10 Foreign Films And Shows To Binge That You'll Be Thinking About For Weeks

10 Foreign Films And Shows To Binge That You'll Be Thinking About For Weeks

If you haven't watched Portrait of a Lady on Fire yet, what are you doing with your life?

10 Foreign Films And Shows To Binge That You'll Be Thinking About For Weeks

I try to expand my knowledge of other cultures and countries through their media all the time. I listen to foreign music, I learn bits and pieces of other languages, I pay attention to international news, and love to watch films and shows from other countries. I've watched my fair share of K-dramas and I love French cinema, but I don't have many people to talk to them about because not many people in the United States are into shows and movies in other languages. As for me, I can't get enough, and I'm here to spill all the tea on the best foreign films and dramas that everyone will enjoy and remember forever, regardless of the language.

Portrait of a Lady on Fire drew my best friend and I in and never let us go.

portrait of a lady on fire

Portrait of a Lady on Fire (the original French title being Portrait de la jeune fille en feu) was released in 2019 and I heard all my fellow French students raving about it before I broke and finally decided to watch it. This French sapphic film is based in the 1700s and is about a woman named Marianne who is commissioned to paint a wedding portrait of an unassuming woman named Héloïse who refuses to let anyone paint her, being that she does not want to be married to a man she does not know. Eventually, the two of them fall in love, but they know they are unable to be together and have to go down separate paths. It really is a heartbreaking story, but it's so beautiful. My best friend and I watched this movie together and it was all we could think and talk about for a week. I still go back and watch it every once in a while.

You can watch on Hulu with English subtitles.

It's Okay, That's Love is perfect for those of us who love psychology and huge plot twists.

its okay thats love

It's Okay, That's Love (the romanized title being Gwaenchanhah, Sarangiya in Korean) is a drama about a psychiatrist named Haesoo and radio DJ named Jaeyeol, who are constantly butting heads, but end up having to live together. They both have their fair share of past trauma and confide in one another whilst falling in love. We find out that Jaeyeol is schizophrenic and he, along with the other characters, fight the battle of figuring out what is reality and what is not. This still holds the crown as my favorite Korean drama ever and I highly recommend every single person watch it.

You can watch it on Viki for free with English subtitles.

Parasite didn't win Academy Awards for no reason.

parasite movie

I'm sure you heard the uproar about the Korean film called Parasite (the romanized title being Gisaengchung), which won four Oscars this past year, as well as many other major awards around the globe. Well, let me just say that they were well deserved! I watched this movie when I heard about the nominations it had received and it constantly had me on the edge of my seat. This tragicomedy is based around a poor family, the Kim's, finding their way to become employed by the very wealthy family, the Park's. The movie is all about class discrimination and in some ways, was very relatable, despite it being based in a different country, society, and economy. We're all human, after all. On another note, this movie is rated R for some violence and sexual content.

You can watch this film on Hulu with English subtitles.

Pan's Labyrinth is a classic, but it freaked me out when I was younger.

pans labyrinth

If you know movies, I'm sure you've at least heard of Pan's Labyrinth (El laberinto del fauno as the Spanish title). This film by the esteemed Guillermo del Torro centers around a girl named Ofelia, finding her way through the mythical labyrinth garden. We see the switch between the war-torn reality and the trials Ofelia must go through to make it through the garden. She meets several magical creatures who become central to her story. I haven't seen this film in a very long time, but it features some dark themes that you may want to be cautious of if you decide to watch it, but an amazing tale, nonetheless.

You can watch it with English subtitles on Netflix.

La Dolce Vita takes an interesting look at celebrity life, described as "the sweet life."

la dolce vita

I don't remember what basis I had to watch this Italian film, but I can confidently say that it is one of the best films I have ever watched. La Dolce Vita is Italian for "the sweet life" and follows a gossip journalist in Rome as he pursues aristocrats. The film features highs and lows; contrasts between scenes. It is a beautiful movie and has become one of my favorites.

It is available on DVD/Blueray or Amazon Prime with English subtitles.

Sacred Games is the first Indian show I have watched and I don't know why I didn't try to watch it sooner.

sacred games

Set in Mumbai, Sacred Games is a mystery-based show and it is akin to shows in the U.S. such as Criminal Minds and other crime shows. I haven't been able to sit down and watch the second season of the show yet, but with I can promise you it is very different from the Bollywood media that we are so used to seeing. Give it a chance. I promise you will not be disappointed.

You can watch this show with English subtitles on Netflix.

Midsommar has all the cult stuff you'll ever need.


This one is cheating a little bit because it is technically an American movie, but it is almost entirely set in Sweden. I watched Midsommar with a friend of mine late last year and I can honestly say it was almost nothing like I expected it to be. The movie centers around a young group of American graduate students going on a trip to Sweden for their friend's village's Midsommar festival. Dani, the female protagonist tries to use this trip as an escape from the cruel reality of her sister's suicide and killing of their parents (I won't spoil it, but it is very clear this doesn't work out for her). The commune breathes, eats, and feels what everyone else does and is very connected in every way. It will blow you out of the water, especially when you begin to find the deeper meanings in the film. This movie is rated R for literally every reason you could think of (drugs, murder, sexual content, etc.), so proceed with caution.

You can watch it on Amazon Prime.

Money Heist is all it's hyped up to be.

money heist

This Spanish show is all about rebelling against the government and capitalism. Money Heist (with the Spanish title La casa de papel) features a man called the Professor who recruits eight robbers to steal the Royal Mint of Spain. The story is told in real-time and heavily relies on character motivation. It is honestly such an interesting show. I first heard of it on TikTok before giving it a try. It can be hard to get into, but once you watch past the first episode, it'll captivate you.

You can watch it on Netflix with English subtitles.

It's Okay to Not Be Okay is what I am currently watching and it just keeps getting better.

its okay to not be okay

This K-Drama (with the romanized title being Saikojiman Gwaenchanha) tells a very odd story about a children's book author with an antisocial personality disorder and a selfless caregiver from a psychiatric ward who works hard to provide for himself and his autistic older brother. There are a lot of references to fairytales and fantasy, but not in the "happily ever after" way that we're so used to. This show relies heavily on that deeper meaning and with every episode more is revealed. I personally adore the protagonists in this drama. They are very complex and don't share many traits with who we may consider being cliché characters. As of now in July 2020, the show is still in the first season.

You can watch it on Netflix with English subtitles.

I Lost My Body is very poetic and contains beautiful imagery.

i lost my body

This French animated film (the original title being J'ai perdu mon corps) revolves around a man whose hand has been severed from his body. The hand, in a lab after it's terrible fate, is personified and escapes to find it's owner in Paris. It fights off rats and pigeons and finds its way through other obstacles. The story is dramatic and romantic and I could watch it again and again.

You can watch it with English subtitles on Netflix.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

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