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The 13 Best Things Coming to Netflix in October

Dolly Parton’s musical memoir and Adam Sandler’s Halloween comedy arrive

Dolly Parton performs onstage during the 61st Annual Grammy Awards and Adam Sandler in the film Hubie Halloween

ROBYN BECK/AFP via Getty Images; Scott Yamano/Netflix

En español | Feel a bit overwhelmed when Netflix unloads what feels like a hundred new films and shows every month? Our critics are here to pull the best new stuff for grownups — from Frances McDormand in Fargo and Dolly Parton’s musical memoir to Sacha Baron Cohen as Abbie Hoffman in The Trial of the Chicago 7. Don’t touch that channel — the viewing’s fine!

The Unicorn, Season 1, 2019

Walton Goggins (Justified, The Shield) plays a widower getting back into the dating game, where he’s considered a “unicorn”: a good-looking guy pushing 50 who’s not a bitter divorcé. Advising him are his pals played by Rob Corddry, Maya Lynne Robinson, Michaela Watkins and Omar Benson Miller.

Watch it here: The Unicorn


Fargo, 1996

The TV spin-off, lately starring Chris Rock, is terrific. But aw, geez, there’s nothing like the original Coen brothers movie about a homicidal car salesman (William H. Macy), a pregnant cop (Oscar winner Frances McDormand) as relentless as Les Miz’s Javert, a hapless criminal (Steve Buscemi) and a wood chipper.

Watch it here: Fargo


Emily in Paris, Season 1, 2020

It’s not what most viewers are calling a masterpiece, but zillions are bingeing this wish-fulfillment show from Sex and the City creator Darren Star about a young social-network influencer (Lily Collins) who lands a dream job in the City of Light, full of gorgeous sights, clothes, clichés and smoochable Gallic hunks.

Watch it here: Emily in Paris


David Attenborough: A Life on Our Planet, 2020

If you liked his blockbuster Blue Planet movies, tune in for the natural-history documentarian’s new film that warns that our world is in big trouble. A longtime climate-change skeptic, Sir David Attenborough, 94, has revised his views after an avalanche of evidence. 

Watch it here: A Life on Our Planet


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Basic Instinct, 1992

It’s still a vulgar, trashy takeoff on Hitchcock’s Vertigo, but now it’s a trash classic. Sharon Stone deserved her Golden Globe nomination as a sex-killing suspect, Michael Douglas is entertainingly sweaty as the detective, and the editing and music deserved their Oscar nominations.

Watch it here: Basic Instinct


Dolly Parton: Here I Am, 2019 (Oct. 6)

The famous yet underrated country music genius tells her life story, through interviews and performances.

Watch it here: Dolly Parton: Here I Am


Hubie Halloween, 2020 (Oct. 7)

Adam Sandler’s comedy about a much-mocked nerd who loves his small town’s Halloween parade and is called upon to solve a murder on All Hallow’s Eve.

Watch it here: Hubie Halloween


Schitt’s Creek, Season 6 (Oct. 7)

Find out what all the fuss is about over this Emmy award-gobbling comedy starring Eugene Levy and Catherine O’Hara as rich folks who buy a small town for fun, lose their shirts and then have to relocate there.

Watch it here: Schitt’s Creek


The Haunting of Bly Manor, Season 1 (Oct. 9)

The Haunting of Hill House was a smash hit, so auteur Mike Flanagan is back with — not a sequel, but a similar scary story about a very old mansion with very dark secrets, loosely adapted from Henry James’ The Turn of the Screw.

Watch it here: The Haunting of Bly Manor


Moneyball, 2011 (Oct. 14)

Movies don’t get much smarter than this fact-based movie about a baseball manager (Brad Pitt) who hires a tech nerd (Jonah Hill) to make his losing team a winner. From the makers of Schindler’s List, Foxcatcher and The West Wing.


The Trial of the Chicago 7, 2020 (Oct. 17)

An utterly wonderful, vivid dramatization of the trial of Chicago’s 1968 demonstrators, with bravura performances by Frank Langella as Judge Hoffman, Sacha Baron Cohen as Abbie Hoffman, Michael Keaton as Ramsey Clark and Yahya Abdul-Mateen II as Bobby Seale.

Watch it here: The Trial of the Chicago 7


Carol, 2015 (Oct. 20)

Before she got famous as the coldhearted creator of the Talented Mr. Ripley book series, Patricia Highsmith wrote this poignant, somewhat autobiographical tale inspired by her own Hitchcock-like passion for high-class blondes in the 1950s. Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara couldn’t be better as the star-crossed couple.


The Queen’s Gambit, 2020 (Oct. 23)

Rising star Anya Taylor-Joy plays a 1950s girl hooked on chess and pills, an outsider who beats the boys at their own game. From the Oscar-nominated writer of Logan and Out of Sight.

Watch it here: The Queen’s Gambit

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