best foreign movies and tv streaming may 9

(Welcome to Pop Culture Imports, a column that compiles the best foreign movies and TV streaming right now.)

On this week’s Pop Culture Imports, it’s all about a few overlooked gems. First up is Burning one of the best movies of the year — foreign-language or not — which, like the strange Swedish fantasy-horror Border, got passed over by the Oscars for a Best Foreign Language nomination. There’s also the Chinese mega-blockbuster that no one has heard of, The Wandering Earth, as well as Stephen Chow’s classic Shaolin Soccer, and the sweet stop-motion animated series Rilakkuma and Kaoru. Let’s fire up those subtitles and dive into the best foreign movies and TV streaming. now.

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Border Meaning

How our stories take shape is worth considering, especially the weird ones. Let the Right One In novelist John Ajvide Lindqvist helped bring his story to the screen in Tomas Alfredson’s film of the same name — a tender vampire tale about belonging — a process he repeats for Ali Abbasi’s Border based on his own short story. As one of three screenwriters on the film (along with Abbasi and Isabella Eklöf), Lindqvist is tasked with yet another transmutation of meaning through a genre lens. Border, a film ideally watched with little prior knowledge, is best described as the story of Swedish border agent Tina (Eva Melander), an ostensibly “ugly,” Neanderthal woman with a literal sixth sense for crime, discovering the truth of her origins. Though in crafting a horror-adjacent tale in which European immigration is a constant backdrop without ever being a central focus — what is or isn’t metaphorical becomes fittingly borderless — the very concept of “meaning” becomes a tightrope act.

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Describing his time in Auschwitz, Jewish chemist and Holocaust survivor Primo Levi stated: “monsters exist, but they are too few in number to be truly dangerous. More dangerous are the common men, the functionaries ready to believe and to act without asking questions.” The line between man and monster is obscure and when a person is a witness to wrongdoing, their reactions reveal their true character.

Filled with supernatural folklore and social realism, Danish-Iranian director Ali Abbasi tackles the constructs of monsters and morality in his new film, Border.

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Fantastic Fest 2018 Recap Day 2

(Welcome to The Fantastic Fest Diaries, where we will be chronicling every single movie we see at the United States’ largest genre film festival.)

Welcome to Fantastic Fest, day two. In this diary entry: a deranged stop-motion allegory, an unpredictable thriller from the writer of Let the Right One In, a new horror movie from The Raid director Gareth Evans, quite possibly the best comedy of 2018, and a horror movie with an auspicious title.

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Jason Reitman's new movie

Juno and Up in the Air director Jason Reitman‘s new movie Tully hit theaters only about a week ago, but the director has already locked down worldwide distribution for his next movie, a political drama called The Front Runner that stars Hugh Jackman.

Meanwhile, the relatively new distribution company Neon – which has distributed movies like Ingrid Goes West, Revenge, and I, Tonya, – has acquired a “troll love story” called Borders after its premiere at this year’s Cannes Film Festival. Read more about Jason Reitman’s new movie and the fascinating-sounding Borders below.
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