The 19 Best Movies & Shows To Watch On Netflix When You Feel Anxious


People who suffer from anxiety deal with it in many different ways. At the end of the day, it really all depends on what's relaxing to you. So, if you're looking to escape your anxiety and movies and television make you nervous, this list of the 19 best things to watch on Netflix when you feel anxious is not for you. Turn back now for fear of triggering an entertainment-induced panic attack. Now, for those of you who find no better way to escape anxiety than disappear in a good movie or television show for a few hours (or a 24-hour marathon session — no judgements), you've come to the right place.

Just like there are some who don't like watching television or movies when they're anxious, different people respond to different entertainment when stressed. Some like the familiar warmth of a classic Disney animated film, others prefer to enter into the world of fantasy and get as far away from the real world as they can. No matter what you prefer, Netflix has it all, which makes it the perfect first stop for when you start to feel anxiety creeping in. Granted, it's 2017, aka the year of anxiety, and it's impossible to be on Netflix 24/7. But, hey, we can try.


One of Disney's most authentic and beautiful coming of age stories yet, Moana provides both a perfect escape from reality and a great boost that will make you feel ready to take on whatever it is that has you anxious in the first place.

Perfect for... when you're anxious about a major assignment and need a confidence boost to get you through the day.


The tragically short-lived musical comedy/fairytale parody show Galavant is so ridiculous and charming, watching it can only delight and melt away anxiety. The show only lasted 18 episodes, but those certainly pack enough laughs to get you through even your roughest weeks.

Perfect for... when you need a quick break from reality (episodes run 21 minutes) to recharge.

'Miss Congeniality'

A classic from start to finish, Miss Congeniality is a great anti-anxiety movie. It's just impossible to feel anxious watching Sandra Bullock hilariously save a group of beauty queens while also embracing girl power.

Perfect for... when you find yourself hit with that "I'm not good enough" anxiety.

'Planet Earth: The Complete Collection'

Planet Earth can be just as stressful as real life — watching animals chase after each other and fight is not necessarily an anxiety dampener — but it's also oddly soothing.

Perfect for... when your anxiety is so all consuming, you need to be reminded of the beauty in the world.


Oh, Riverdale. The CW's newest hit is teenage escapism at its finest. Disappear for 13 hours to binge the first season, and you'll forget about anything other than the crazy Riverdale drama.

Perfect for... pre-family reunion anxiety. Nothing will make you more thankful for your relatively normal family than spending a few hours with the Blossoms and the Coopers.


Like Galavant, Penelope offers a new take on the fairytale genre, though will much less singing and jokes. The movie is about a rich, young woman who was cursed with the nose of a pig and needs to find someone who will love her as is to break the spell.

Perfect for... those suffering from social anxiety. Penelope is all about loving yourself and putting yourself out there despite any insecurities. It's great for anyone who needs a reminder that sometimes, pushing yourself out of your comfort zone is worth it.

'High School Musical'

Singing, dancing, high school cliques, Zac Efron — what else could one possibly want from a Disney Channel Original Movie?

Perfect for... when you're anxious about trying something new. High School Musical is all about the beautiful things that can happen when you push yourself into new activities and follow your heart.

'Young Frankenstein'

Mel Brooks' wacky Frankenstein spoof Young Frankenstein will cure all that ails you. It's just a scientific fact.

Perfect for... anxiety that's keeping you awake. Watch Young Frankenstein before bed, and you'll drift off with that warm, giddy happiness in your head instead of massive anxiety.

'Jane The Virgin'

Objectively one of the most delightful shows on television, Jane the Virgin isn't 100 percent escapism, but there's something very soothing about watching characters deal with anxieties and life changes similar to yours.

Perfect for... your everyday anxiety: what are you doing with your life? When are you going to have kids? Who would narrate the story of your life?

'Larry Crowne'

One of Tom Hanks' most underrated movies of the past decade, Larry Crowne is an upbeat romantic comedy about a man who goes back to community college to get his degree.

Perfect for... that nasty self-doubt anxiety that gets under your skin.

'Beauty And The Beast'

Disney's live action Beauty and the Beast has its flaws, but there's no denying the magic of seeing them bring an animated classic to life. The sets, the costumes, the classic love story, it's all done with such enchanting charm, it's really impossible not to feel like you're seeing a childhood dream come to life.

Perfect for... an escape from any and all possible anxieties.

'Absolutely Fabulous'

Take a load off with the ladies of Absolutely Fabulous, the long-running comedy series starring Jennifer Saunders and Joanna Lumley.

Perfect for... reminding you to enjoy the little things. There's no point in being anxious all the time, and sometimes it takes a couple of drunk English ladies to remind you of that.

'Moonrise Kingdom'

Wes Anderson's Moonrise Kingdom can pretty much be boiled down to quirky kids in love.

Perfect for... weekend anxiety — there's no point in stressing about the new week when you've got two full days of freedom to enjoy.


Learn about the mysteries of the universe via the soothing voice of Neil deGrasse Tyson.

Perfect for... the anxiety that keeps you up at night. Cosmos is great before bed entertainment that will both educate you and relax you to infinity and beyond.

'The Good Place'

Nothing puts your entire existence into perspective like a sitcom about the afterlife. The Good Place is also just an amazing show that will cure your anxiety, take you to prom and pay your student loans, just sayin'.

Perfect for... literally any anxiety you could possibly have. (The Good Place is really quite good, folks.)


BBC's Sherlock is a fun new take on the famous detective. Sure, it's light on women and a bit extra, but that's part of its charm.

Perfect for... when you want that two hour escape from your family drama, but don't want to spend that time invested in an actual movie.

'Men In Black'

Will Smith. Aliens. Wacky humor and special effects. Men In Black is a perfect time capsule for the late '90s.

Perfect for... when your existential crisis turns into anxiety about whether or not there is other intelligent life in the universe.

'13 Going On 30'

A good romantic comedy can fix almost any feeling of anxiety. A good romantic comedy starring Jennifer Garner, Mark Ruffalo, and Judy Greer? Well, that could save the world.

Perfect for... when you're anxious about the future. When you're doubting where you're going, 13 Going on 30 will remind you to live in the now.

'Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt'

Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt is a very wacky take on being a survivor of abduction and kidnapping. Throughout the show's three seasons, it consistently tackled tough topics through a very goofy lens (with varying degrees of success), and provided fans with a few perfect catchphrases.

Perfect for... those who need their anti-anxiety media not to totally ignore the problems in the world. Sometimes, the worst thing you can do when anxious is try to escape it completely. Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt takes place in a heightened reality that still acknowledges the inevitable low points of life.

Next time you feel that anxiety creeping in, open your Netflix and check out one of these shows or movies. It might not cure your anxiety completely, but these 19 picks will, at the very least, put your anxieties on a well-deserved time out.