Although Christian critics tend to focus on popular films to stay relevant to a mass audience, many call attention to significant international films when possible. Often, because these foreign movies don't make the same assumptions as typical Hollywood fare, they are able to shed light on topics not usually discussed at the cineplex. In this edition of Film Forum, we look beyond the blockbusters and spotlight ten movies from around the world that have Christians talking.

The Color of Paradise

This Iranian tragedy, about a blind boy who shares a tender relationship with his grandmother but is despised by his widowed father, earned strong praise from Movieguide. The reviewer particularly praised "the joy and compassion that the son and his godly grandmother bring to the story." The family is Muslim, not Christian, and Movieguide says that "Christian and Jewish families can comfortably watch this very clean movie without being insulted or disturbed." God's presence plays a strong role in the film, particularly when tragedy strikes and the father decides to take his son away to learn a trade. "The movie includes … a nice visual representation of God's glory mercifully shining down on people," Movieguide's reviewer (presumably Ted Baehr, though the Web site doesn't name him explicitly)writes, "[and] makes clear … that it is the light of God which alone brings hope, peace and life."

The Closer You Get

In this comedy from Ireland, a group of bachelors in the remote village of Donegal try to lure American women to their annual village dance by advertising in a Miami Beach newspaper. John Evans of Preview criticized the film because "the bachelors definitely have sex on their minds, and their conversations are sometimes crude and ...

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