17 Best Con Movies and Shows on Netflix (April 2024)

Con stories are stylish, extremely engaging, and super fun to watch. Featuring devious plots, scheming tricksters, deft hands, shark eyes, and gleeful twists, these flicks leave us stunned yet satisfied and surprised. Several such films are also inspired by true stories, which adds to the intrigue and makes it even more entertaining to watch the story unfold. Con movies are known to surpass genres and are often mixed with comedy, action, or both to make things more interesting. Netflix has an extensive collection of movies and TV shows about con stories, presenting a varied experience to the audience while keeping them thoroughly entertained.

17. The Masked Scammer (2022)

This documentary film shows how a guy named Gilbert Chikli, originally from Paris, manipulated and conned elites from all across Europe and amassed over 100 million euros. His cons began in 2005, and he used terrorism as his ploy, sometimes asking his victims for money to rescue hostages and sometimes to fund anti-terrorist organizations. He successfully impersonated now-former French Defense Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian. Chikli’s cons ended in 2017 after he mistakenly called up Sophie Grenier, who, at the time, was the financial director of France’s Chamber of Commerce and Industry. After sniffing that something was amiss, she alerted the cops, who eventually arrested him. He is currently serving a 1-year prison sentence. Directed by Dominic Sivyer and Yvann Yagchi, ‘The Masked Scammer’ features interviews with the conman’s victims and accomplices to give us a clear picture of his crimes. You can watch the documentary here.

16. Lords of Scam (2021)

Directed by Guillaume Nicloux, this French documentary follows the rise and fall of the scammers who took advantage of the EU (European Union) carbon quoto system that allowed companies to buy carbon credits from other companies in case the former exceeded their carbon emission quotas. This system was turned into a scheme in 2008 by multiple company owners who decided to sell their credits to each other and transfer the VAT (value-added tax) to offshore accounts, making millions extra. ‘Lords of Scam’ provides us with an explanation behind the whole scam and how it came apart. It can be streamed here.

15. Trust No One: The Hunt for the Crypto King (2022)

Directed by Luke Sewell, ‘Trust No One: The Hunt for the Crypto King’ is a documentary film that explores the mysterious death of 30-year-old Gerry Cotton, founder and owner of Canada’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, Quadriga CX. He took to his grave US$190 million worth of assets in cryptocurrency, all of which belonged to his customers. No keycodes, no passwords, nothing was left behind that could be used to get the money. Through interviews, archive footage, and staged incidents, the film addresses the different theories people have regarding his death and shows how they are looking for a way to track him down (if he is still alive) or their own money. You can watch it here.

14. Yucatán (2018)

Clayderman is a pianist on the luxury cruise ship, MS Sovereign, which he also calls his home. His wife, Verónica, also follows him on his travels, and the couple appears to be making a handsome living. However, in actuality, they are both con artists, always on the lookout for an easy target from which to swindle money. One fine day, the pair notices their old estranged acquaintance, Lucas, board the ship. Sniffing out a plan in action, they keep a close eye on proceedings and learn that one of the passengers, Antonio, is an old baker who just won a 16-million-dollar lottery. Determined to swindle the old man out of his money, the couple goes up against their nemesis in an ultimate faceoff to determine the better thief. Feel free to check out the movie here.

13. The Tinder Swindler (2022)

Based on the true story of Israeli conman Simon Leviev, ‘The Tinder Swindler’ chronicles how he duped women out of thousands of dollars while leading a life of luxury himself. Born as Shimon Hayut, Simon or Shimon contacted women worldwide through the dating app Tinder. Once he matched with a lady, Simon would take her out on an expensive date, drive her around in an expensive car, and give her a vibe of him being rich and famous. Simon left no stone unturned in his efforts to impress women and even had some of them fly on his private jet.

Once he got the woman completely enamored, Simon would make up a story about how he was attacked and his security team was not allowing him to use his credit cards. The woman would then be asked to send Simon exorbitant amounts in exchange for a verbal promise. However, Simon never intended to keep such promises and instead would send fake bank transfer details, ruining the victim financially. ‘The Tinder Swindler’ even contains real-life interviews with a few of his victims and shows how some of them hatched a plan to give him a taste of his own medicine. You may watch it here.

12. Inventing Anna (2022)

‘Inventing Anna’ is an eye-opening show that investigates the life and crimes of con artist Anna Sorokin. Anna, who gained popularity through Jessica Pressler’s article ‘How Anna Delvey Tricked New York’s Party People,’ is a Russian native who relocated to New York in 2013 before conning her way into the upper tiers of society. Similarly, the show documents how she made New York’s elite believe she was a German heiress before providing fake papers indicating she was the sole owner of a massive trust fund. Moreover, the show even portrays her using the “German Heiress” persona to encash hundreds of fraudulent checks and get huge loans without any security. Besides, while ‘Inventing Anna’ talks about Anna Sorokin’s plans to establish an art-themed club for the rich and famous, it also chronicles her arrest and eventual conviction. You can check out ‘Inventing Anna’ here.

11. Fyre: The Greatest Party That Never Happened (2019)

Fyre: The Greatest Party That Never Happened‘ premiered on Netflix in 2019 and documents the failed Fyre Festival of 2017. This documentary chronicles the events of the famous scam where the festival was first promoted as a luxurious musical concert to be held on a lavish private island. Instagram posts and social media channels advertised it as a dreamy vacation where customers who bought tickets could party with supermodels and champagne and stay in posh villas in the spectacular Bahamas. However, the entire show was a farce. When the guests arrived, the only scenes they witnessed were empty tents and nil transportation. The smug host McFarland, sinking in unpaid debts, was finally arrested and put behind bars. This documentary explores the incidents that led to this disaster. You can stream it here.

10. Race 2 (2013)

Our next entry on the list is ‘Race 2’, an Indian action flick that was released in 2013 and is a sequel to the 2008-released movie, ‘Race.’ The second installment picks up the story from the parent film and introduces us to Ranvir, who travels to Turkey, meets the billionaire gangster named Armaan, and befriends him. However, later on, we learn that this entire arrangement was a con scheme hatched by Ranvir to exact revenge on Armaan, who was responsible for the death of his wife and partner. To be a part of this con game, you can stream the movie here.

9. Pickpockets (2018)

Released in 2018, ‘Pickpockets’ follows the lives of two teenage criminals and best friends, namely Fresh and Doggy, who resort to petty crimes on the streets of Bogota to earn their daily livelihood. Their method mostly involves robbing wealthy individuals and bringing their wins to the boss, after which they receive a very small cut. Although they are good at their jobs, recently, they have resorted to committing certain acts of violence, because of which they become easy targets for the cops.

Fortunately for the pair, they come in contact with the expert pickpocket Chucho. He notices their potential and offers to guide them. Along with a third recruit, Juana, the trio swiftly begins to score more items, ranging from jewelry and tablets to huge wads of cash. They still need to give a large share of their earnings to Chucho and, hence, gradually plan to push him out of the picture. This proves to be a huge challenge and tests Fresh and Doggy’s friendship, as both of them hold different views towards life. While Fresh uses his cash to help his family, Doggy just wants to become rich. Now, they have to face bigger threats as they realize that huge money comes with even greater risks. A classic combo of crime and con artist drama, ‘Pickpockets’ is a must-watch. You can do so here.

8. No Good Nick (2019)

‘No Good Nick’ is a comedy web television series created by David H. Steinberg and Keetgi Kogan. Starring Siena Agudong, Lauren Lindsey Donzis, Kalama Epstein, Melissa Joan Hart, and Sean Astin in prominent roles, the show debuted on Netflix on April 15, 2019. It centers around a family whose life takes a drastic turn when they meet a street-smart young girl who appears on their doorsteps and claims to be a distant relative. As the summary reads, ‘No Good Nick’ is about 13-year-old Nicole, aka Nick, who “infiltrates a family intending to get revenge on them for unknowingly ruining her life.” As she enters the family’s life, she starts developing bonds and affection for the members. So, is she able to carry out her plans? Or do emotions come in the way? You can watch the series here to find out!

7. The Polka King (2017)

This biographical drama centers on Grammy Award-nominated polka band leader/songwriter Jan Lewan who pulled off the greatest scandal in polka history. As a part of his Ponzi scheme, he conned millions off more than 400 investors across 22 states while running a gift shop in Pennsylvania. He was convicted of the same in 2004. Directed by Maya Forbes, the film stars Jack Black as Jan Lewan. The cast also includes Jenny Slate, Jason Schwartzman, Jacki Weaver, Vanessa Bayer, and J. B. Smoove. You can watch ‘The Polka King’ here.

6. Made You Look: A True Story About Fake Art (2020)

‘Made You Look: A True Story About Fake Art’ is a documentary film that showcases an $80 million scandal involving one of America’s oldest art galleries, Knoedler, which shocked the art world. Directed by Barry Avrich, the documentary shows how Glafira Rosales, an art fraudster, made millions by selling fake paintings to art collectors and even museums at Knoedler since 2001, all of whom believed that the paintings were authentic, thanks to Knoedler’s 165-year reputation. In truth, the paintings were forged by a guy named Pei-Shen Qian, who was living in Queens. This revelation of the scandal shut Knoedler down forever in 2011 and completely destroyed the reputation of the gallery’s director, Ann Freedman. The people whom we see and hear in the documentary include Ann Freedman, along with news reporters, lawyers, art collectors, and others who were subjected to the scandal, considered the largest art scandal in the history of the U.S. You can stream the film here.

5. Madoff: The Monster of Wall Street (2023)

This 4-part true crime docu-series is based on the rise, actions, and arrest of Bernie Madoff, an American criminal financier, who is the apparent mastermind of the largest Ponzi scheme the world has seen till now, one estimated to be $64.8 billion in assets of his clients. Through archive footage and interviews from investigators, whistleblowers, and journalists, among others involved in the case directly or indirectly, ‘Madoff: The Monster of Wall Street’ throws light on Madoff and how he pulled off the frauds that spanned decades. You can watch it here.

4. I Care a Lot (2020)

‘I Care a Lot’ follows con artist Marla Grayson, who employs an ingenious plan to get rich. Although she poses as a caregiver for old people, she eventually puts them in assisted living facilities before convincing the courts to give her legal guardianship. Hence, while the elders remain under the influence of drugs, Marla is free to sell off their assets and properties for personal gain. Incidentally, the con artist believes she has hit the jackpot when Dr. Karen Amos introduces her to incredibly wealthy retiree Jennifer Peterson. On top of it, she executes the con perfectly and gains guardianship over Jennifer. However, things go haywire once Marla realizes that Jennifer Peterson is an assumed identity, and with most people lying about their real selves, she begins fearing for her life. You can watch ‘I Care a Lot’ here.

3. Dynasty (2017-2022)

‘Dynasty,’ an American drama TV series, is a reboot of the 1980s show of the same name. Created by Josh Schwartz, Stephanie Savage, and Sallie Patrick, the show centers around the Carrington family. When Fallon Carrington discovers that her billionaire father, Blake, is engaged to her arch-enemy Cristal, she is unhappy. Cristal and Fallon both work at the Carrington family company. Therefore, to sabotage the engagement, she hatches a plan. But unluckily for Fallon, her plot backfires, and she loses her promotion. Now, more determined than ever, she partners with Blake’s nemesis and Jeff Comby, a former employee, to plan some new schemes.

On the other hand, Cristal’s nephew, Sam, arrives, and he develops a romantic relationship with Fallon’s brother Steven. Again, when a former lover of Cristal is found mysteriously dead, the Carringtons are forced to come together and present a united front before everyone. But this arrangement does not last long. Soon, Blake’s ex-wife, Alexis, returns to the mansion with an agenda of her own. You may watch the show here to find out what follows.

2. Lupin (2021 -)

Image Credit: Emmanuel Guimier/Netflix

A captivating French thriller series created by George Kay and François Uzan, ‘Lupin’ tells the story of Assane Diop. Assane’s father was falsely charged with theft by his boss, Hubert Pellegrini, and sent to prison, where he died when Assane was just 14. Twenty-five years later, Assane returns to take revenge on Hubert as a pro-con artist/gentleman thief after being inspired by a book he read on Arsène Lupin, a fictional thief created by French writer Maurice Leblanc. The series shows how Assane uses his talents of deceit and thievery to carry out heists and, in the process, exposes Hubert’s crimes as well. The cast of the show includes Omar Sy as Assane and Hervé Pierre as Hubert, along with Shirine Boutella, Ludmilla Makowski, Soufiane Guerrab, Ludivine Sagnier, and Clotilde Hesme. You can watch the series here.

1. The Puppet Master: Hunting the Ultimate Conman (2022)

Directed by Sam Benstead and Gareth Johnson, this three-part docu-series reveals the exploits of British conman Robert Hendy-Freegard, who posed as an MI5 agent and stole money from their victims by manipulating them psychologically. He did this from 1990 to 2002, which was the year he was finally caught by the police. He even committed theft and kidnapping, for which he was sentenced to life imprisonment in 2005. Eventually and shockingly, he was released in 2009 after the Court of Appeal discarded the kidnapping charge, stating that persuading someone to go from one place to another, though is a fraud, doesn’t stand for kidnapping. Compelling reconstructions of events underscored by crisp storytelling make this docu-series a must-watch. You can do so right here.

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