20 European Movies To Watch If You're Tired Of Hollywood

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Yes,we all love Hollywood movies and most of our heroes are the characters from there. But the filming industry isn't only in Hollywood. If you're tired of watching the same old cliches, these European made movies will blow your mind off. We put together 20 of them to give you a taste of what Europe feels like. 

The list isn't in a particular order. Enjoy.

The storylines were taken from IMDb.

20. Dancer in the Dark (2000) / Lars Von Trier - DENMARK

Selma has emigrated with her son from Central Europe to America. The year is 1964. Selma works day and night to save her son from the same disease she suffers from, a disease that inevitably will make her blind. But Selma has the energy to live because of her secret! She loves musicals. When life feels tough she can pretend that she is in the wonderful world of musicals...just for a short moment. All happiness life is not able to give her she finds there...

IMDb: 8.0

19. The Piano Teacher (2001) / Michael Haneke - FRANCE

Erika Kohut is a pianist, teaching music. Schubert and Schumann are her forte, but she's not quite at concert level. She's approaching middle age, living with her mother who is domineering then submissive; Erika is a victim then combative. With her students she is severe. She visits a sex shop to watch DVDs; she walks a drive-in theater to stare at couples having sex. Walter is a self-assured student with some musical talent; he auditions for her class and is forthright in his attraction to her. She responds coldly then demands he let her lead. Next she changes the game with a letter, inviting him into her fantasies. How will he respond; how does sex have power over our other faculties?

IMDb: 7.4

18. Kynodontas (2009) / Yorgos Lanthimos - GREECE

Three teenagers are confined to an isolated country estate that could very well be on another planet. The trio spend their days listening to endless homemade tapes that teach them a whole new vocabulary. Any word that comes from beyond their family abode is instantly assigned a new meaning. Hence 'the sea' refers to a large armchair and 'zombies' are little yellow flowers. Having invented a brother whom they claim to have ostracized for his disobedience, the über-controlling parents terrorize their offspring into submission. The father is the only family member who can leave the manicured lawns of their self-inflicted exile, earning their keep by managing a nearby factory, while the only outsider allowed on the premises is his colleague Christina, who is paid to relieve the son of his male urges. Tired of these dutiful acts of carnality, Christina disturbs the domestic balance.

IMDb: 7.2

17. Broken Embraces (2009) / Pedro Almodovar - SPAIN

Passion, obsession, wealth, jealousy, family, guilt, and creativity. In Madrid, Harry Caine is a blind screenwriter, assisted by Judit and her son Diego. The past comes rushing in when Harry learns of the death of Ernesto Martel, a wealthy businessman, and Ernesto's son pays Harry a visit. In a series of flashbacks to the 1990s, we see Harry, who was then Mateo Blanco, a director; he falls in love with Ernesto's mistress, Lena, and casts her in a film, which Ernesto finances. Ernesto is jealous and obsessive, sending his son to film the making of the movie, to follow Lena and Mateo, and to give him the daily footage. Judit doesn't like Lena. It's a collision course. 

IMDb: 7.2

16. Let the Right On In (2011) / Tomas Alfredson - SWEDEN

Oskar, a bullied 12-year old, dreams of revenge. He falls in love with Eli, a peculiar girl. She can't stand the sun or food and to come into a room she needs to be invited. Eli gives Oskar the strength to hit back but when he realizes that Eli needs to drink other people's blood to live he's faced with a choice. How much can love forgive? Set in the Stockholm suburb of Blackeberg in 1982. 

IMDb: 8.0

15. Das Leben der Anderen (2006) / Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck - GERMANY

Gerd Wiesler is an officer with the Stasi, the East German secret police. The film begins in 1984 when Wiesler attends a play written by Georg Dreyman, who is considered by many to be the ultimate example of the loyal citizen. Wiesler has a gut feeling that Dreyman can't be as ideal as he seems and believes surveillance is called for. The Minister of Culture agrees but only later does Wiesler learn that the Minister sees Dreyman as a rival and lusts after his partner Christa-Maria. The more time he spends listening in on them, the more he comes to care about them. The once rigid Stasi officer begins to intervene in their lives, in a positive way, protecting them whenever possible. Eventually, Wiesler activities catch up to him and while there is no proof of wrongdoing, he finds himself in menial jobs - until the unbelievable happens. 

IMDb: 8.5

14. Funny Games (1997) / Michael Haneke - GERMANY

Two seemingly well-educated young men, who call each other Paul and Peter among other names, approach a family on vacation. They are, apparently, friends of the neighbors, and, at the beginning, their true intentions are not known, but soon, the family is imprisoned and tortured in its own house violently, which the viewers are forced mostly to imagine and to share a certain complicity with the criminals. It might be some kind of game with the lives of husband, wife, son, and dog, but why are they doing it?

IMDb: 7.6

13. Sound of Noise (2012) / Ola Simonsson - SWEDEN

The narrative revolves around police officer Amadeus Warnebring, tone-deaf scion of a distinguished musical family, and his attempts to track down a group of six guerilla percussionists whose anarchic public performances are terrorizing the city. The drumming set pieces correspond to an avant-garde score with four hilariously titled movements. Where the short involved the six drummers imaginatively using standard apartment furnishings as their instruments, the feature unleashes them on an unspecified city's civic and cultural institutions. Including an amusing backstory for each of the soberly dressed drummers as well as their nemesis, music-hating investigator Warnebring, the film creates a treat for the eyes and ears from the dull, repetitive sounds of everyday life.

IMDb: 7.3

12. The Ghost Writer (2010) / Roman Polanski - FRANCE

An unremarkable ghost-writer has landed a lucrative contract to redact the memoirs of Adam Lang, the former UK Prime Minister. After dominating British politics for years, Lang has retired with his wife to the USA. He lives on an island, in luxurious, isolated premises complete with a security detail and a secretarial staff. Soon, Adam Lang gets embroiled in a major scandal with international ramifications that reveals how far he was ready to go in order to nurture UK's "special relationship" with the USA. But before this controversy has started, before even he has closed the deal with the publisher, the ghost-writer gets unmistakable signs that the turgid draft he is tasked to put into shape inexplicably constitutes highly sensitive material. 

IMDb: 7.2

11. The Skin I Live In (2011) / Pedro Almodovar - SPAIN

In honor of his late wife who died in a flaming car accident, scientist, Dr. Robert Ledgard, is trying to synthesize the perfect skin which can withstand burns, cuts or any other kind of damage. As he gets closer to perfecting this skin on his flawless patient, the scientific community starts growing skeptical and his past is revealed that shows how his patient is closely linked to tragic events he would like to forget.

IMDb: 7.6

10. The Hunt (2012) / Thomas Vinterberg - DENMARK

Lucas is a Kindergarten teacher who takes great care of his students. Unfortunately for him, young Klara has a run-away imagination and concocts a lie about her teacher. Before Lucas is even able to understand the consequences, he has become the outcast of the town. The hunt is on to prove his innocence before it's taken from him for good.

IMDb: 8.3

9. Nymphomaniac: Volume 1 (2014) / Lars Von Trier - DENMARK

A man named Seligman finds a fainted wounded woman in an alley and he brings her home. She tells him that her name is Joe and that she is nymphomaniac. Joe tells her life and sexual experiences with hundreds of men since she was a young teenager while Seligman tells about his hobbies, such as fly fishing, reading about Fibonacci numbers or listening to organ music.

IMDb: 7.1

8. The Diving Bell and the Butterfly (2007) / Julian Schnabel - FRANCE

The true story of 43 year-old magazine editor Jean-Dominique Beauby who after suffering a stroke is found to have locked-in syndrome, where he is paralyzed from the neck down. He can see and hear but cannot speak, communicating only by blinking his left eye for yes or no. Literally trapped inside his body, he faces a terrifying situation despite the support he has from an an expert medical team and his family. It's only when his speech therapist Henriette Roi devises a system for him to "speak" one letter at a time by blinking his eye does the world open up for him. The film is based an Bauby's book, which he dictated, one letter at a time.

IMDb: 8.1

7. In Bruges (2008) / Martin McDonagh - ENGLAND

A Christmas story. Should one who killed a child be allowed to live? Harry Waters, a London thug, sends Irish hitmen Ken and Ray to Bruges to lie low after a job goes awry in a London church. Ken's the old hand, fascinated by the Medieval, with a fatherly attitude toward Ray, who's young and bored but chastened after the London job. Ray's disposition changes when he meets Chloë, a hip young woman who sells drugs on the local set of a movie featuring Jimmy, an American dwarf. Harry calls with irrevocable instructions. Ken balks, setting up a showdown in the town square. A pregnant innkeeper, dumdum bullets, and a code of conduct play into the resolution.

IMDb: 8.0

6. Cinema Paradiso (1988) / Giuseppe Tornatore - ITALY

A famous film director remembers his childhood at the Cinema Paradiso where Alfredo, the projectionist, first brought about his love of films. He returns home to his Sicilian village for the first time after almost 30 years and is reminded of his first love, Elena, who disappeared from his life before he left for Rome.

IMDb: 8.5

5. Black Book (2006) / Paul Verhoeven - HOLLAND

Israel 1956. Rachel, a Jew, rather unexpectedly meets an old friend at the kibbutz where she is working as a teacher. It brings back memories of her experiences in The Netherlands during the war, memories of betrayal. September 1944. Rachel is in trouble when her hiding place is bombed by allied troops. She gets in contact with a man from the resistance and joins a group of Jews who are to be smuggled across the Biesbosch by boat to the freed South Netherlands. Germans from a patrol boat murder them all however. Only Rachel is able to escape. She is rescued by a resistance group under the leadership of Gerben Kuipers. When Kuipers' son is captured after trying to smuggle weapons, he asks Rachel to seduce SS-hauptsturmführer Ludwig Müntze. Soon she will find out the attack in the Biesbosch wasn't a coincidence. 

IMDb: 7.8

4. Fanny and Alexander (1982) / Ingmar Bergman - SWEDEN

Alexander Ekdahl and his younger sister Fanny live a wonderful life. Their parents own a local theater and the extended Ekdahl family are close, spending Christmas together. Just a few weeks after the Christmas celebrations however, their beloved father dies. The children and their mother feel the loss greatly and Alexander occasionally sees his father's spirit in the house. After a period of time, their mother informs them that she is to be married to Bishop Edvard Vergerus, someone Alexander had already encountered over a lie he once told at school. The Bishop's house is a dreary place and the Bishop proves to be a strict disciplinarian who insists on all house rules being followed. After being caught in another lie, Alexander is severely beaten and his mother realizes she must find a way to send the children away.

IMDb: 8.2

3. The Celebration (1998) / Thomas Vinterberg - DENMARK

The Father turns 60. His family, which is a big one of the kind, gathers to celebrate him on a castle. Everybody likes and respects the father deeply...or do they? The youngest son is trying to live up to the father's expectations. He is running a grill-bar in a dirty part of Copenhagen. The oldest son runs a restaurant in France, while the sister is a anthropologist. The older sister has recently committed suicide and the father asks the oldest son to say a few words about her, because he is afraid he will break into tears if he does it himself. The oldest son agrees without argument. Actually he has already written two speeches. A yellow and a green one. By the table, he asks the father to pick a speech. The father chooses green. The oldest son announces that this is the Speech of Truth. Everybody laughs, except for the father who gets a nervous look on his face. For he knows that the oldest son is about to reveal the secret of why the oldest sister killed herself. 

IMDb: 8.1

2. The Secret In Their Eyes (2009) / Juan Jose Campanella - SPAIN

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.

IMDb: 8.3

1. Bir Zamanlar Anadolu'da (2011) / Nuri Bilge Ceylan - TURKEY

In the rural area around the Anatolian town of Keskin, the local prosecutor, police commissar, and doctor lead a search for a victim of a murder to whom a suspect named Kenan and his mentally challenged brother confessed. However, the search is proving more difficult than expected as Kenan is fuzzy as to the body's exact location. As the group continues looking, its members can't help but chat among themselves about both trivia and their deepest concerns in an investigation that is proving more trying than any of them expected.

IMDb: 7.8

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