The Best Movie of Each Year Not in the English Language

by verbrugge | created - 15 Sep 2011 | updated - 07 Jan 2013 | Public
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1. Jagten (2012)

R | 115 min | Drama

8.3
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  
76 Metascore

A teacher lives a lonely life, all the while struggling over his son's custody. His life slowly gets better as he finds love and receives good news from his son, but his new luck is about to be brutally shattered by an innocent little lie.

Director: Thomas Vinterberg | Stars: Mads Mikkelsen, Thomas Bo Larsen, Annika Wedderkopp, Lasse Fogelstrøm

Votes: 205,676 | Gross: $0.69M

2. A Separation (2011)

PG-13 | 123 min | Drama, Mystery

8.4
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  
95 Metascore

A married couple are faced with a difficult decision - to improve the life of their child by moving to another country or to stay in Iran and look after a deteriorating parent who has Alzheimer's disease.

Director: Asghar Farhadi | Stars: Payman Maadi, Leila Hatami, Sareh Bayat, Shahab Hosseini

Votes: 172,865 | Gross: $7.10M

3. In a Better World (2010)

R | 119 min | Drama, Romance

7.7
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
65 Metascore

The lives of two Danish families cross each other, and an extraordinary but risky friendship comes into bud. But loneliness, frailty and sorrow lie in wait.

Director: Susanne Bier | Stars: Mikael Persbrandt, Trine Dyrholm, Markus Rygaard, Wil Johnson

Votes: 34,807 | Gross: $1.01M

4. The Secret in Their Eyes (2009)

R | 129 min | Drama, Mystery, Romance

8.2
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  
80 Metascore

A retired legal counselor writes a novel hoping to find closure for one of his past unresolved homicide cases and for his unreciprocated love with his superior - both of which still haunt him decades later.

Director: Juan José Campanella | Stars: Ricardo Darín, Soledad Villamil, Pablo Rago, Carla Quevedo

Votes: 152,144 | Gross: $20.17M

5. Let the Right One In (2008)

R | 115 min | Drama, Horror, Romance

7.9
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
82 Metascore

Oskar, an overlooked and bullied boy, finds love and revenge through Eli, a beautiful but peculiar girl.

Director: Tomas Alfredson | Stars: Kåre Hedebrant, Lina Leandersson, Per Ragnar, Henrik Dahl

Votes: 185,190 | Gross: $2.12M

6. The Diving Bell and the Butterfly (2007)

PG-13 | 112 min | Biography, Drama

8.0
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  
92 Metascore

The true story of Elle editor Jean-Dominique Bauby who suffers a stroke and has to live with an almost totally paralyzed body; only his left eye isn't paralyzed.

Director: Julian Schnabel | Stars: Mathieu Amalric, Emmanuelle Seigner, Marie-Josée Croze, Anne Consigny

Votes: 94,610 | Gross: $5.99M

7. Pan's Labyrinth (2006)

R | 118 min | Drama, Fantasy, War

8.2
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  
98 Metascore

In the falangist Spain of 1944, the bookish young stepdaughter of a sadistic army officer escapes into an eerie but captivating fantasy world.

Director: Guillermo del Toro | Stars: Ivana Baquero, Ariadna Gil, Sergi López, Maribel Verdú

Votes: 518,499 | Gross: $37.63M

8. Caché (2005)

R | 117 min | Drama, Mystery, Thriller

7.3
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
83 Metascore

A married couple is terrorized by a series of surveillance videotapes left on their front porch.

Director: Michael Haneke | Stars: Daniel Auteuil, Juliette Binoche, Maurice Bénichou, Annie Girardot

Votes: 59,647 | Gross: $3.63M

9. Downfall (2004)

R | 156 min | Biography, Drama, History

8.2
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  
82 Metascore

Traudl Junge, the final secretary for Adolf Hitler, tells of the Nazi dictator's final days in his Berlin bunker at the end of WWII.

Director: Oliver Hirschbiegel | Stars: Bruno Ganz, Alexandra Maria Lara, Ulrich Matthes, Juliane Köhler

Votes: 275,771 | Gross: $5.51M

10. Good Bye Lenin! (2003)

R | 121 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

7.7
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
68 Metascore

In 1990, to protect his fragile mother from a fatal shock after a long coma, a young man must keep her from learning that her beloved nation of East Germany as she knew it has disappeared.

Director: Wolfgang Becker | Stars: Daniel Brühl, Katrin Saß, Chulpan Khamatova, Florian Lukas

Votes: 122,297 | Gross: $4.06M

11. City of God (2002)

R | 130 min | Crime, Drama

8.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.6/10 X  
79 Metascore

Two boys growing up in a violent neighborhood of Rio de Janeiro take different paths: one becomes a photographer, the other a drug dealer.

Directors: Fernando Meirelles, Kátia Lund | Stars: Alexandre Rodrigues, Leandro Firmino, Matheus Nachtergaele, Phellipe Haagensen

Votes: 587,054 | Gross: $7.56M

12. Amélie (2001)

R | 122 min | Comedy, Romance

8.3
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  
69 Metascore

Amélie is an innocent and naive girl in Paris with her own sense of justice. She decides to help those around her and, along the way, discovers love.

Director: Jean-Pierre Jeunet | Stars: Audrey Tautou, Mathieu Kassovitz, Rufus, Lorella Cravotta

Votes: 594,234 | Gross: $33.23M

13. Amores Perros (2000)

R | 154 min | Drama, Thriller

8.1
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
83 Metascore

A horrific car accident connects three stories, each involving characters dealing with loss, regret, and life's harsh realities, all in the name of love.

Director: Alejandro G. Iñárritu | Stars: Emilio Echevarría, Gael García Bernal, Goya Toledo, Álvaro Guerrero

Votes: 189,884 | Gross: $5.38M

14. Buena Vista Social Club (1999)

G | 105 min | Documentary, Music

7.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
81 Metascore

Aging Cuban musicians whose talents had been virtually forgotten following Castro's takeover of Cuba, are brought out of retirement by Ry Cooder, who travelled to Havana in order to bring the musicians together, resulting in triumphant performances of extraordinary music, and resurrecting the musicians' careers.

Director: Wim Wenders | Stars: Compay Segundo, Ibrahim Ferrer, Rubén González, Eliades Ochoa

Votes: 14,389 | Gross: $7.00M

15. The Celebration (1998)

R | 105 min | Drama

8.1
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
82 Metascore

At Helge's 60th birthday party, some unpleasant family truths are revealed.

Director: Thomas Vinterberg | Stars: Ulrich Thomsen, Henning Moritzen, Thomas Bo Larsen, Paprika Steen

Votes: 69,889 | Gross: $1.65M

16. Life Is Beautiful (1997)

PG-13 | 116 min | Comedy, Drama, War

8.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.6/10 X  
59 Metascore

When an open-minded Jewish librarian and his son become victims of the Holocaust, he uses a perfect mixture of will, humor and imagination to protect his son from the dangers around their camp.

Director: Roberto Benigni | Stars: Roberto Benigni, Nicoletta Braschi, Giorgio Cantarini, Giustino Durano

Votes: 484,055 | Gross: $57.60M

17. Kolya (1996)

PG-13 | 105 min | Comedy, Drama, Music

7.8
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

Franta Louka is a concert cellist in Soviet-occupied Czechoslovakia, a confirmed bachelor and a lady's man. Having lost his place in the state orchestra, he must make ends meet by playing ... See full summary »

Director: Jan Sverák | Stars: Zdenek Sverák, Andrey Khalimon, Libuse Safránková, Ondrej Vetchý

Votes: 12,922 | Gross: $5.73M

18. La Haine (1995)

Not Rated | 98 min | Crime, Drama

8.1
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

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: 117,164 | Gross: $0.31M

19. Il Postino (1994)

PG | 108 min | Biography, Comedy, Drama

7.7
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
81 Metascore

Simple Italian postman learns to love poetry while delivering mail to a famous poet; he uses this to woo local beauty Beatrice.

Directors: Michael Radford, Massimo Troisi | Stars: Massimo Troisi, Philippe Noiret, Maria Grazia Cucinotta, Renato Scarpa

Votes: 28,272 | Gross: $21.85M

20. Three Colors: Blue (1993)

R | 98 min | Drama, Music, Mystery

8.0
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  
85 Metascore

A woman struggles to find a way to live her life after the death of her husband and child.

Director: Krzysztof Kieslowski | Stars: Juliette Binoche, Zbigniew Zamachowski, Julie Delpy, Benoît Régent

Votes: 69,570 | Gross: $1.32M

21. Hard Boiled (1992)

R | 128 min | Action, Crime, Thriller

7.9
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

A tough-as-nails cop teams up with an undercover agent to shut down a sinister mobster and his crew.

Director: John Woo | Stars: Yun-Fat Chow, Tony Chiu-Wai Leung, Teresa Mo, Philip Chan

Votes: 41,019

22. Delicatessen (1991)

R | 99 min | Comedy, Crime

7.7
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
66 Metascore

Post-apocalyptic surrealist black comedy about the landlord of an apartment building who occasionally prepares a delicacy for his odd tenants.

Directors: Marc Caro, Jean-Pierre Jeunet | Stars: Marie-Laure Dougnac, Dominique Pinon, Pascal Benezech, Jean-Claude Dreyfus

Votes: 70,896 | Gross: $1.79M

23. La Femme Nikita (1990)

R | 117 min | Action, Thriller

7.4
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
56 Metascore

Convicted felon Nikita, instead of going to jail, is given a new identity and trained, stylishly, as a top secret spy/assassin.

Director: Luc Besson | Stars: Anne Parillaud, Marc Duret, Patrick Fontana, Alain Lathière

Votes: 59,099 | Gross: $5.02M

24. The Killer (1989)

R | 111 min | Action, Crime, Drama

7.9
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A disillusioned assassin accepts one last hit in hopes of using his earnings to restore vision to a singer he accidentally blinded, only to be double-crossed by his boss.

Director: John Woo | Stars: Yun-Fat Chow, Danny Lee, Sally Yeh, Kong Chu

Votes: 41,006

25. Cinema Paradiso (1988)

R | 155 min | Drama

8.5
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  
80 Metascore

A filmmaker recalls his childhood when falling in love with the pictures at the cinema of his home village and forms a deep friendship with the cinema's projectionist.

Director: Giuseppe Tornatore | Stars: Philippe Noiret, Enzo Cannavale, Antonella Attili, Isa Danieli

Votes: 174,479 | Gross: $11.99M