Tuesday, August 2, 2011

An Odd Question

Do you ever watch foreign movies with English subtitles?

I do. I find that they satisfy a craving for a completely different viewpoint on life and society than my normal viewing habits. I am especially fond of Swedish and French films for their rather odd (to an American) point of view.

Understand that I don't speak or understand a word of Swedish, so the subtitles have to carry the movie for me. Likewise my French is pretty poor, so unless the on-screen action involves speaking to the class idiot, I have to depend on the subtitles. It is always amazing to me how much of the emotional tone one can deduce just from hearing the voice inflections of the actors, even when you don't understand a word they are saying! I suspect that the similar inflection structure of French and Swedish to English is the reason I like those films and cannot stand, for example, German subtitled films.

It is also interesting to me that my preference for type of film varies by nationality. I like Swedish detective mysteries and social movies while I like French humor and farce. I tend to like the humor in French movies featuring Audrey Tautou, whereas I really don't have a favorite actor or actress in Swedish films.

So with all my oddities in mind, here are a few foreign films that I highly recommend, subtitles and all:

Un Long Dimanche de Fiancailles (A Very Long Engagement)

Le Fabuleux Destin d'Amélie Poulain (Amelie)

Så som i himmelen (As It Is In Heaven)

So do you watch foreign films? If you do, what are some of your favorites?
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