“Once you overcome the 1-inch-tall barrier of subtitles, you will be introduced to so many more amazing things,” – Bong Joon-Ho.
The Oscar-winning director from South Korea, Bong Joon-Ho, famously attacked the Hollywood subtitle fear, in his speech at the Oscars when his South Korean film Parasite won the Best Picture Award.
Bong Joon-Ho’s quote holds a lot of truth; by getting past the stigma of subtitles, you can open yourself to a wide range of films, cultures and experiences.
So, whether you are trying to relax with a good film, or you just need a bit of a change, here are 5 incredible foreign language films to add to your watch list.
Directed by Bong Joon-Ho, Parasite depicts the thrilling and tragic tale of the class divide in South Korea, by following a poor working-class family as one by one through a series of scams and lies they become employed by a wealthy, however gullible upper-class woman.
This film will shock you, beginning as one thing and turning out to be another, with uncovered truths and secrets hidden beneath. You may think that you know where Parasite is going, but in reality, it will leave you astonished at the unveiling of events.
Available to download on Amazon for 10 euro.
Black 47 (2018)
One of the most beautiful, but immensely sad Irish language dramas to ever be produced, Black 47 tells the tale of an unlikely hero in the background set of the Irish famine as he sets out for revenge after the tragic death of his family. One of the most gut-wrenching things you will ever watch, you’ll be left wanting a revolution and a cry.
Isi und Ossi (2020)
If you are in the mood for classic rom-com flick, then the German production Isi und Ossi is ideal for you. The perfect tale of the strangers, the rich privileged girl and the rough boy from the wrong part of town who meet in strange circumstances and agree to help each other out by fake-dating. But of course, in between the star-crossed lovers, a romance can always blossom, however are their differences too much for them to handle?
Available now on Netflix.
The incredibly beautiful French romantic comedy, depicts the all-encompassing early contemporary Parisian life, following the story of Amélie who strives to help the stories of others around her. However, her matchmaking and reuniting of the people around her is only a front to hide from her own isolation.
The charming and underrated film, has one of the most beautiful sound tracks ever made, composed entirely by the gifted Yann Tiersen and is available to download on Amazon.
The Gods Must Be Crazy (1980)
The Gods Must be Crazy, is a South African comedy set in Botswana, which was funded entirely by local organisations. After its huge success, an official sequel was released by Columbia Pictures.
The Gods Must be Crazy tells a whimsical tale of what happens when Western civilisation meets the Aboriginal life of the bushmen in the heart of the Kalahari Desert. When a Coke bottle is thrown carelessly from a plane above, the bushmen with no knowledge of the world around them, assume it is a present from God, and make use of it until the tribe begin to argue over it. Xi, the courageous protagonists, decides he shall throw it off the edge of the earth, where his paths collide with outside world in the most hilarious of ways.
Available on Amazon.
Are there any other foreign language films we should add to our watch list?