Ali: Fear Eats the Soul (1974, dir Rainer Werner Fassbinder)

“It will never work out. It’s unnatural”.

Ali: Fear Eats the Soul is a touching film about an elderly cleaning lady, played by Brigitte Mira, who forms an unlikely romance with a much younger immigrant worker, played by El Hedi ben Salem. Set in Germany, the film explores the themes of loneliness, love across cultural divides, and the effects of societal prejudices on personal relationships.

Portrait of a Lady on Fire (2019, Céline Sciamma)

“Do all lovers feel like they’re inventing something?”

Portrait of a Lady on Fire is a breathtaking love story about a female artist, played by Noémie Merlant, who is commissioned to paint a wedding portrait of a young woman, played by Adèle Haenel, on a remote island in Brittany, France. The film explores themes of forbidden love, societal expectations, and the power of art to capture and preserve emotions and memories.

In the Mood for Love (2000, dir Wong Kar-Wai)

“I sometimes wonder what I’d be if I hadn’t married. Have you ever thought of that?”

In the Mood for Love is a melancholic film about two neighbors, played by Tony Leung Chiu-wai and Maggie Cheung, who form a close bond in 1960s Hong Kong as their respective spouses are frequently away on business trips. The film explores themes of unrequited love, repressed emotions, and the complexities of human relationships.

The Umbrellas of Cherbourg (1964, dir Jacques Demy)

“Guy, I love you. You smell of gasoline”. ‘It’s just another perfume’”.

The Umbrellas of Cherbourg is a musical film about young lovers, played by Catherine Deneuve and Nino Castelnuovo, who must face the challenges of war and separation. Set in Cherbourg, France, the film is a timeless love story that explores themes of heartbreak, sacrifice, and the resilience of the human spirit. All dialogues in the film are sung, making it a unique and visually stunning musical experience.