You Need To Start Binge-Watching This Category On Netflix

Netflix international films

Picture this: It’s Friday night and you’re ready for some well-deserved “me time.” This calls for pedicures, face masks, junk food and of course, Netflix. You anxiously scroll through the homepage trying to find a flick that you haven’t watched already once, twice, or hey even multiple times (I’m looking at you, Clueless). You don’t want to start a whole new TV series, so what’s a committed Netflix viewer supposed to do?

The answer is right in front of you, but your eyes keep glazing over it..

International films!

Think about it, you’ve been devoting hours to Hollywood and there are loads of other movie industries just waiting for you to devour their stories. With the world becoming more connected than ever before, the opportunity to experience other cultures through the movie screen has never been easier. Below are six recommendations for you to add to your Netflix List that ranges from light-hearted comedy to dark thriller. Just don’t forget to turn on the subtitles.

If you want action: Battle Royale (Japanese)

Think of this as a bloodier version of The Hunger Games because it’s also based on a novel about how a group of kids are forced to fight to the death. The backstory is that the school kids have been rebelling and abandoning their schooling, so this competition is their annual punishment. After being thrown on an island, hesitant alliances are immediately made amongst the Japanese middle schoolers and it doesn’t take long for the violence to kick in. It’s definietly eerie to see the bloody acts being committed by such young kids dressed in prim school uniforms.

If you want adventure: Queen (Indian-Bollywood)

Rani was supposed to get married, but her fiancé suddenly dumps her. She’s then encouraged to stop moping around and take her European honeymoon trip to Paris and Amsterdam. This modest girl from New Delhi then has the trip of a lifetime. I don’t want to spoil anything so I’ll all say is it involves a vivacious new friend and a few unexpected roommates. This is a movie to laugh along with some girlfriends and to embrace kicking those jerks to the curb.

If you want drama: After the Wedding (Danish)

No family is ever simple or perfect and Anna’s family is not an exception. At her wedding, her father invited some guy she doesn’t know because he’s a potential business partner…but her mom happens to know him already. Hm, weird. His name is Jacob and he’s hoping for Anna’s dad to invest money in the orphanage he manages in India. Unfortunately, his business trip and Anna’s newlywed life get complicated while relationships, feelings and wounds are dug up from the past.

If you want inspiration: Mary Kom (Indian-Bollywood)

This is based on the true story of the Indian female boxer, Mary Kom, and her story is truly amazing. Her father disapproves of her passion and the country that she proudly fights in the ring for, invests little money on its dedicated women athletes. She battles all of this and her fierce competitors with admirable commitment to her craft. Hell, Mary Kom doesn’t even let starting a family stops her from getting back into the ring. Bonus: the amazing Priyanka Chopra (you might have seen her on ABC’s Quantico) is the leading lady.

If you want romance: Shall We Dance? (Japanese)

Sure, maybe you’ve seen the American version of this movie with Richard Gere, but the 1996 original takes a more subtle approach to portraying romance. A Tokyo man soon notices a beautiful dancing figure in a dance studio during his daily train commute and something about her entices him to meet her. This is a story about how with the help of a patient teacher, a shy man finds his outlet on the ballroom dance floor. It’s stocked with choreographed pair dancing and a budding infatuation, what more could you want?

If you want suspense: Omar (Palestinian)

Warning, prepare for tears and outrage because this is a story of two star-crossed lovers in the setting of the tense West Bank. Omar occasionally sneaks over the wall to meet his lover and soon-to-be wife, Nadia. But their loving plans are at risk when Omar and his friends get in serious trouble with Israeli police. Like Romeo and Juliet, timing is not this couple’s strong suit and there are plenty of twists and turns along the way.

So start watching, now!

We all know how Netflix loves to stop streaming content for no good reason, so make sure to watch these international productions before it’s too late.

Image credit: Televisione Streaming

Raquel Nicole DeSouza
I'm a student, storyteller and struggling yogi. The D.C. metro area is my home. Pastimes include searching for recipes and reading 20th century American lit.