limelight.
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Paraiso Travel Poster

Paraiso Travel

2007 | NR | 3.8 out of 5 Stars

After a long journey from Colombia to a new life in New York City, Marlon (Aldemar Correa) is separated from his beloved, Reina (Angelica Blandon), and must fend for his own in the dangerous streets of Queens, where he gets a menial job in a restaurant. While flashbacks reveal details of the couple's trek to America, Marlon starts to fall for an aspiring singer (Margarita Rosa de Francisco) in this gripping drama that also stars John Leguizamo.
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Older Than America Poster

Older Than America

2008 | NR | 3.8 out of 5 Stars

Rain (Georgina Lightning) has visions of a cruel incident suffered by her Native American ancestors. Afraid she'll be branded a lunatic like her elderly aunt, Rain fears telling even her policeman husband, Johnny (Adam Beach), about the dreams. But as they intensify, she finds that they have eerie connections to her current life. Lightning also writes and directs this mix of supernatural and historical mysteries.
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What's Eating Gilbert Grape Poster

What's Eating Gilbert Grape

1993 | NR | 3.8 out of 5 Stars

In a backwater Iowa town, Gilbert struggles to take care of his mentally disabled brother, Arnie, and provide for the rest of his family. But after falling for the stranded Becky, Gilbert discovers exciting new possibilities for his life.
Details about What's Eating Gilbert Grape

Yelling to the Sky Poster

Yelling to the Sky

2011 | NR | 3.8 out of 5 Stars

Rocker Lenny Kravitz's daughter, Zoë, stars in this independent coming-of-age drama as Sweetness O'Hara, a conflicted 17-year-old girl struggling to reconcile her purposeful dreams with the realities of her violent surroundings.
Details about Yelling to the Sky

After the Wedding Poster

After the Wedding

2006 | NR | 3.8 out of 5 Stars

To save the failing orphanage he runs in India, Danish transplant Jacob Petersen returns to his homeland to meet a self-indulgent businessman named Jørgen who's offered a generous donation -- and represents everything the noble-minded Jacob abhors.
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Soda Springs Poster

Soda Springs

2012 | NR | 3.8 out of 5 Stars

The story of a man's struggle to claim his future by confronting his past. The road is not an easy one though, as old demons resurface to threaten everything Eden has fought to overcome.
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We the Party Poster

We the Party

2012 | NR | 3.8 out of 5 Stars

Mario Van Peebles directs this dramedy that explores the ups and downs of a group of high school friends trying to negotiate their way through the sometimes treacherous waters of relationships, money, sex, identity and social media.
Details about We the Party

Saving Faith Poster

Saving Faith

2010 | NR | 3.8 out of 5 Stars

Malcolm's life is crumbling after surviving a car accident that took the life of his daughter. He's losing his focus, direction and faith. But altercations with a rebellious gang member reveal the power of forgiveness and save Malcolm's faith.
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