Top 5 Foreign films of the decade for your quarantine watchlist

Most of the people during the lockdown are either investing their time in watching web series and movies at the digital platforms such as Netflix and Amazon Prime. Others are playing games on mobiles and laptops. So here I am to give a complete list of the best films of this decade to watch.

1)A Prophet(French,2010):

Realistic and raw in the way of many great French films, this one of the best prison dramas I have ever seen. Told by director Jacques Audiard through the eyes of an illiterate. French-Arab convict(played by Tahar Rahim), sketches the social hierarchy and subcultures inside a prison in ways that touch on wider issues of crime, immigration, and politics in France.


A French-German biopic about the terrorist Carlos the Jackal, the original screened-in Cannes was close to six hours. I settled for the 2.5 hours cut shown in New York. Rather than attempt a sprawling birth to death chronicle- the numbing flaw of so many biopics- director Oliver Assayas details a few of high profile operations. The story of this high born, Venezuelan playboy-killer with a flair for the dramatic has been retold often, most famously in ‘The day of the Jackal’ an adaption of the Frederick Forsyth book with a restrained Edward Fox in the lead role. Assayas, with a flamboyant Edgar Ramirez playing Carlos, will leave you feeling you know the jackal better.


Going to see ‘Parasite’ at a film festival before it was nominated for the Oscar and became an international sensation, I arrived with no expectations and was completely blown away. This table of class conflict is the best film I have seen this decade, and its message is bitingly relevant. The violent ending will challenge Indian tastes, but the description of obscenely rich owners living under the same roof with their desperately poor help will strike home.


Shot as one continuous take, this thriller from director Sebastian Schipperis improbably long at 140 minutes, but the tension builds slowly and takes off so fast, the last half hour left me unsure whether I wanted the drama to end as soon as possible, as never. Rooting for Victoria, the young Spaniard played by Laia Costa, to survive her unplanned stint as a courier in Berlin’s underground nightclub scene, I had not enjoyed suspense so unbearable outside the closing moments od Woody Allen’s Match Point back in 2006. But for edge-of-the-seat drama, nothing in my experience has topped ‘Victoria” before or since.

5)The MilleniumTrilogy(Swedish,2009-11):

Based on the global bestsellers by Nordic Noir master Stieg Larsson, ‘The girl with the dragon tattoo’ was followed to the big screen by ‘The Girl who Played the fire’ and ‘the girl who kicked the honest’s nest’. All three feature Noomi Rapace as ‘the girl’, a rape survivor with a mysterious past and a gift for hacking computers, and Michael Nyquist as her would-be protector at Millenium, a news magazine. The series maintains a fast pace and compellingly dark mood that Hollywood could not match in its action-oriented remakeof’Dragon Tattoo’, even with Rooney Mara and Daniel Craig in the lead roles. 

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