When choosing a TV for movie watching you should first consider the lighting conditions of the TV room. You will generally have a better experience if you watch movies in a dark room. You should be looking for a TV that can deliver deep blacks, has rich colors and bright highlights, especially in HDR content.
We've tested 80 TVs and below are our recommendations for the best ones you can buy. See also our recommendations for the best TVs on the market.
Note: Prices and availability fluctuate a lot at the end of the year and especially after Black Friday.
The best TV for watching movies is the Sony A8F. This OLED TV has excellent overall performance and watching movies in a dark room on the Sony A8F is a remarkable experience. The emissive OLED technology delivers perfect and uniform blacks as each individual pixel can turn off. This infinite contrast ratio helps improve the picture quality with excellent results. It is also a good choice if you have a wide room since it has great viewing angles and you can watch from the side without losing much in picture quality. It is loaded with nice image processing goodies, like 24p judder removal and motion interpolation that can further enhance your viewing experience.
However, just like all OLED TVs, the Sony A8F has the risk of temporary image retention or permanent burn-in, although we do not expect most people to experience this with normal, varied usage. Also, due to the nearly instantaneous response time, some people might notice some stutter, which can however easily be fixed with the help of motion interpolation.
Overall the Sony A8F is an excellent TV that will keep movie enthusiasts very happy.
If the Sony A8F is too expensive, then get the LG B8. It uses an OLED display very similar to the Sony A8F. The overall performance of the two is nearly identical. The B8 has slightly worse gray uniformity, although this could be due to panel variance. It is a better choice for gaming, as it has less input lag, and the smart platform is a bit faster and easier to use.
If you find that the Sony A8F or the LG B8 are not bright enough for your bright room, then get the Samsung Q9FN. It does not have the perfect blacks of the OLEDs, but it can get very bright. The Samsung Q9FN can deliver an excellent movie watching experience both in bright and in dark rooms due to the effective local dimming that allows it to display deep blacks. It has excellent reflection handling, can easily fight bright room glare and has many picture-enhancing features like 24p Judder removal and motion interpolation.
If the Sony A8F is beyond your allocated budget for a TV, the Sony X900F is the best mid-range TV for watching movies in a dark room. It doesn't have the perfect blacks and infinite contrast ratio of the A8F, but it's no slouch either. The X900F has an excellent native contrast ratio and a decent local dimming feature that further improves dark room performance. Motion is smooth and crisp, with less stutter than the A8F or the B8.
Unfortunately, it doesn't have the wide viewing angles or the perfect black uniformity of the A8F and the B8.
Overall, it is a great TV for most uses, and it should please most people. If you can still find it, the Sony X900E is an equally good choice for a mid-range TV.
If you find the Sony X900F expensive, then get the Vizio P Series 2018. The Vizio does not have the excellent reflections handling that the Sony X900F has. On the other hand, the P series is a very good TV. It is excellent for watching movies due to its great dark scene performance, has an excellent motion handling and a low input lag, which is great for gamers.
If you find that the Sony X900F is still expensive, the best budget TV for watching movies is the TCL 6 Series R617. You will not get the viewing angles of the Sony A8F or the excellent reflections handling of the X900F.
On the upside, watching movies on the TCL R617 is a very pleasant experience. The TV has nice deep blacks due to the high contrast ratio and local dimming support that make the picture look very good. The TCL can get very bright (brighter than the more expensive LG SK9500) in both SDR and HDR content and its wide color gamut displays vivid colors with highlights that pop. It also has an excellent low input lag which is great for gaming.
Overall, the R617 is a very good TV for most usages and will perform very well when you decide to watch your favorite movie.
If you find that the TCL R617 is still too pricey and want to get a cheaper budget TV, then get the TCL S Series S405. The S425 is the newer version; they are the exact same internally, but there are some slight cosmetic changes. The S405/S425 cannot get as bright as the R617. However, it has a great contrast with deep blacks which looks good in dark rooms and a low motion blur that keeps fast content clear. It is also equipped with a very low input lag which will keep gamers happy. Overall it is a decent TV for watching movies, considering the price.
Our recommendations above are what we think are currently the best TVs to watch movies for most people in each price range. We factor in the price (a cheaper TV wins over a pricier one if the difference isn't worth it), feedback from our visitors and availability (no TVs that are difficult to find or almost out of stock everywhere).
If you would like to do the work of choosing yourself, here is the list of all our reviews of TVs. Be careful not to get too caught up in the details. While no TV is perfect, most TVs are great enough to please almost everyone, and the differences are often not noticeable unless you really look for them.