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10 Netflix Movies and Shows For When You Need a Dose of Small Town Charm

These movies and shows feature small towns in Connecticut, Texas, Colorado and more!


While we love movies and shows set in glamorous cities like New York or LA as much as the next person, there’s something particularly special about watching things set in small towns. Small Town Charm on the screen offer an escapist sense of coziness that serves as a welcome respite from the many stresses of everyday life.

It may surprise you to learn that Netflix has many small town movies and shows to choose from. In addition to typical genres like comedy and drama, the streamer also offers countless “secret codes.” Think of them as micro-genres geared to any number of hyper-specific tastes.

Whether you like “Action With a Side of Romance,” “Irreverent TV Comedies” or “Supernatural Soaps,” to name just a few, there’s a secret code out there catering to your most niche interests.

If you’re looking to kick back with a good old fashioned tale of country living, Netflix has a code for that! Read on for some of our favorite movies and shows in their “Small Town Charm” category.

Netflix small town charm movies

1. The Land of Steady Habits (2018)

In this smartly written comedy, a recently divorced man (Ben Mendelsohn) in suburban Connecticut attempts to fight off the malaise of middle age by quitting his job and making a series of questionable decisions. Connie Britton, of Friday Night Lights fame, plays his love interest, and the film perfectly captures the existential crises often hidden beneath the surface of seemingly idyllic small towns.

Fun fact: the quirky title comes from a nickname for Connecticut.

Click through to watch The Land of Steady Habits.

Ben Mendelsohn in 'The Land of Steady Habits' 2018
Ben Mendelsohn in The Land of Steady Habits (2018)Netflix

2. Dumplin’ (2018) Small Town Charm on Netflix

Dumplin’ follows the trials and tribulations of a teen girl, Willowdean (Danielle Macdonald) whose mom (Jennifer Aniston) just so happens to be a former beauty pageant queen. Willowdean struggles with her weight, and when she decides to enter a pageant as a form of protest, she gets a lesson in self-confidence she never could’ve imagined.

This heartwarming story, set in small town Texas, is filled with southern charm, and even features a soundtrack of songs by Dolly Parton.

Click through to watch Dumplin’.

Danielle Macdonald and Jennifer Aniston in 'Dumplin'' 2018
Danielle Macdonald and Jennifer Aniston in Dumplin’ (2018)Bob Mahoney / Netflix

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3. Along for the Ride (2022) Small Town Charm on Netflix

A picturesque beachside town makes the ideal setting for this lovely teen tale, in which a shy, late-blooming recent high school grad, Auden (Emma Pasarow) with insomnia meets a handsome boy (Belmont Cameli) one sleepless night, and strikes up a tentative relationship.

The movie conjures up all the potent emotions of youth, and features two of our favorite stars, Andie MacDowell and Dermot Mulroney, as Auden’s parents.

Click through to watch Along for the Ride.

Emma Pasarow and Andie MacDowell in 'Along for the Ride' 2022
Emma Pasarow and Andie MacDowell in Along for the Ride (2022)Emily V. Aragones/Netflix

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4. American Graffiti (1973)

If you like some nostalgia with your small town charm, American Graffiti is ideal viewing. Before he changed the world forever with Star Wars, George Lucas made this coming of age hangout movie that drew heavily from his early ’60s upbringing in a sleepy enclave of California. The portrayal of teens driving around, socializing and trying to figure out what’s next on the final night of summer vacation in 1962 still captivates today.

Keep your eye out from appearances by pre-fame icons like Suzanne Somers, Mackenzie Phillips and Harrison Ford!

Click through to watch American Graffiti.

Candy Clark in 'American Graffiti' 1973
Candy Clark in American Graffiti (1973)Bettmann/Getty

5. Our Souls at Night (2017)

Our Souls at Night is the rare movie to take the emotions of seniors seriously. Legendary actors Robert Redford and Jane Fonda play neighbors in a quaint Colorado town. Both of them have recently lost their spouses, and are struggling with loneliness, so they decide to start platonically sleeping together. The film provides a simple but beautiful showcase for the tricky emotions that arise as we grow older and experience loss.

Click through to watch Our Souls at Night.

Robert Redford and Jane Fonda in 'Our Souls at Night' 2017
Robert Redford and Jane Fonda in Our Souls at Night (2017)Kerry Brown/Netflix

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Netflix small town charm TV shows

1. Gilmore Girls (2000 — 2007)

Gilmore Girls is beloved for its witty dialogue and storybook setting in the fictional small town of Stars Hollow, Connecticut. Centered on a young single mom (Lauren Graham) raising her precocious teen daughter (Alexis Bledel), the show strikes the ideal balance of humor and heart, and it’s easy to see why it has one of the most devoted fanbases of any ’00s series.

Click through to watch Gilmore Girls.

Alexis Bledel and Lauren Graham in 'Gilmore Girls' 2000 Small Town Charm on Netflix
Alexis Bledel and Lauren Graham in Gilmore Girls (2000)Warner Bros./Hulton Archive/Getty

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2. The Ranch (2016 — 2020) Small Town Charm on Netflix

With his sumptuous ‘stache, resonant voice and sly expression, Sam Elliott has been making us swoon for decades. In this hilarious sitcom, he’s perfectly cast as the patriarch of a dysfunctional Colorado ranching family.

The show comes from the creators of Two and a Half Men, and brings the same dynamic of familial chaos and broad humor to an intriguing heartland setting.

Click through to watch The Ranch.

Sam Elliott in 'The Ranch' 2017 Small Town Charm on Netflix
Sam Elliott in The Ranch (2017)Greg Gaynei/Netflix

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3. Anne With an E (2017 — 2019) Small Town Charm on Netflix

Anne of Green Gables is a childhood classic beloved by many generations. This picturesque Canadian adaptation vividly brings the plucky redheaded orphan, Anne Shirley (Amybeth McNulty), to life, and while there are plenty of old-fashioned, escapist elements, it also doesn’t shy away from exploring some of the more complex aspects of 19th-century small town existence.

Click through to watch Anne With an E.

Amybeth McNulty in 'Anne With an E' 2019 Small Town Charm on Netflix
Amybeth McNulty in Anne With an E (2019)Ken Woroner/Netflix

4. Good Witch (2015 — 2021) Small Town Charm on Netflix

This Hallmark series stars Catherine Bell as Cassie Nightingale, a widowed witch raising her teen daughter (Bailee Madison) and navigating the ins and outs of life, love, family and magic in a sleepy town. If you like supernatural stories that are more sweet than scary, Good Witch is sure to delight you.

Click through to watch Good Witch.

Catherine Bell in 'Good Witch' 2018 Small Town Charm on Netflix
Catherine Bell in Good Witch (2018)Hallmark/MovieStillsDB

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5. Sweet Magnolias (2020 — Present)

There’s nothing like a good tale of gal pals. The name Sweet Magnolias refers to a trio of longtime BFFs (JoAnna Garcia Swisher, Brooke Elliott and Heather Headley) in South Carolina as they go through all kinds of dramas in their personal lives.

The show, which will be airing a new season later this year, will make you want to laugh, cry and call your old friends to catch up.

Click through to watch Sweet Magnolias.

Left to right: Joanna Garcia Swisher, Brooke Elliott and Heather Headley in 'Sweet Magnolias' 2022 Small Town Charm on Netflix
Left to right: Joanna Garcia Swisher, Brooke Elliott and Heather Headley in Sweet Magnolias (2022)Netflix
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