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3 Must-See Foreign Art Films!

Written by Natalya Gioiella. Published: May 29 2017


It’s too bad that foreign art films don't get more recognition. As far as experimentation and thinking outside the box goes, foreign art films are oftentimes way more mind-blowing than the average mainstream summer blockbuster. We also think it’s important for people to come together, whether they share common interests or not, to enjoy unique and interesting collaborations by talented directors, artists, and actors. If you can sit through 50 hours of Beyoncé's Lemonande, then you'll have no problem checking out these three brilliant projects!


1. Cezane and I

The two Guillaumes, Canet and Galliennne, come together in Daniele Thompson’s Cezane and I to give viewers an insight into what it was like to be caught in one of the most epic and drama fueled bromances of all time, between Paul Cezane and Emile Zola, a French writer. The film follows the almost-50-year-old Cezane on his mission to confront Zola about his novel L’Oevure, as he feels that the main character is someone who he relates to far too closely -- aka an ambitious but not entirely successful painter. He would probably be content with reminiscing about how the pair became pals in school and grew up sharing a love for art and women, and he would also probably be content with having Zola focus on their past childhood as Zola grew up poor and Cezane while he grew up rich. But that was not the case. So, for those who enjoy lots of drama, or for those who are either fluent in French or who are trying to learn French, this movie is also for you. If you need further convincing, the trailer begins with a fight breaking out in a museum, Paul and Emile both tumbling onto the floor, and thus their friendship begins. From there, the film follows how they manage to make their friendship last, each exploring their own artistry and each being deeply involved in each other's lives in how they find love and inspiration for their work. Relatable and inspirational.




2. Loving Vincent

Dorota Kobiela directed this film about one of the most beloved painters in our generation, Vincent Van Gogh, but with a unique twist... The 800 letters that were written by Van Gogh were used to comprise the overall plot of the film, allowing viewers the chance to see the personal connections the artist made over the course of his life and understand what exactly happened with those who investigated his death. Most of us know that Van Gogh sadly shot himself in a field with his revolver and died only a couple days later, but some don’t know the reason why he did this. You just have to watch to find out. But what’s even more interesting than this plot is how the film was shot. Over 100 painters, after being accepted via application, contributed to recreating more than 56,000 hand-drawn paintings and 12 hand-made oil paintings per second. Yep, each frame of this film is an oil painting done in Van Gogh's now-signature style. How cool is that? We think it’s going to be one of the best foreign art films this generation has ever seen. The trailer will not only make you smile but it will glue your eyes to the screen, marvelling at the work and detail that went into creating it. It’s so interesting to see Van Gogh’s paintings come alive.




3. Timbuktu

Timbuktu is a 2015 film about trying to find happiness as the Jihadists reign, determined to control and take away everything the people love, from their faith, music, laughter, cigarettes, and soccer and how this one family’s fate suddenly changes as the father defies what the Jihadists stand for. While the plot is quite heavy and very depressing, it’s a beautifully done film both linguisticality, cinematically, and talent-wise. It’s interesting what some will do to try to keep their families together.




So if there are any art lovers out there, fans of foreign art films, or people who love watching good movies, go watch the films on this list. We think you’ll really enjoy them.


(Image via Good Deed Entertainment/YouTube)


- Natalya Gioiella, YH Contributing Writer