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Top 5 Foreign Language Films

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by Eleanor Healing (subscribe)
I'm a student currently living in Leeds.
Published September 12th 2013
Still too underrated
1. A Very Long Engagement

Audrey Tautou is radiant in this historical drama by Jean-Pierre Jeunet. It tells the story of Mathilde, a young woman who refuses to believe that her fiance, Manech, has been killed during the First World War. So begins her incredible journey to find out exactly what happened on that fateful day. The whole film looks and feels like a sepia photo, and the twists and turns of Mathilde's journey keep your head and heart engrossed in the story. No spoilers here, but the ending will break your heart.

Source: Warner Independent Pictures


2. A Royal Affair

This intriguing and heartbreaking tale is based on the tragic, true story of the love-affair between Queen Caroline of Denmark and the court physician, Johann Struensee. This film not only dramatises the turbulent era perfectly, but offers explanations and different viewpoints not always available in the history books. Mads Mikkelsen gives a very raw and human depiction of Struensee, a controversial historical figure, while Alicia Vikander lights up the screen as Caroline. Mikkel Følsgaard also gives a remarkable performance as the mentally-ill King Christian VII of Denmark.

Copyright: Zentropa Entertainments


3. Vincere

Based on the mysterious story of Ida Dalser, a woman who was institutionalised after claiming to be the wife of Benito Mussolini, this film gives an alternative view. A view that considers the idea that Mussolini himself may have been the 'mad' one, and that Ida was in fact, truly his wife, scorned and rejected.

Copyright: IFC Films


4. Bad Education

A powerful film by Pedro Almodovar, Bad Education is set against the backdrop of the creation of a film and the reunion of two former lovers. The film delves into the themes of trauma, sexuality and the upsetting cases of child abuse in the Catholic Church, and is not for those who are easily upset.

Source: Sony Pictures Classics


5. Tsotsi

A brilliant South African film exploring the hardships of township existence. Tsotsi is a man from the townships, who has been swept up into a life of crime. His morals are all questioned however, when a botched-up burglary leaves him caring for a baby separated from its mother. The namesake character is a brilliant anti-hero, and the whole story will leave a its impression on you.

Copyright: Miramax Films
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Why? Foreign language films are still too underrated.
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