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. Look for a TV that can deliver deep blacks and has rich colors and 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 bought and tested more than 400 TVs, and below are our recommendations for the best 4k TVs for movies you can buy. See our picks for the best OLED TVs, the best smart TVs, and the best 4k TVs. Most brands have started releasing their 2023 lineups, so vote on which ones you want us to buy and test. To learn more about the 2023 models, check out our 2023 TV lineup page.
The best 4k TV for movies we've tested is the Sony A95K OLED. Its nearly infinite contrast ratio makes it a fantastic TV for watching movies in a dark room. This results in deep, inky blacks and bright highlights, with no distracting blooming around bright areas of the scene. Sony TVs are well respected for their accurate picture quality, and this TV is no exception. Its excellent processing capabilities deliver a true movie experience that respects the content creator's intent, with very little banding in areas of similar color.
HDR movies look incredible on this TV thanks to its high peak brightness in HDR, near-infinite contrast ratio, and wide color gamut. Colors look vivid and lifelike, and bright specular highlights stand out. It also supports features like Dolby Vision and DTS:X audio, ensuring you get the best movie experience possible. It's compatible with Sony's BRAVIA CORE streaming service, which offers a wide selection of movies to stream at a much higher bit rate than most streaming services, ensuring your movies look the best they possibly can.
If you find the A95K a bit too pricey, but you still want a Sony OLED TV for its amazing image processing, consider the cheaper Sony A80L/A80CL OLED. It's a big step down in terms of overall brightness, and its WOLED panel isn't nearly as colorful as the QD-OLED panel in the A95K, but its processing is splendid, and it still looks amazing in a dark room.
If you want a TV that looks amazing in dark and bright rooms, check out the Sony X93L/X93CL. It's an impressive TV for watching movies, and although it doesn't have the same deep, inky blacks as the Sony A95K OLED or LG C3 OLED, it still looks great in a dark room. There's some blooming around bright specular highlights in dark scenes, but it also gets extremely bright, so bright flashes of light in HDR stand out incredibly well, and content looks fantastic even in the brightest of rooms.
Like the top picks, the Sony supports Dolby Vision HDR and Dolby and DTS advanced audio formats. HDR movies look incredible, thanks to the wide color gamut and high peak brightness. Plus, you get Sony's typical amazing image processing, so movies look fantastic whether they're from DVDs, Blu-rays, or streaming services. This TV's unofficial predecessor, the Sony X95K, is almost as good, but it tends to sell for a slightly higher price, so it's not worth the purchase over the newer model.
If you like the deep, inky blacks that only an OLED can produce but want to spend a bit less, the best upper mid-range TV for watching movies is the LG C3 OLED. Like the Sony A95K OLED, it displays perfect blacks in dark rooms without blooming, offering a fantastic movie-watching experience. Even though the Sony has brighter and more vibrant colors than the LG while also having slightly better picture processing, the LG's very good HDR peak brightness is certainly enough to make smaller highlights stand out. The LG is a better value and is available in many more sizes than the Sony, but it's a step down when it comes purely to movie watching.
The LG removes 24p judder from any source, which helps with the appearance of motion, and it can interpolate low-frame-rate content up to 120 fps. It supports Dolby Atmos audio passthrough, and unlike its predecessor, the LG C2 OLED, it also supports DTS audio formats, which many Blu-rays use. It also has better image processing than the older model, as LG has been working very hard to improve it on their newer releases, which shows. So, while you could save some money by getting a C2 on clearance, the newer model is the clear winner when watching movies.
If you want something cheaper than our top three picks that still delivers an excellent movie-watching experience, check out the Hisense U8H. It has a fantastic contrast ratio for deep blacks in dark rooms. The Mini LED local dimming feature is impressive as it improves the contrast while making small highlights stand out, but there's just a bit of blooming around bright objects. Its HDR brightness is also excellent, but it displays most scenes in HDR brighter than they should be, so it doesn't exactly show content the way its creator intended.
Unlike many TVs, it supports both Dolby Vision and HDR10+ formats, meaning you can watch your favorite HDR content in their available form. It also supports Dolby Atmos and DTS:X passthrough if you want to connect a soundbar or receiver. Although it's an amazing TV, it's less powerful than the Sony X93L/X93CL, so there's more banding in areas of similar color, and motion isn't as smooth. Its successor, the Hisense U8K, is currently undergoing testing in our labs, so stay tuned to know how it compares to the older model.
The best budget TV for watching movies we've tested is the TCL 5 Series/S555 2022 QLED. It's a great TV for the price, with superb contrast resulting in deep blacks in a dark room, fantastic black uniformity, and very little blooming around bright objects. It's also very good for watching movies in HDR, as it has a wide color gamut and decent color volume, so HDR content looks vivid and lifelike. It has just okay peak brightness in HDR, so bright highlights don't stand out as well as they do on more expensive TVs like the Hisense U8H.
It runs the Roku TV interface, which is rather simplistic but easy to use, and it has a great selection of streaming apps, including many free channels. It removes judder from 24p sources like an Apple TV or Blu-ray player, ensuring a smooth movie-watching experience, and although it has a quick response time, there's just a bit of stutter when watching movies.
Aug 24, 2023: Replaced the Samsung QN90C/QN90CD QLED with the Sony X93L/X93CL as the 'Best Bright Room TV for Watching Movies', added a few Notable Mentions, and refreshed the text for accuracy and consistency.
Jun 28, 2023: Replaced the LG C2 OLED with the LG C3 OLED as the 'Best Mid-Range TV For Watching Movies', added the Samsung S90C OLED and LG G3 OLED to the Notable Mentions, and refreshed the text for accuracy and consistency.
Nov 21, 2022: Completely restructured the article, replacing the 2021 models with 2022 picks, as they're more widely available and generally outperform last year's models. Added the Sony A95K OLED as the top pick.
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.