Best Buddy Cop Movies Streaming On Netflix

By Douglas Helm | Published

Everyone loves a good buddy cop movie. They’re usually pretty funny, plus the snappy dialogue and well-directed action sequences keep you entertained throughout. If you’re in the mood for one of these films, Netflix has you covered with these picks.


will smith bright

Okay, so not all of the buddy cop movies on Netflix are home runs, but this one definitely gets points for creativity. Bright follows two cops in a gritty fantasy world where humans and mythical creatures live side by side. Will Smith stars as the human cop, while Joel Edgerton stars as his orc partner.

In Bright, this duo has to protect an elf girl (Noomi Rapace) with a magical wand. While the plot makes it sound like a movie for kids, the David Ayer-directed and Max Landis-written film aims for realism and attempts to address issues like racism and corruption, albeit not in a terribly nuanced way.

The film didn’t get great reviews, but the magical world that it is set in is fairly interesting, and it is a twist on the buddy cop genre that you don’t usually see.

The Happytime Murders

The Happytime Murders continue the trend of taking the buddy cop movie formula and adding fantastical elements to help differentiate it from the crowd.

However, unlike Bright, The Happytime Murders is a comedy film and doesn’t take itself so seriously. In the alternate present of The Happytime Murders, humans and puppets (made by a branch of Jim Henson’s company) co-exist.

The buddy cops in this movie are a human police detective (Melissa McCarthy) and a puppet private investigator (Bill Barretta) who investigate a murder spree of ex-sitcom stars.

With Jim Henson’s company working on the puppets and a solid cast that also includes Joel McHale, Maya Rudolph, Leslie David Baker, and Elizabeth Banks, you would think The Happytime Murders would be better — but it’s not great.

The movie was a box office bomb and was critically panned, but if you have a Netflix subscription and are looking for a goofy comedy with puppets, The Happytime Murders might hit the spot.

Blue Streak

Now we’re getting to some of the relatively solid entries to the buddy cop movies available on Netflix. While Blue Streak isn’t necessarily a renowned film in the genre, Martin Lawrence’s comedic sensibilities make it worth the watch, and the action is solid enough to keep things entertaining.

In Blue Streak, Lawrence stars as a jewel thief who disguises himself as a detective to get back a diamond he left at the police station, leading him to get paired with a real cop (Luke Wilson) to investigate burglaries.

Blue Streak never quite reached the heights of Lawrence’s other buddy cop effort Bad Boys with Will Smith, but it has its own charm.

The solid cast that also includes Dave Chappelle, Peter Greene, Nicole Ari Parker, and William Forsythe helps to elevate slightly above the standard fare. Reviews are mixed on the film overall, so your enjoyment of the film may vary.

Rush Hour 2

buddy cop movies netflix

The above buddy cop movies available on Netflix may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but it’s hard to argue with Rush Hour 2 if you love the buddy cop genre.

It pretty much has everything you could want out of one of these films, with Chris Tucker providing the laughs and Jackie Chan providing top-notch stunts (and laughs too).

This sequel sees Chan’s Chief Inspector Lee and Tucker’s Detective James Carter heading to Hong Kong on vacation, only to get wrapped up in a murder case that involves a Triad crime lord.

Rush Hour 2 didn’t quite live up to the lofty highs of the original, but it’s still a highly entertaining romp. Jackie Chan’s always-impressive stuntwork is on full display, and the script snaps along at a breezy pace, making it the perfect summer watch.

Also, a fun fact you can point out to your friend while watching — the US Secret Service had to destroy fake money made for the film because extras were pocketing it and trying to spend it.

Rush Hour

buddy cop movies netflix

Undoubtedly, one of the best buddy cop movies available on Netflix right now is the original Rush Hour. It has all of the elements of a buddy cop film, but elevated. You get quality humor, quality action, and mismatched cops who have to work together.

Rush Hour stars Jackie Chan and Chris Tucker as the aforementioned mismatched cops, who have to rescue the abducted daughter of a Chinese diplomat. Rush Hour was also the first major Hollywood crossover for Chan, who had made his career doing incredible martial arts films in Hong Kong.

Chan’s frenetic stuntwork and knack for incorporating bits of levity and humor into his fight scenes were perfect for Rush Hour and helped to make it a massive hit. Combined with Tucker’s comedic chops, Rush Hour is one of the most recommendable buddy cop films of all time.