My Fave Five: International Films

Story posted October 18, 2022 in CommRadio, Arts & Entertainment by Erell Williams

“Boy and the World”

This animated film was developed in Brazil and written and directed by Alê Abreu. The movie’s storytelling approach takes a unique style using only sound, music and visual elements.

One of the essential aspects of watching this international piece was being able to experience strong emotions while being forced as a viewer to interpret and understand characters on a deeper level than usual.

The lack of words made the language barrier unimportant in the grand scheme and added a personal essence.

Unlike a lot of animated movies, even from the best like Studio Ghibli, it takes a genuine desire to empathize in order to gain anything from the watch which I appreciate.

“My Annoying Brother”

This Korean film is actually one of my favorite movies of all time partially because of the lead actors and partly due to the plot.

My original appreciation came out of respect for seeing a k-idol, Do Kyung Soo, take a step into a serious acting role. However, it also grew my respect for actors because it was my first time seeing a blind person being depicted in a light of potential and capability.

Outside of the lead actors being amazing, the plot of this film is what really draws me in to watch it repeatedly. The story approaches a realistic situation, an up-and-coming athlete dealing with a sudden physical impairment and having to adapt, while adding comedy and relatable moments.

“The Handmaiden”

“The Handmaiden” is a well known Korean movie that has become my personal “Pulp Fiction.”

The film does an excellent job at making an audience feel excited, confused and, by the end of the movie, intelligent.

Not only does “The Handmaiden” have a spectacular writing team, but the beautiful meshing of two languages is an incredibly exciting experience that doesn’t happen often, especially in American film.

It’s not uncommon for movies to be in environments where multiple languages or a foreign language should be used, but instead we often see an easier approach of only writing in one language, or occasionally throwing in one line of dialogue with the foreign language. The decision to use both Korean and Japanese is refreshing and actually adds to tension and relationship dynamics.

My newfound love for this film is unexplainable.

“The Worst Person in the World”

I’ve seen a lot of Norwegian films and shows, but “The Worst Person in the World” definitely catches my attention.

Analyzing human faults, predominantly your own, is such a necessary thing to do, especially when it comes to gaining the ability to give leniency to others. Starting from the title, the exaggeration that anyone could actually be the “the worst” anything is completely broken down.

Throughout the movie, it felt like watching the average person making average mistakes and trying their best to live an average yet happy life.

Of all the international films I’ve watched, the foundation of this movie is just based on being an ever changing human and that makes it such a comfort to watch.

“Cold War”

This movie originates in Poland, but dives into different parts of Europe and slightly reveals a non-American perspective of the Cold War. The film has a heated romance line that draws watchers in and, luckily, also uses a variety of languages such as Polish, French, Russian, etc.

Once again, seeing different languages being used appropriately is such an understated addition to any film. Not only does it add authenticity to the characters but it also makes the stage so much more believable.

The romance in the film, although not to everyone’s taste, is one of my favorite types which is star-crossed lovers. I love a good tragedy because it breaks off from traditional romance plots and still feels just as possible as any other typical romance.

Overall, the unfamiliar perspective change and juicy love story really makes “Cold War” stand out.

Erell Williams is a second-year majoring in broadcasting journalism. To contact her, email

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Erell Williams

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Erell Williams is a first-year student, and her intended majors are Broadcasting Journalism and Chinese. She grew up in Douglassville, Pennsylvania. She is a member of the CommRadio News and Arts department. To contact her, email .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).