Appreciating Culture in Movies

From romance to drama to comedy... and everything in between.

Thanks to our Root & Seed community for curating this incredible list of movies across cultures, genres, and decades. We asked a simple question: "What movie do you think of when you want to get in touch with your culture?" and we got back a list of classics, perfect to add to anyone's to-watch list.


1. The Joy Luck Club (1993)

Film Forum

This book to film adaptation is lauded as a first of its kind in Asian representation on the big screen, as it celebrates relationships and the sacrifices of immigrant parents.


2. My Big Fat Greek Wedding (2002)

Flickr

The complexity of cross-cultural unions is explored in this lighthearted movie. Using a wedding to dramatize cultural stereotypes, the film was popular and relatable amongst individuals from various backgrounds, with many inserting their own cultures in place of Greek.


3. Love Actually (2003)

fanpop

Although an unlikely candidate for this list at first glance, this movie features the blossoming relationship between Jamie (Colin Firth) and Aurelia (Lucia Moniz), and a heartwarming exchange of broken Portuguese and English during Jamie's proposal. The power of language and love!


4. Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham (2001)

Image credit: The Indian Express

This 3.5 hour epic portrays a traditional narrative of parental love and respect. Its significance is often written about, with some calling the film a marker between tradition and modernity in Bollywood film making.


5. Schindler's List (1993)

A little girl in a red coat walks alongside a German officer
Wikipedia

This highly awarded film brought the story of the Holocaust to the masses, opening up the doors for countless other depictions of the historical atrocity, and inspiring a willingness for individuals to document their own stories.


6. Minari (2020)

PremiumBeat

"A very real immigrant story down to the spice delivery by grandma," Minari depicts the experience of a Korean family in rural America, the vision of home, and what ultimately keeps a family together.

 

What movie do you think of when you want to get in touch with your culture? Let us know in the comments below, and we'll add it in the next roundup.