Essential Foreign Films to Watch

by johken | created - 9 months ago | updated - 9 months ago | Public
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1. Playtime (1967)

Not Rated | 115 min | Comedy

Monsieur Hulot curiously wanders around a high-tech Paris, paralleling a trip with a group of American tourists. Meanwhile, a nightclub/restaurant prepares its opening night, but it's still under construction.

Director: Jacques Tati | Stars: Jacques Tati, Barbara Dennek, Rita Maiden, France Rumilly

Votes: 17,461

2. Blue Is the Warmest Color (2013)

NC-17 | 180 min | Drama, Romance

88 Metascore

Adèle's life is changed when she meets Emma, a young woman with blue hair, who will allow her to discover desire and to assert herself as a woman and as an adult. In front of others, Adèle grows, seeks herself, loses herself, and ultimately finds herself through love and loss.

Director: Abdellatif Kechiche | Stars: Léa Seydoux, Adèle Exarchopoulos, Salim Kechiouche, Aurélien Recoing

Votes: 129,395 | Gross: $2.20M

3. Army of Shadows (1969)

Not Rated | 145 min | Drama, War

99 Metascore

An account of underground resistance fighters in Nazi-occupied France.

Director: Jean-Pierre Melville | Stars: Lino Ventura, Paul Meurisse, Jean-Pierre Cassel, Simone Signoret

Votes: 18,734 | Gross: $0.74M

4. Day for Night (1973)

PG | 116 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

A committed film director struggles to complete his movie while coping with a myriad of crises, personal and professional, among the cast and crew.

Director: François Truffaut | Stars: Jacqueline Bisset, Jean-Pierre Léaud, François Truffaut, Valentina Cortese

Votes: 18,562 | Gross: $0.02M

5. Stolen Kisses (1968)

R | 91 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

After being discharged from the army, Antoine Doinel centers a screwball comedy where he applies for different jobs and tries to make sense of his relationships with women.

Director: François Truffaut | Stars: Jean-Pierre Léaud, Claude Jade, Delphine Seyrig, Michael Lonsdale

Votes: 10,995

6. IMDb at the Emmys (2016– )

Not Rated | News

IMDb has got television's biggest night covered. From videos that get you ready for the big night to interviews with the winners plus an exclusive live aftershow, IMDb is there to bring you all the action of the Emmys.

Stars: Dan Babic, Dave Karger, Jill Kargman, Scott Roesch

Votes: 90

7. Emmanuelle (1974)

Unrated | 95 min | Drama

The wife of a French diplomat in Bangkok, Emmanuelle embarks on a voyage of sexual discovery.

Director: Just Jaeckin | Stars: Sylvia Kristel, Alain Cuny, Marika Green, Daniel Sarky

Votes: 8,827 | Gross: $8.72M

8. The Young Girls of Rochefort (1967)

G | 125 min | Comedy, Drama, Musical

Two sisters leave their small seaside town of Rochefort in search of romance. Hired as carnival singers, one falls for an American musician, while the other must search for her ideal partner.

Director: Jacques Demy | Stars: Catherine Deneuve, George Chakiris, Françoise Dorléac, Jacques Perrin

Votes: 7,405 | Gross: $0.09M

9. The Umbrellas of Cherbourg (1964)

Not Rated | 91 min | Drama, Musical, Romance

86 Metascore

A young woman separated from her lover by war faces a life-altering decision.

Director: Jacques Demy | Stars: Catherine Deneuve, Nino Castelnuovo, Anne Vernon, Marc Michel

Votes: 21,506 | Gross: $0.03M

10. Belle de Jour (1967)

R | 100 min | Drama

A frigid young housewife decides to spend her midweek afternoons as a prostitute.

Director: Luis Buñuel | Stars: Catherine Deneuve, Jean Sorel, Michel Piccoli, Geneviève Page

Votes: 37,212 | Gross: $0.03M

11. Cleo from 5 to 7 (1962)

Not Rated | 90 min | Comedy, Drama, Music

Cleo, a singer and hypochondriac, becomes increasingly worried that she might have cancer while awaiting test results from her doctor.

Director: Agnès Varda | Stars: Corinne Marchand, Antoine Bourseiller, Dominique Davray, Dorothée Blanck

Votes: 13,705

12. Jules and Jim (1962)

Not Rated | 105 min | Drama, Romance

Decades of a love triangle concerning two friends and an impulsive woman.

Director: François Truffaut | Stars: Jeanne Moreau, Oskar Werner, Henri Serre, Vanna Urbino

Votes: 34,768

13. Les Enfants Terribles (1950)

Not Rated | 105 min | Drama

The dangerously obsessive relationship between a psychologically manipulative brother and sister who isolate themselves and draw others into their mind games.

Director: Jean-Pierre Melville | Stars: Nicole Stéphane, Edouard Dermithe, Renée Cosima, Jacques Bernard

Votes: 3,417

14. Mon Oncle (1958)

Not Rated | 116 min | Comedy

Monsieur Hulot visits the technology-driven world of his sister, brother-in-law, and nephew, but he can't quite fit into the surroundings.

Director: Jacques Tati | Stars: Jacques Tati, Jean-Pierre Zola, Adrienne Servantie, Lucien Frégis

Votes: 17,350

15. Amour (2012)

PG-13 | 127 min | Drama, Romance

94 Metascore

Georges and Anne are an octogenarian couple. They are cultivated, retired music teachers. Their daughter, also a musician, lives in Britain with her family. One day, Anne has a stroke, and the couple's bond of love is severely tested.

Director: Michael Haneke | Stars: Jean-Louis Trintignant, Emmanuelle Riva, Isabelle Huppert, Alexandre Tharaud

Votes: 87,618 | Gross: $6.74M

16. Au Hasard Balthazar (1966)

Not Rated | 95 min | Drama

100 Metascore

The story of a mistreated donkey and the people around him. A study on saintliness and a sister piece to Bresson's Mouchette.

Director: Robert Bresson | Stars: Anne Wiazemsky, Walter Green, François Lafarge, Jean-Claude Guilbert

Votes: 16,067 | Gross: $0.04M

17. Buffet Froid (1979)

Not Rated | 89 min | Comedy, Crime

Black comedy about solitude and the dehumanization of the modern world, through the adventures of three men. First introduced is Alphonse Tram, an unemployed young man. His only neighbour ... See full summary »

Director: Bertrand Blier | Stars: Gérard Depardieu, Bernard Blier, Jean Carmet, Denise Gence

Votes: 4,477

18. Pierrot le Fou (1965)

Not Rated | 110 min | Crime, Drama, Romance

Pierrot escapes his boring society and travels from Paris to the Mediterranean Sea with Marianne, a girl chased by hit-men from Algeria. They lead an unorthodox life, always on the run.

Director: Jean-Luc Godard | Stars: Jean-Paul Belmondo, Anna Karina, Graziella Galvani, Aicha Abadir

Votes: 26,392

19. Le Samouraï (1967)

GP | 101 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

After professional hitman Jef Costello is seen by witnesses his efforts to provide himself an alibi drive him further into a corner.

Director: Jean-Pierre Melville | Stars: Alain Delon, François Périer, Nathalie Delon, Cathy Rosier

Votes: 41,161 | Gross: $0.04M

20. Bed & Board (1970)

GP | 100 min | Comedy, Drama

Antoine Doinel works dying flowers in the courtyard outside his apartment. He is married to Christine, who is pregnant. He has an affair with a Japanese woman, jeopardising his marriage.

Director: François Truffaut | Stars: Jean-Pierre Léaud, Claude Jade, Hiroko Berghauer, Barbara Laage

Votes: 7,408

21. Masculin Féminin (1966)

Not Rated | 103 min | Drama, Romance

92 Metascore

A romance between young Parisians, shown through a series of vignettes.

Director: Jean-Luc Godard | Stars: Jean-Pierre Léaud, Chantal Goya, Marlène Jobert, Michel Debord

Votes: 11,548 | Gross: $0.20M

22. Love on the Run (1979)

PG | 94 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

Antoine Doinel is now more than thirty. He divorces from Christine. He is a proofreader, and is in love with Sabine, a record seller. Colette, his teenager love, is now a lawyer. She buys ... See full summary »

Director: François Truffaut | Stars: Jean-Pierre Léaud, Claude Jade, Marie-France Pisier, Dani

Votes: 5,432

23. Grand Illusion (1937)

Not Rated | 113 min | Drama, War

During WWI, two French soldiers are captured and imprisoned in a German P.O.W. camp. Several escape attempts follow until they are eventually sent to a seemingly inescapable fortress.

Director: Jean Renoir | Stars: Jean Gabin, Dita Parlo, Pierre Fresnay, Erich von Stroheim

Votes: 31,914 | Gross: $0.17M

25. L'auberge espagnole (2002)

R | 122 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

65 Metascore

A strait-laced French student moves into an apartment in Barcelona with a cast of six other characters from all over Europe. Together, they speak the international language of love and friendship.

Director: Cédric Klapisch | Stars: Romain Duris, Judith Godrèche, Kelly Reilly, Audrey Tautou

Votes: 38,241 | Gross: $3.90M

26. La Haine (1995)

Not Rated | 98 min | Crime, Drama

24 hours in the lives of three young men in the French suburbs the day after a violent riot.

Director: Mathieu Kassovitz | Stars: Vincent Cassel, Hubert Koundé, Saïd Taghmaoui, Abdel Ahmed Ghili

Votes: 136,816 | Gross: $0.31M

27. Breathless (1960)

Not Rated | 90 min | Crime, Drama

A small-time thief steals a car and impulsively murders a motorcycle policeman. Wanted by the authorities, he reunites with a hip American journalism student and attempts to persuade her to run away with him to Italy.

Director: Jean-Luc Godard | Stars: Jean-Paul Belmondo, Jean Seberg, Daniel Boulanger, Henri-Jacques Huet

Votes: 67,369 | Gross: $0.34M

28. Monsieur Gangster (1963)

105 min | Comedy, Action, Crime

Ex-gangster Fernand (Lino Ventura) receives a call from a dying friend, a mob boss nicknamed "The Mexican". The doomed mobster talks Fernand into taking care of some criminal business and ... See full summary »

Director: Georges Lautner | Stars: Lino Ventura, Bernard Blier, Francis Blanche, Claude Rich

Votes: 4,996

29. La règle du jeu (2014)

83 min | Comedy, Drama

To have a better knowledge of each other, ten futures colleagues play to a question and answer game. Little by little, the game become out of control.

Director: Ambroise Carminati | Stars: Cédric Auffret, Noémie Chicheportiche, Mathilde Fouet, Benjamin Haddad

30. Diabolique (1955)

Not Rated | 117 min | Crime, Drama, Horror

The wife and mistress of a loathed school principal hatch a plan to murder him while having the perfect alibi. They carry out the plan...but then his body disappears.

Director: Henri-Georges Clouzot | Stars: Simone Signoret, Véra Clouzot, Paul Meurisse, Charles Vanel

Votes: 58,511

31. Mouchette (1967)

Not Rated | 81 min | Drama

A young girl living in the French countryside suffers constant indignities at the hand of alcoholism and her fellow man.

Director: Robert Bresson | Stars: Nadine Nortier, Jean-Claude Guilbert, Marie Cardinal, Paul Hébert

Votes: 9,265

32. My Night at Maud's (1969)

GP | 105 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

The rigid principles of a devout Catholic man are challenged during a one-night stay with Maud, a divorced woman with an outsize personality.

Director: Éric Rohmer | Stars: Jean-Louis Trintignant, Françoise Fabian, Marie-Christine Barrault, Antoine Vitez

Votes: 9,447

33. The Beat That My Heart Skipped (2005)

Not Rated | 108 min | Crime, Drama, Music

75 Metascore

Will Thomas still lead a life of crime and cruelty, just like his thuggish father, or will he pursue his dream of becoming a pianist?

Director: Jacques Audiard | Stars: Romain Duris, Aure Atika, Emmanuelle Devos, Niels Arestrup

Votes: 18,090 | Gross: $1.02M

34. Le Cercle Rouge (1970)

Not Rated | 140 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

91 Metascore

After leaving prison, master thief Corey crosses paths with a notorious escapee and an alcoholic former policeman. The trio proceed to plot an elaborate heist.

Director: Jean-Pierre Melville | Stars: Alain Delon, Bourvil, Gian Maria Volontè, Yves Montand

Votes: 19,994 | Gross: $0.37M

35. My Sex Life... or How I Got Into an Argument (1996)

178 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

76 Metascore

Paul Dedalus is at a crossroads in his life. He has to make several decisions; should he complete his doctorate, does he want to become a full professor, does he really love his ... See full summary »

Director: Arnaud Desplechin | Stars: Mathieu Amalric, Emmanuelle Devos, Emmanuel Salinger, Marianne Denicourt

Votes: 1,276

36. A Prophet (2009)

R | 155 min | Crime, Drama

90 Metascore

A young Arab man is sent to a French prison.

Director: Jacques Audiard | Stars: Tahar Rahim, Niels Arestrup, Adel Bencherif, Reda Kateb

Votes: 89,726 | Gross: $2.08M

37. Coup de Torchon (1981)

Not Rated | 128 min | Comedy, Crime, Drama

A pathetic police chief, humiliated by everyone around him, suddenly wants a clean slate in life - and resorts to drastic means to do so.

Director: Bertrand Tavernier | Stars: Philippe Noiret, Isabelle Huppert, Stéphane Audran, Jean-Pierre Marielle

Votes: 4,605

38. Mr. Klein (1976)

PG | 123 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

In Nazi-occupied Paris, the immoral art dealer, Robert Klein, leads a life of luxury, until a copy of a Jewish newspaper brings him to the attention of the police, linking him with a mysterious doppelgänger. Will Mr Klein clear his name?

Director: Joseph Losey | Stars: Alain Delon, Jeanne Moreau, Francine Bergé, Juliet Berto

Votes: 4,933 | Gross: $0.03M

39. Mistress (1976)

Not Rated | 112 min | Drama, Romance

A common thief (Depardieu) breaks into the house of a professional dominatrix (Ogier), and begins to help her "train" her clients. Though this world is alien to his experience, he finds ... See full summary »

Director: Barbet Schroeder | Stars: Gérard Depardieu, Bulle Ogier, André Rouyer, Nathalie Keryan

Votes: 1,607

40. The Last Metro (1980)

PG | 131 min | Drama, Romance, War

In occupied Paris, an actress married to a Jewish theater owner must keep him hidden from the Nazis while doing both of their jobs.

Director: François Truffaut | Stars: Catherine Deneuve, Gérard Depardieu, Jean Poiret, Andréa Ferréol

Votes: 11,492

41. Cyrano de Bergerac (1990)

PG | 137 min | Comedy, Drama, History

79 Metascore

Embarrassed by his large nose, a romantic poet/soldier romances his cousin by proxy.

Director: Jean-Paul Rappeneau | Stars: Gérard Depardieu, Anne Brochet, Vincent Perez, Jacques Weber

Votes: 21,295 | Gross: $15.14M



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