When choosing the best TV for movies, it's important to consider your TV room's lighting conditions. You'll generally have a better experience if you watch movies in a dark room as your TV's picture quality in dark scenes will look better and have fewer reflections. You should be looking for a TV that can deliver deep blacks, has rich colors, and has bright highlights, especially if you watch a lot of HDR content. It's also important to have a TV that supports eARC audio passthrough if you want to enhance your sound experience with a soundbar or receiver.
We've tested more than 100 TVs under the latest test bench, and below are our recommendations for the best TV for home theater and movies you can buy. See our picks for the best TVs for TV shows, the best 4k TVs, and the best TVs for sports.
The best OLED TV for movies we've tested is the Sony A90J OLED. It's a flagship TV with exceptional picture quality, especially if you're watching movies in a dark room. It has a sleek design that should look nice in most home theater setups, and you can elevate the stand to place a soundbar in front without blocking the screen.
OLEDs are known for their ability to turn off individual pixels, resulting in a near-infinite contrast ratio. It means that blacks are deep and inky when viewed in the dark, and there's no blooming around bright objects either. If you watch HDR movies, the A90J supports HDR10 and Dolby Vision, but not HDR10+. It displays a wide color gamut, has excellent out-of-the-box accuracy, and has fantastic gradient handling with minimal banding. It also gets brighter in HDR than most OLEDs; this means that although it's not as bright as LED TVs, HDR content still looks amazing.
Unfortunately, because it has such a quick response time, lower-frame rate content appears to stutter as each frame is held on longer. It has a motion interpolation feature if this bothers you. Also, OLEDs have the risk of permanent burn-in if exposed to the same static elements over a long period, but this isn't an issue if you watch varied content like movies. Overall, this is the best TV for movies.
The best value OLED TV for watching movies we've tested is the LG C1 OLED. It delivers a very similar picture quality to the Sony A90J, thanks to its near-infinite contrast ratio that results in deep, uniform blacks and no blooming around bright objects in dark scenes. It offers better value than the Sony TV, but this comes at the expense of processing power. Although most movies look stunning, it's a bit less accurate.
On the other hand, it's a great choice if you're looking for a versatile alternative. It has better gaming features, including HDMI 2.1 bandwidth on all four HDMI ports, which is great if you have multiple consoles. It has a slew of extra gaming features, including variable refresh rate support and incredibly low input lag.
Unfortunately, it doesn't support DTS passthrough, so if you're planning on using a UHD Blu-ray player, you're better off connecting it directly to your soundbar or home theater instead of using the TV's eARC feature. Other than that, the C1 is an excellent TV overall.
The best TV for watching movies in a small space is the Samsung QN43QN90AAFXZA. Unlike most TVs on this list, it's available in sizes as small as 43 inches and as large as 98 inches, so there's a model for any viewing environment. It's an excellent TV for watching movies in a dark room. It has one of the best local dimming features on the market, which results in incredibly high contrast with local dimming, so blacks are deep and uniform in a dark room.
It also gets incredibly bright, especially in HDR. Combined with its great local dimming feature, bright highlights in HDR stand out incredibly well. It has an excellent wide color gamut, so movies look vivid and lifelike. It upscales lower-resolution content well, which is great if you have a collection of movies on DVD, and the smart interface has a great selection of apps, so you can easily find your favorite streaming services.
Sadly, due to its relatively quick response time, there's some noticeable stutter in slow-panning shots in movies. There are a few features that can reduce stutter, including motion interpolation, but this introduces other issues, so it's not a perfect solution. Overall, the QN90A is an excellent TV.
The best LED TV for movies we've tested is the Hisense U9DG. It's a unique TV that uses dual cell panel technology, and because of this, it produces the best contrast we've tested on any LED TV, as it displays extremely deep blacks with almost no blooming around bright objects. It looks nearly as good as OLEDs, and you don't get the risk of permanent burn-in.
It's fantastic for watching movies in dark rooms because of its deep blacks, and the full-array local dimming feature is also incredible. It makes bright objects pop a lot, and it doesn't crush any blacks either, so scenes with stars or other small bright objects appear as they should. Its overall HDR peak brightness is just okay, but that's because it loses brightness with larger areas of bright colors, and it's still good enough to provide an excellent HDR experience. It also supports HDR10+ and Dolby Vision content, so you can easily stream your favorite HDR content.
Sadly, it's only available in a 75 inch size, so don't get it if you're limited on space. Also, it's not versatile for other uses as it has a slow response time and low input lag, so it's not good for competitive gaming. The gradient handling is also only decent, and you'll notice banding in scenes with shades of similar colors, which is disappointing. If this doesn't bother you, it's one of the best TVs for movies that we've tested.
The best budget TV for movies we've tested is the Hisense U6G. It's a great overall TV that delivers impressive performance if you want to use it for watching movies. It doesn't have any trouble upscaling lower-resolution content, which is important for watching DVDs and Blu-rays, and it displays native 4k content without any issues. It's also well-built and available in several sizes, so you can get the one you prefer the most.
You can easily stream your favorite movies directly from the built-in Android TV, which is easy-to-use and has a ton of apps you can download through the app store. It removes 24p judder from native apps and 24p sources like Blu-rays, which helps with the appearance of motion in movies, but it doesn't have a motion interpolation feature. Movies look good in the dark because the VA panel displays deep blacks. It has a decent local dimming feature that further improves the picture quality in dark scenes, and it has remarkable black uniformity.
While picture quality is important for watching movies, having the best sound experience enhances the viewing experience. Unfortunately, this TV doesn't support eARC passthrough, so you can't connect sources directly to the TV and play high-quality Dolby Atmos and DTS:X audio. If that's the case, you'll have to connect your sources to a receiver instead. If this isn't a problem for you, this is the best TV for watching movies available for a low cost.
May 06, 2022: Moved the LG C1 OLED to its own category as the 'Best Value OLED TV For Watching Movies', and moved the Samsung QN90A to the 'Best Movie TV for Small Spaces' category.
Mar 08, 2022: Updated text for clarity; added the Hisense U7G and Hisense U6GR to Notable Mentions.
Jan 07, 2022: Added the Hisense U9DG as the 'Best LED TV' and moved the Samsung QN90A to 'Smaller Alternative'; moved the Hisense U8G to Notable Mentions.
Nov 10, 2021: Verified picks for availability and updated text for accuracy; added the TCL 5 Series/S546 2021, TCL 6 Series/R646 2021 QLED, and the LG B1 OLED to Notable Mentions.
Sep 15, 2021: Removed the Sony A80J, Vizio P Series Quantum X 2020, and TCL 5 Series and added the Sony A90J with the LG C1 as 'Cheaper Alternative' for consistency; added the Hisense U7G, Sony X95J, TCL R745, LG QNED90, and TCL 5 Series 2020 to Notable Mentions.
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 TV reviews. 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.