Top 10 Foreign Films To Help Improve Your Foreign Language Awareness

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One of the more interesting ways to brush up on your foreign language skills is watching foreign films. Watching good films in a language you love is a great study aid alongside language training, and some of these films might inspire you to want to learn a new language.

So, grab the popcorn, get comfortable and enjoy this selection of films from around the world.


1.  Hard Boiled – Hong Kong, Cantonese, 1992

We start off with a good old fashioned action film direct by John Woo. Chow Yun Fat tales the lead as the impressively named Inspector “”Tequila” Yuen and spends a lot of the films running time shooting things in a cinematic manner, against the standard story of a cop on the edge taking down a criminal syndicate.


2.  City of God – Brazil, Portuguese, 2002

Sticking with the crime theme, City of God offers less style and more substance. City of God is based on a true story, and depicts the growth of organised crime in Rio De Janeiro through the end of the 60’s to the start of the 80’s. This unflinching movie is not an easy watch, but it’s rewarding, with fleshed out characters and a great story.


 3.  [Rec] – Spain, Spanish, 2007

It’s a horror movie, sure. But it’s one of the best horror films of the last decade, and possibly the best zombie flick I’ve ever seen. This is a found footage movie following a reporter and her cameraman as things go from bad to worse as she covers a story with the local fire department that takes her to a nearby apartment building at the start of a zombie outbreak.


4.  Pans Labyrinth – Mexico, Spanish, 2006

Pans Labyrinth is best described as a fairytale. The film is set in Spain in 1944, 5 short years after the Spanish Civil War. It may not sound like your standard fairytale, but Pan’s Labyrinth is the darkest fairytale to reach the silver screen. Watching the young heroine interacting with a variety of fantasy characters is equal parts creepy and beautiful.


5.  The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo – Sweden, Swedish, 2009

Sweden has a well-deserved history for incredible crime thrillers, and The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo doesn’t let the reputation down. A journalist and computer hacker team up to investigate a forty year old mystery. This is the start of a trilogy, and fans would be well advised to look up “The Girl Who Played With Fire” and “The Girl Who Kicked The Hornets Nest”.


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