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3 foreign films worth watching for people who don't watch foreign films

Updated on October 10, 2014

Foreign films aren't for everyone.

Cinema is like any other art, it's especially reflective of the culture it was created in. This can create a very different experience for moviegoers who aren't familiar with the culture the film is from. I recommend these three films for people who aren't necessarily familiar with foreign cinema, but would like to begin checking out what other nations' filmmakers have to offer.

All three have fantastic production values, accessible stories regardless of language barrier, and solid acting.

Amelie

What it is

Amelie follows the tale of a young Parisian woman whose quiet demeanor belies an incredible imagination and a gentle soul not unfamiliar with pain and tragedy. When she discovers the fulfillment that anonymously helping others brings her, she realizes her life's true calling and finds love in the process.

Why it's worth watching

Amelie's story is sweet and whimsical, yet heart wrenching in all the right places. Despite it being a lighthearted tale at its core, the film's immersive tone places you squarely in Amelie's frame of mind, and you'll truly experience her coming of age as a quirky, naïve, but wickedly clever and infinitely one of a kind young woman.

Amelie Official Trailer

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Kikujiro

What it is

Kikujiro is the story of a boy who embarks on a journey to find his wayward mother. He is accompanied along the way by Kikujiro: a grumpy, hardheaded ex-gangster, and also an

unlikely mentor, friend, and protector. Famed international filmmaker Takeshi Kitano (aka

Beat Takeshi) directs as well as stars as the titular character in this 1999 Japanese Dramedy.

Why it's worth watching

Kikujiro is genuinley funny. Despite it being a wholly Japanese film with all the cultural quirks that entails, it's entirely relatable to any audience and outright hilarious at times. When it's not busy making you guffaw, the film juxtaposes such a sweetness with a bitter sadness that it'll leave you wanting to watch it again and again to get to know Masao and Kikujiro better.

Kikujiro Trailer

Buy Kikujiro today! - Own it on DVD, or stream it instantly on Amazon Instant Video!

Kikujiro
Kikujiro

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Run Lola Run

What it is

Run Lola Run is a frenetic, action pumped story about choice and causality. Our heroine, Lola is tasked with saving her boyfriend, Manni. You see, Manni is a lowlife and hangs out with other lowlifes, and now he owes a particularly dangerous lowlife a large sum of money, which of course he has lost. If he doesn't deliver the cash in 20 minutes, he's a deadman. Manni's desperate gambit is to rob a store at gunpoint. Lola must race across Berlin on foot to stop him from making the stupidest decision in his life while at the same time figuring out how to bail him out of his 100,000 Deustchmark mistake.

Why it's worth watching

A good film will make you think, a GREAT film leaves you thinking about it years after the fact. Run Lola Run does just that as it explores the tendrils of possibility that could exist had we made a different choice at a consequential moment. It's something all of us have considered at one point or another, and Run Lola Run lays out this particular mindscrew in expert form.

Run Lola Run Trailer

Buy Run Lola Run today! - This rare gem is available on DVD.

Buy it while you still can!

Run Lola Run
Run Lola Run

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