Circuit 3: Foreign Language Films


For those of us outside of the larger markets, finding the films nominated for Oscar’s Best Foreign Language Feature can sometimes be a daunting, if not futile, task. We’ll normally get to see the bigger hits like Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, or Amour, for example, prior to the big ceremony, but we are usually left to search out the smaller fare on video long after the Academy Awards have been handed out.

For this inexcusable reason, I often miss out on seeing the majority of films from outside the United States. Of all of the genres (or classifications) of film, this is by far the area where my knowledge lacks the most. So for this reason, I’m asking you, our readers, to educate me on the best that the rest of the world has to offer. I’ve seen most of the classics – from Fellini’s 8 1/2 (1963) to Kurosawa’s Seven Samurai (1954) – but there is a world of film out there I have yet to see.

So what three foreign language films have you enjoyed that you would recommend?

My Circuit 3 for Foreign Language Films:

  1. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon – Taiwan (2000)
  2. Cinema Paradiso – Italy (1989)
  3. Life is Beautiful – Italy (1998)

What are your three favorite/best films not in the English language?