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The Best Recent Movies You've Never Heard Of!

Updated on June 13, 2013

Recent Movies You've Never Heard Of!

Ever year there are a huge number of movies that come out under the radar that the average movie goer just never heard about. This is often not because they aren’t good or ever great movies. Some of my favourite films are those that are known by a relatively small fan base, most with some form of cult following. Whether they were made on a small budget, by students or indie filmmakers, were poorly marketed or were just not suited to the general public, there are plenty of gems out there that deserve to be watched and enjoyed by everybody. For those of you who love movies, take a look at this list and see if you find something that sparks your interest. There is something in this list for everybody.

ALL I ASK is that you don’t judge these movies by their budget, language, picture quality or lack of big name actors/actresses! A great movie is a great movie. No matter how it is made or by whom. I hope you enjoy the list and please let me know what you think of some of them.

NOTE: Any of you who have a NETFLIX account, many of these films will be available to stream instantly on this service, and others can be rented by mail.

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Winters Bone

Some of you, especially those who watch The Oscars, will be asking why this film is on the list.  It was nominated for Best Picture at the most recent Awards and had numerous actors up for awards also.  However, if you walk down the street and ask people if they have ever heard of it, most will tell you they haven’t.  It’s a shame because you will be hard pressed to find a movie with more grit, realism and unbelievable performances (especially by Oscar Nominee John Hawkes).  About a young girl in a very rural town with some dark secrets, who is thrust into real life by the death of her father and the depressed stupor of her mother.  What follows is truly great, and while not full of action packed events, its gritty, realistic and often scary portrayal definitely hits home.

Ink

One of my all time favourite low budget flicks, Ink is a film suggested to me by a good friend of mine which I have loved every since.  It is a fantasy/sci-fi film that serves as a sort of strange blend between The Matrix, Alice in Wonderland and Labyrinth, with some impressive visuals (despite the low budget), a deeper meaning and interesting twists.  It is the story of a troubled business man who has separated himself from his family, and also of his daughter who is taken into an evil “dream land” by the forces of darkness.  Of course, the forces of light are on the case, and these two forces only battle at night while people dream.  The idea sounds a little child-like but I assure you that the story has a much deeper meaning, involving some real like emotions and dark feelings.  It is a movie for the whole family, and is truly sad and uplifting at the same time. 

Heartless

I recently saw this film while blindly browsing my Netflix library, and found that I was pleasantly surprised.  It is a very recent British Horror film about a young man who was born with a horrible birthmark covering much of his face.  His father has died and his life is not going well, due to his depression and lack of confidence.  The rest is a Donnie Darko-esque blend of confusion, strange goings on involving humanoid London gangs, an evil devil-like character and more tragedy and death.  Behind all the confusion and mayhem however, is another deeply emotional tale that leaves much open to interpretation.  For those who don’t like things to be completely black and white I would definitely recommend checking this out.

Tell No One

Another recently discovered film; upon first watch this entered my list as an instant classic.  A French film, about a man who’s wife is brutally murdered but somehow contacts him 8 years later.  This mysterious event opens up a series of events involving murder, conspiracy and surprises.  In terms of action this movie is one of the best out there, with some of the best car and on foot pursuit scenes you are likely to see out there, created on a very modest budget.  To say anything more would be to give too much of the story away, but with great acting, a great soundtrack and a great, suspense filled story, you are unlikely to find a better film out there.  Check it out!

One Week

Going down a notch on the action and suspense meter, this little gem starring Dawson’s Creek’s Joshua Jackson is a film about a young man, soon to be married, who finds out he has cancer and his survival is unlikely.  The film asks the question, “What would you do?”  The protagonist goes on a motorcycle journey across the country, from east to west, seeing sights, meeting people and experiencing new things.  It is a movie about a very sad situation, but also about the beautiful experiences that he experiences as a result of it and the greater respect he has for life.  The most striking thing about the film is it’s realistic portrayal of human emotions and also the effects on the people around a terminally ill person.  It is sad and inspiring and definitely recommended.

EXAM

This film is one with a definite concept that it executes very well.  It is about a group of people, in an exam room, and the objective of the exam is to get hired by a prestigious company by outperforming the other members.  The entire film takes place in one room, with a strange man running the show, a sinister set of rules and a dark undertone to the proceedings.  Throughout the film we learn about the measures people will take to succeed and how far some are willing to go.  There are characters we love, those we hate and some who we aren’t too sure about.  One thing is certain however.  The film is highly entertaining and will keep you guessing until the very end!

Red Riding Trilogy

This British trilogy, is one that most haven’t heard of but it’s great plot and relatively big name cast (Sean Bean of Lord of the Rings and Andrew Garfield of Social Network and The Amazing Spiderman star in the first instalment) make me wonder how this can be so. It is the story of murder combined with police and media corruption, in the rural British county of Yorkshire. It’s small scale makes for the personal nature of what unfolds being even stronger, and throughout the trilogy we truly realize the evil that lays within some people. Don’t look for happy endings here, but if you want to see great acting and a truly suspenseful story, check out this trilogy.

Honorable Mentions

Dead Man’s Shoes – a dark, gritty British slasher film about a man who is pushed too far by local hooligans.

The Ceremony – a low budget chiller, in the same vein as Paranormal Activity, but it my opinion a better film. Probably the least known film on this list.

Welcome - A heart warming and sad story of a refugee who decides to swim the the channel and cross from France to England to see the girl he loves

The Horseman - A violent and dark film about a man who takes revenge on those responsible for his daughters death. NOT for the faint at heart.

Check out Part 2 of my list of great recent movies you've never heard of!

Check out this trailer for one of my favourites - INK

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    • Ebower profile image

      Erin Bower 5 years ago from Georgia

      I love little-known and independent films. I voted this up and awesome!

    • jmartin1344 profile image
      Author

      jmartin1344 5 years ago from Royal Oak, Michigan

      Me too! There are so many gems out there! Thanks!

    • profile image

      Zack 4 years ago

      Here is one for you, "Day watch" and the sequel "Night watch". It's Russian sci fi, dubbed in English, surprisingly addictive. Enjoy.

    • jmartin1344 profile image
      Author

      jmartin1344 4 years ago from Royal Oak, Michigan

      I've actually seen those two, great call, I love them! Are they ever going to release the third in the trilogy?? Because I know it's based on a trilogy of books...

    • citywolf profile image

      Sarah Wolfe 4 years ago from Oregon

      Winter's bone is a great call. I think it's gotta a bit more viewership since Jennifer Lawrence got Hunger games, due in no small part to her performance in the aforementioned.

    • jmartin1344 profile image
      Author

      jmartin1344 4 years ago from Royal Oak, Michigan

      Thanks for reading!

      Agreed - she did the X-Men movie recently too an has more in the cards - I definitely think her performance in Winter's Bone caught some eyes. She was great. Josh Hawkes is my favorite in that movie though... great performance!

    • profile image

      wayne 4 years ago

      Sinners and saints. Most under rated film of the decade

    • Kevina Oyatedor profile image

      kevina oyatedor 3 years ago

      I have not finished Winter's Bone, but overall it is good. Love indie films, because you see the actors in a different. Like Chris Evans in London.

    • jmartin1344 profile image
      Author

      jmartin1344 3 years ago from Royal Oak, Michigan

      I agree! I'd recommend finishing Winter's Bone if you get a chance!

      Thanks for reading!

    • David Trujillo profile image

      David Trujillo Uribe 3 years ago from Medellin, Colombia

      Gonna take a look at Ink, sound like my kind of thing. You like foreign cult movies? I just wrote a hub Rodrigo D No Futuro with the complete movie from youtube. I haven´t been able to download it from anywhere.

    • jmartin1344 profile image
      Author

      jmartin1344 3 years ago from Royal Oak, Michigan

      I love foreign films, I'll check that out!

      Thanks for reading!!

    • David Trujillo profile image

      David Trujillo Uribe 3 years ago from Medellin, Colombia

      Please do. Few foreigners know about this movie

    • profile image

      bustinp 3 years ago

      you should check out water for elephants

    • IslandBites profile image

      IslandBites 3 years ago from Puerto Rico

      Winters bone is a great movie. Nice hub.

    • jmartin1344 profile image
      Author

      jmartin1344 3 years ago from Royal Oak, Michigan

      Thanks IslandBites, I agree!

    • W1totalk profile image

      W1totalk 3 years ago

      I do enjoy good films. I just find in indie movies there are things you have o prepare yourself to see, sometimes good, sometimes bad. I am going to check these movies out. I heard about Winter's Bone. Good article.

    • Inkylips profile image

      Jessica Gilbert 3 years ago

      These are totally my style! I love Indie movies or "small-fan-based" as well

    • jmartin1344 profile image
      Author

      jmartin1344 3 years ago from Royal Oak, Michigan

      Thanks Inkylips! Hope you like some of them!

    • jmartin1344 profile image
      Author

      jmartin1344 3 years ago from Royal Oak, Michigan

      W1totalk, thanks for reading! Hope you like some of them!

    • profile image

      gsurvivor 3 years ago

      I actually heard of One Week, but the others had me baffled, I'll have to check them out now! :)

    • jmartin1344 profile image
      Author

      jmartin1344 3 years ago from Royal Oak, Michigan

      gsurvivor, thanks for reading! Hope you enjoy the movies!

    • Mike Robbers profile image

      Mike Robbers 3 years ago from London

      Another great list James,congrats! I wish more and more people would come along such good and interesting movies..It's a pitty movie like these not being popular...

    • jmartin1344 profile image
      Author

      jmartin1344 3 years ago from Royal Oak, Michigan

      Thanks again Mike! I agree, it's a shame. What is interesting and was good to see, is the development of Winter's Bone because someone finally recognized a small little movie and gave it Oscar consideration. That was a great sign!

    • Thief12 profile image

      Thief12 3 years ago from Puerto Rico

      Although I've heard about some of these, the only one I've seen is Winter's Bone. Pretty good film, BTW.

    • jmartin1344 profile image
      Author

      jmartin1344 3 years ago from Royal Oak, Michigan

      Thanks Thief12!

    • nuffsaidstan profile image

      nuffsaidstan 3 years ago

      Hi, cool hub, seen a few of these but i shall definitely take a look at Ink and Winters Bone, thanks for the recommendations.

    • jmartin1344 profile image
      Author

      jmartin1344 3 years ago from Royal Oak, Michigan

      Thanks nuffsaid, I hope you enjoy them!

    • kenneth avery profile image

      Kenneth Avery 2 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama

      jmartin,

      Great read. Very helpful, informative and great writing. I voted up and

      away on your piece.

      Keep up the great writing and give up for no reason or anyone.

    • jmartin1344 profile image
      Author

      jmartin1344 2 years ago from Royal Oak, Michigan

      Thanks very much kenneth, I appreciate it! Look forward to reading some of your stuff.

    • kenneth avery profile image

      Kenneth Avery 2 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama

      jmmartin,

      You are very welcome. I mean it. You put a lot into this hub. That makes me feel ashamed of how I research my materials.

      Please keep up the fine work. You are a very talented person.

    • jmartin1344 profile image
      Author

      jmartin1344 2 years ago from Royal Oak, Michigan

      Your materials look pretty good to me from what I've read! But I thank you, that means a lot. I shall do so!

    • kenneth avery profile image

      Kenneth Avery 2 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama

      jmartin,

      Great news. And I do invite you to follow me too. It can be bumpy at times, but overall, we will not get any death threats. LOL.

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