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18 films to watch before traveling around the world


It's time to explore.

Andrew Hoyle / CNET

There is still time to travel this summer. If you are like me, you have dozens of places in mind, including choices that are influenced by pop culture. Some travelers even plan their trips around movie attractions and immortalize their stops on Instagram. But not everything is superficial. Movies can actually give you an idea of ​​the past and culture of a country.

Taking time to assess the perception of a place or examine the scars of a country's past can enrich a holiday. Finding the right film can even make your journey from a trip to staging the perfect selfie into something much more significant and memorable transform a plane.

Note: CNET can earn some of the revenue from the sale of the products shown on this page.


A must : Midnight in Paris

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Daniel Terdiman / CNET

Why You Must See It: This Woody Allen movie should not be missed as you travel to the City of Lights. Midnight in Paris follows the structure of Ernest Hemmingway's memoirs of his time in Paris and revolves around the writer Gil Pender (Owen Wilson). Gil is on holiday in Paris with his fiancee (Rachel McAdams) when he mysteriously returns to the city in the 1920s. During most of the film, Pender follows a young Hemmingway (Corey Stoll) through the corners of Paris and meets famous figures such as F. Scott Fitzgerald, Cole Porter, Gertrude Stein, Pablo Picasso and Salvador Dalí.

Other films to watch: Amélie, Paris, Je T'Aime (Paris, I love you), An American in Paris, Funny Face and French Kiss.


film must be seen: The speech of the king

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Why You Must See It: The King's Speech, an impeccable examination of Queen Elizabeth's past, focuses on the father of the current monarch, the late George VI. (Colin Firth). After the king's brother abdicates the throne to marry, George VI, the next in line, with the help of speech therapist Lionel Logue (Geoffery Rush), has to overcome his stuttering to send his first war show when Great Britain in 1939 War declared. If you are still not sold by this outstanding cast for this film, Queen Elizabeth has awarded the film after a private visit her seal of approval.

Other films to watch: Atonement, The Imitation Game, The Queen, Shaun of the Dead and The Young Victoria.


Film must be seen: Hecho En México

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Acapulco is located on the Pacific side of the country.

Santi Visalli / Getty Images

Why You Must See It: Mexico offers more than what's found in shoot-em-up movies. To get a better idea of ​​Mexican culture, check out Hecho En Mexico, a documentary that focuses on artists and performers.

The documentary shows that Mexican music goes beyond mariachi bands, providing insight into breathtaking settings, vibrant festival music and the rhythm of everyday life around the clock.

These are the sights, sounds, colors, dances and spirituality that produced talents such as Diego Luna (Cassian Andor in Star Wars Rogue One), singer-songwriter Julieta Venegas, superstar Salma Hayek and more.

Other films to watch: Roma, Book of Life, Under the same Moon (La Misma Luna) and Frida.


Film must be seen: Australia

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Australia is more than just kangaroos, but they are so cute.

James D. Morgan / Getty Images

Why You Must See It: In addition to the great cast (Nicole Kidman and Hugh Jackman) and the director (Baz Luhrmann) of this great romance, Australia sums up an important time in the country's history.

Shortly before the Second World War, the movie stars the Australian Aborigines with the character Nullah in 2008. Some critics say that the film does not dive deep enough into casual racism and the politics of expulsion. However, a Herald Sun critic referred to the film as a "love letter to the Australian countryside and [its] history."

Other movies to watch: Tracks, The Dressmaker and Walkabout.


Need to watch movies: Slumdog Millionaire and Lion

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Why You Must See It: When you travel to India, look at these two cinematic jewels. Slumdog Millionaire and Lion are based on true stories that demonstrate the endurance of the human spirit. They both play Oscar nominee Dev Patel.

Leo is the story of Saroo, who gets lost in a train at the age of 5 and has to survive alone in Calcutta. He is eventually adopted by an Australian family and, years later, goes in search of his mother with few memories and modern technology.

In Slumdog Millionaire, the brothers Jamal and Salim Malik, living in poverty, have to take care of themselves After their mother dies When they grow up, Jamal falls in love with a childhood friend in Latika, trying to kill her to keep away from the crime that Salim chooses. When Jamal lands on the Indian version of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire, the hosts believe he is cheating as he tells his life and corrects the questions.

Other Movies to Watch: The Life of Pi, Trishna, The Darjeeling Limited and Monsoon Wedding.


Must have seen: Bread and tulips (Pane e tulipani)

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A gondola ride is almost obligatory for a visit to Venice.

OnlyPhoto / Getty Images

Why do you have to see it: If you go to Italy, you do not want something authentic Italian? In Bread and Tulips Rosalba (Licia Maglietta), a dissatisfied housewife, is left behind in a café during a bus ride. Her family does not notice her absence and so Rosalba decides to reinvent herself in Venice. She starts an adventure in the beautiful city, makes new friends and may fall in love.

Other Movies to Watch: Call me by your name, only in yours, on Roman holiday and in letters to Julia.


Film must be seen: The impossible

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Ko Poda Island is the perfect holiday destination.

Avalon / Getty Images

Why You Must See It : The impossible takes you into the lush greenery, crystal clear waters and pristine beaches of Thailand. The film also pays homage to the devastating tsunami in the Indian Ocean, which claimed more than 200,000 lives in 2004, the friendliness of strangers and the resilience of the people. The impossible is based on the true story of the Belon family. During the vacation, the Belons are separated as the massive wave hits their resort. The injured family members have to find each other again in the raging water. It's a movie that leaves you cold. Ewan McGregor and Naomi Watts give unforgettable performances. And do not forget to look for a tiny Tom Holland (Spiderman: Far From Home).

Other films to watch: Railway Man, The Beach, The King and Cemetery of Splendor.


Must have seen: Anne Frank: The whole story (two-part miniseries)

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Grab a bike as soon as you arrive at Getty G3 in Amsterdam

Why You Must See It: If you are going to Amsterdam, you probably also visit the Anne Frank House, where young Anne wrote her famous diary while she and her family were about to deport the Nazis hidden. There is no shortage of films to see the incredible young woman whose life was so tragically shortened. The film features Hannah Taylor-Gordon as Anne and Ben Kingsley as her father Otto Frank. Sometimes it's not easy to see, but it's an important part of the story.

Other Movies to Watch: The Diary of Anne Frank, The Book Thief, Memorials and Inglorious Basterds.


Be sure to see: Memories of a geisha

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Himeji Castle is a great day out while in Japan.

AGF / Getty Images

Why You Must See It: While memoirs of a geisha are classified as historical fiction, the film was adapted from a book by Arthur Golden. Golden's book reportedly used the life of Mineko Iwasaki, a real geisha, as a source. Iwasaki has denied some of Golden's testimony and published her own memoir, Geisha of Gion. Memoirs of a Geisha is a stunning 1920s film about a girl named Chiyo who is forced into bondage at the age of 9. Finally, Chiyo begins training to become one of Japan's most beautiful and influential geishas while World War II is on the rise.

Other Movies: The wind is rising, sweeping, 13 assassins and letters from Iwo Jima.


South Africa

Must be seen: Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom

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A sunset in South Africa.

Education Images / Getty Images

Why You Must See It: Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom follows Nelson Mandela's life as he protests in the 1940s against tyrannical apartheid and is then arrested and sentenced to life imprisonment. While in jail, his wife Winnie and her children keep the freedom movement going. Mandela became the first democratically elected president of South Africa and an inspiration to the world.


Must Have Seen: Disney Nature: African Cats

Why You Must See It: If you're more excited about the sights in Africa (or Africa) your Children are not exactly fascinated by the other film. Maybe you like Disney Nature: African Cats. The documentary was shot in the Masai Mara National Reserve in Kenya and follows two cat families. Sita is a cheetah mother with five adorable boys, and Mara is the boy of Layla and Fang, the rulers of her pride. It's a story about family and survival in a stunning African landscape. But if you're like me and tiny, baby animals trigger the waterworks for you. Just keep a box of handkerchiefs nearby ready.

Further Movies : Cairo Time (Cairo), The Last Storytellers: Stories from the Heart of Morocco and The Sheltering Sky (Algeria and Niger).

Polynesian Islands

Movie Must Be Seen: Moana

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These islands in French Polynesia are as close to paradise as possible.

Stuart Freedman / Getty Images

Why You Must See It: I'm not ashamed even to say as an adult woman that Moana is one of my favorite movies. Moana Waialiki is the daughter of an island chief and desperately wants to explore the oceans. When her island can no longer catch fish or keep grain alive, she learns that the demigod Maui is guilty of stealing the heart of the goddess Te Fiti. Moana embarks on a journey of self-discovery with Maui to save her island.

Other movies to watch: Kon Tiki, South Pacific, The country has eyes (routma) and heartbeats of Fiji.


Movie Must Be Seen: Endless Poetry (Poesía Sin Fin)

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Bergs off the Chilean capital [19659

Why You Must See It: See Chile from the perspective of a true Chilean. The vivid autobiographical film Endless Poetry by filmmaker Alejandro Jodorowsky gives you an insight into Santiago in the 1940s. Leaving behind his stern family, Jodorowsky immerses himself in a bohemian lifestyle that will stand alongside some of Hispanic literature's most recognizable talents. There, Jodorowsky sets out to become a poet.

More Movies to Watch: Behind the Sun, The House of Sand and the Kiss of the Spider Woman.


Must have seen: Pans Labyrinth

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Frederic Soltan / Getty Images

Why You Must See It: This is one of the strangest movies you could ever watch. Pan's Labyrinth was set in Spain in 1944, just after the Spanish Civil War. Ofelia lives with her stepfather and her pregnant mother. The reality fuses with the abandoned labyrinth finds of Ofelia and the magical creatures that inhabit them. Guillermo Del Toro's films never lack deeper meanings and beautiful camera work.

Other films to watch : Ocho Apellidos Vascos (Spanish Affair), The Queen of Spain and En La Ciudad (In the City).


Watch movie: Made in Jamaica

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A resort in Jamaica.

John Greim / Getty Images

Why You Must See It: When I think of Jamaica, I think of perfect beaches, swaying palms, vivid colors and reggae music. The music is an integral part of the culture of the country. Made in Jamaica is a musical documentary that shows how reggae has influenced popular culture. The film celebrates the influences of a music movement on R & B, rap and more.

More Movies to Watch : Chrissy, Elza (Le bonheur d & # 39; elza) and Home Again.


Movie Must Be Seen: Mao's Last Dancer

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At the Great Wall of China you will definitely get your money's worth.

DEA / Gianni Oliva / Getty Images

Why You Must See It : Mao's last dancer is the true story of Li Cunxin, who grew up in Maoist China. Li is released from his family and undergoes a rigorous training as a dancer. He was admitted to the Dance Academy of Madame Mao, but initially shows little interest in the performance.

Finally, Li is discovered by an American ballet director and joins the Houston Ballet in America. His three-month stay in America and his relationship with an American dancer make him question his life in communist China. Li is caught between his passion for dance, America and his home in China, where his parents are still living in poverty.

More Movies to Watch : The Last Emperor, Snow Flower and the Secret Fan, Seven Years in Tibet and Tiger Squatting, Hidden Dragon.


Movie Must Be Seen: Mamma Mia

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Picturesque streets in the Cyclades.

OnlyPhoto / Getty Images

Why You Must See It: Mamma Mia is a campy rom-com playing to the music of Abba, but the extensive camera work will transport you to the sun-drenched Greek islands. The story is about a young woman who wants to marry her father leading her down the hall. The problem is that there are three ways who that is. Her equally free-spirited mother is shocked when all three men appear on her island to see if they are the father.

Other Movies to Watch : Antigone, Captain Corelli's Mandolin and My Life in Rubble.

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