10 movies and shows on Netflix and Amazon Prime Video that will help you learn about different cultures across the globe

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Over the years, homebound entertainment has developed drastically. With unconventional storylines, dramatic plot twists and talent from every region, it is now possible to be entertained in many languages. And while travelling for leisure has currently taken a back seat, you can, nevertheless, peek into the unique lives people lead across the world by way of films and TV shows that are presently streaming online. From shows that will have you rolling on the floor laughing to mind-bending dramas that will give you a history lesson, scroll ahead to check out the shows and movies that will help you understand the varied stories people represent across the globe. 

Ares 

Netflix's Dutch original will have fans of the horror, supernatural and thriller genres in a tizzy. Ares is the story of a terrible secret that Holland's elite are hiding. It makes you ask yourself, “How did a small country like Holland ever become so powerful?” A young, biracial girl gets inducted into Ares—the horrifying secret society that produces the country's leaders—and learns the truth. With eight episodes that span 20-30 minutes, Ares makes for an interesting series that can be binged in one go. 

Streaming on Netflix

Barakah Meets Barakah (2016)

A quirky romance set in Saudi Arabia (the first Saudi rom-com), Barakah Meets Barakah criticises the social conventions that constrict two lovers in an oppressive society. A wealthy blogger and a civil servant try to bridge the gap of the different social classes in this romantic comedy. Barakah Meets Barakah offers a dazzling insight into the life of those who rebel against the machine. 

Streaming on Netflix

Caliphate

Netflix's Caliphate is a riveting watch that offers a peek into the lives of radicalised teens who are conned into going to the Islamic State (Daesh) under the pretext of reaching heaven, only to have them married off to their soldiers. Centred around young Swedes and an impending attack on Sweden, Caliphate tells the story of a teenager hell-bent on defying her liberal Muslim parents and going to Raqqa, only to witness horrors. She desperately looks for a way back home, and encounters a formidable police officer who will do anything to save these girls and her country.

Dark 

Often compared to Stranger Things, Netflix's first German original, Dark, is anything but that. Dark is ominously binge-worthy and tells the tale of a town where children keep disappearing. Blending science into a storyline that wants to wage war on time itself, you will eerily await the outcome of good vs evil by way of a black hole that threatens an apocalypse. 

Streaming on Netflix

Fleabag

Gear up for dark British humour in Amazon Prime Video's Fleabag, written by Phoebe Waller-Bridge who also essays the role of Fleabag, a sexually liberated woman trying to find the meaning of life after a traumatic event that has caused her to be anxiously angry and confused most of the time. Fleabag's internal monologues and constant breaking of the fourth wall will have you in splits. 

Streaming on Amazon Prime Video

Jinn (2018)

A Jordanian Arabic supernatural drama, Jinn is a story of teenagers enrolled in a private school in Amman. On a field trip to ancient ruins of Petra, the group accidentally summons a jinn and must stop it from destroying the world. The mesmerising Middle-East comes to life with Islamic folklore sprinkled across the show. “Jinn seeks to portray the issues young Arabs face as they come of age, including love, bullying and more. We’ve heard from many members across the Middle East and around the world how much it has resonated with them,” reads a statement from Netflix to the Jordanian press.

Streaming on Netflix

Paatal Lok

An Amazon Prime Video original, Paatal Lok is a multifaceted investigative thriller set in Delhi, starring Jaideep Ahlawat, Neeraj Kabi, Gul Panag, Abhishek Banerjee, Swastika Mukherjee, Mairembam Ronaldo Singh, Ishwak Singh, and Niharika Lyra Dutt. The show juxtaposes the shiny lanes of South Delhi with grimy rural parts of the city, unfolding a story of desperation, religion and corrupt politics that ultimately leads to revelation. 

Streaming on Amazon Prime Video

Pequeñas coincidencias

Pequeñas coincidencia, or ‘Small Coincidences’, is the first original Spanish television series from Amazon Prime Video and is a romantic comedy. Created by Javier Veiga (who also co-stars in the series) is a show about two individuals who are searching for the love of their lives once they realise their biological clock isn't slowing down. “It’s not a niche romantic comedy but one with a very personal touch and notwithstanding aspirations of reaching a large audience,” said Nacho Manubens, Chief Content Officer, Atresmedia Studios to the Spanish media. 

Streaming on Amazon Prime Video 

Ragnarok (2013)

In a fictional Norwegian town, Edda, climate change and industrial pollution are wreaking havoc on the lives of people dwelling there. The cause of all these terrible issues are the Jutuls, the frost giants of Norse mythology and one of the richest families of Edda. That is, until Magne and Laurits, teen siblings arrive in Edda with their widowed mother. The boys start learning more about themselves as they grow exceeding powerful. Magne learns that he is the living embodiment of the Norse God, Thor. Ragnarok is Avengers fit for TV with Viking mythology coming to life. 

Streaming on Netflix

The Last Czars

The Last Czars is a docudrama depicting Russia's Czar Nicholas II of the Romanov dynasty, the last ruler of Russia, the revolution that changed the course of the region and the ending of a dynasty. A must-watch for history buffs, The Last Czars allows a glimpse into the lives of the royals of Russia and their eventual downfall. 

Streaming on Netflix

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