Five Foreign Films that You Need to Watch on Netflix.

For every 10 films that I watch, I like to watch a foreign film. This is because it forces me to pay attention in more detail to the storylines, character arch’s, dialogue, and everything else that goes into a movie. Foreign films expose different types of cultures around the world and different styles of filmmaking. I prefer to watch films set in various countries where they speak the native language because it is more authentic. By the end of watching foreign films, I end up discovering more new things about culture, movies, language, politics and etc.

1.  Old Boy

The logline that Netflix states about the film is:

“With no clue how he came to be imprisoned, drugged, and tortured for 15 years. A desperate businessman seeks revenge on his captors.”

If you are sick of Hollywood thrillers, this film will give you quite a refreshing outlook on cinema. This Korean film is inspired by Oedipus The King and will take you on a ride that you have never been on before. This film is so well written that it holds on to all of its cards and plays them one by one at the precise moments.


​2. Infernal Affairs

The logline that Netflix states about the film is:

“A veteran cop goes undercover to expose a detective who leaks information to the criminal underworld, but the mole doesn’t know who’s tracking him.”

It drives me absolutely insane that most people do not know that this film was the original film and the inspiration and basis for The Departed. Yes, The Departed is a remake of this film.  There are a few differences between the eastern and western adaptations, but the main one that I would like to point out is that this Chinese film focuses more on the relationships between the two moles. It is an absolute classic.


​3. Ida

The logline that Netflix states about the film is:

“Her innocent life masked lies from the past. She’ll soon be a nun unless terrible things change her faith.”

This film hits on the strongest subjects of the Holocaust and Stalinism. It accurately portrays a time and culture that most people do not know or understand. This Polish film is sort of like a road trip film that focuses on the relationship between two characters as they travel into Poland’s hinterlands. This film is culturally relevant, and when you watch it, you will know why there was so much acclaim to this film.


​4. City of God

The logline that Netflix states about the film is:

“A Brazilian slum kid rises to drug kingpin, leaving a trail of dead rivals in his wake. He only missed one.”

If you like “hood” films and crime-thriller- dramas then this should be at the top of your list. Breathtaking. You will be morphed into the slums of Rio de Janeiro to experience a unique criminal underworld. It will bring chills down your spine. This film should be at the top of everyone’s Netflix watch list.


​5. Ip Man

The logline that Netflix states about the film is:

“An occupying Japanese general challenges Chinese men to duels to prove the superiority of the Japanese, but Ip Man refuses to fight – at first.”

Based on the life of Ip Man, the master who taught Bruce Lee, Donnie Yen portrays this legendary Chinese figure to its greatest folklore. Donnie Yen’s display of traditional Wing Chun is truly authentic. This film teaches us history about the Sino-Japanese war and the history of Wing Chun. If you want to see Donnie Yen play the ultimate kung fu master while seeing some of the best fight scenes, then give this film a look. It is my favorite on the list.

Foreign films are the cheapest way to travel without ever buying a plane ticket and leaving your house.

Let me know what you thought of these films so comment below and let me know!


“The Zos Knows”

-David Zosel 

If you want to support my writing and for me to be able to create more content you can make a donation here: Venmo

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