If you’re learning Swedish and want to dive further, there is no better substitute than watching Films and TV-series from Sweden. Here are the 12 awesome Movies to learn Swedish.
Learning a new language is a hobby of many, as they find it fun. But if that language is Scandinavian, they say, it’s no fun. But it is nothing more than a misconception. Let’s understand the myth buster.
All Scandinavian languages have their roots in the Old Norse that in turn came from a ‘Proto-Germanic’ theory. As Swedish is a North Germanic language, there are lots of similarities with other Scandinavian Languages like Norwegian, Danish, and Icelandic.
Old English and German also came from ‘Proto-Germanic’ theory. That makes Scandinavian, German, and English language base related. Besides, the vocabulary of Scandinavian languages such as Swedish, and English, German, Dutch language have many common words.
Out of the five Scandinavian countries, Sweden has attracted a lot more admirers. There is an influx of people wanting to learn Swedish. Whatever may be your reason, learning Swedish can benefit you in your personal and professional career.
And what is better than learning a language with movies? The films could help better understand a language if it supplemented with great cinema. It is one of the proven and time-tested language learning techniques.
- 12 Must-Watch Swedish Movies to Learn Swedish
- 1. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2009)
- 2. Fanny and Alexander (1982)
- 3. Evil (2003)
- 4. Force Majeure (2014)
- 5. Let the Right One In (2008)
- 6. As It Is in Heaven (2004)
- 7. Persona (1966)
- 8. A Man Called Ove (2015)
- 9. Show Me Love (1998)
- 10. The Seventh Seal (1957)
- 11. Wild Strawberries (1957)
- 12. The Girl Who Played with Fire (2009)
- Final Thought on Learning Swedish with Films
12 Must-Watch Swedish Movies to Learn Swedish
Sadly, there are very few Swedish Movies, and Tv shows are available online. However, if you have the subscription of Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, etc., you can enjoy many movies and tv series. Since Swedish isn’t a difficult language to learn, these movies will surely help.
Here is a list of 12 cinematic wonders that can help you easily breeze through your Swedish lessons. Initially, try to watch with Swedish subtitles, if you can!
1. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2009)
Inspired from the book with the same name, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo is a crime thriller drama. A journalist joins hands with a computer hacker to unfold the dark mysteries surrounding a 40-year-old murder investigation. Digging deeper into the crime increases the risk of their lives.
With the use of everyday local language and some advanced vocabulary, the film is best suitable for intermediate-level learners of the Swedish language. This is my favorite all-time Swedish movie.
2. Fanny and Alexander (1982)
The Story-telling at its most beautiful! Ingmar Bergman’s Fanny and Alexander in 1982 has two versions — 312 and 197 minutes. This masterpiece has inspired several filmmakers across the globe. It is a stunning piece of Swedish cinema that is ambitious, compelling, striking, and superbly acted.
Set in Sweden at the beginning of the 20th century, the film follows the lives and adventures of two wealthy, brother and sister Fanny and Alexander Ekdahl. The story changes when their father Oscar dies from a stroke, and then their mother Emilie marries the Bishop Edvard. The film is about the universal truth — love, life, and death, and everything surrounding it.
If you’re interested in watching one of the best Swedish films ever made, this should be in your bucket-list! It has won several nominations and awards, including best cinematography at Oscar and best foreign movies at Golden Globes. You would like a simple vocabulary and easy-to-understand dialogues.
3. Evil (2003)
Directed by Mikael Håfström, Evil (Ondskan) is a 2003 Swedish drama film based on Jan Guillou’s novel with the same name. It is an epic cinematic and psychological study of adolescent cruelty.
Evil is a compelling tale about a 16-year-old boy, Erik, whose life has been disturbed by violence. After going through a rough childhood and the impact of a dysfunctional family, it makes him a violent teenager. Because of his aggressive behavior, the school expels him for fighting. He ends up at a private boarding school where the senior students control the young ones.
Whether he confronts his oppressors and face the risk expulsion? Or ignore them, and he, along with his friends, suffer the humiliation? Evil is one of the must-watch movies to learn Swedish. If you’re an intermediate level learner, you can enjoy this with English subtitles.
4. Force Majeure (2014)
Written and Directed by Ruben Östlund, Force Majeure, is a kind of disaster movie, as well as a dark comedy about a relationship.
It is a story about a Swedish family spending time at the French alps for a vacation. The weather was pleasant, and everything looked breathtaking. One day during their lunch at a mountainside restaurant, an avalanche turns everything upside down. Without thinking about family safety, Tomas flees the scene, leaving his wife Ebba and children to fend for themselves.
In minutes, the danger is over, and everything returns to normal. Then another avalanche took place in the marriage and family. The slow-paced film gives enough time to understand the accent and sentences and eventually motivate you to watch more movies to learn Swedish.
You may also like — (i) Chinese Movies to Learn Mandarin (ii) Movies to Learn Spanish (iii) Movies to learn Danish (iv) Learn Arabic with Movies (v) Films to Learn Russian (vi) Movies to Learn Turkish (vii) Study Norwegian with Movies
5. Let the Right One In (2008)
This film revolves around a young, bullied boy aged 12 years who strikes a friendship cord with his new neighbor. As the bond grows, the girl shares her darkest secret with him. The little girl, being a vampire, is involved in a series of local murders. She wants blood for her survival.
This romantic drama is best suitable for beginner-level Swedish learners for its simplicity and straightforward vocabulary.
6. As It Is in Heaven (2004)
Conflict brings crashes in friendship and creates enemies. That is what happened in this film.
Daniel Daréus, an international conductor, aspires people to create music that will open people’s hearts. His own heart, however, is in bad shape. After suffering a heart attack, he took early retirement in a village of Norrland in the far north of Sweden. The people ask him to help with the church choir, which he eventually agreed. Finally, he won the hearts of the people and rediscovered his joy in music.
As It Is in Heaven is a story of love, community, and redemption through a true believer’s faith in the transcendent powers of music. It is a fabulous film for people who are just learning how to speak Swedish.
7. Persona (1966)
Persona portrays the impact a person can leave on someone else’s personality. A stage actress suddenly stops speaking and is left alone with a young nurse in a beach house for recovery.
The film displays how their emotions mysteriously converge over the next few weeks, causing psychological problems. With one character being mute mostly, this film allows you to learn the Swedish language easily, even at the beginning level.
8. A Man Called Ove (2015)
The story revolves around an angry older man who has given up on life. He is short-tempered and tries to regulate block association rules all the time. This comedy-drama is full of humor throughout, including the famous ‘black comedy’ of Swedes.
The Oscar-nominated film gives you a taste of local Swedish culture when the grieving man befriends his new neighbors. The simple everyday language makes the film suitable for Swedish language learners at all levels.
9. Show Me Love (1998)
Show Me Love is a film on two teenage girls with entirely different personalities. The romantic drama integrates the dilemmas of the two while keeping it funny throughout the flick.
You will observe the emotional honesty brought in their relationship, making it sympathetic overall. Few surprises along the storyline keep you glued till the end. The film uses simple dialogue and uncomplicated vocabulary that can be useful for a novice student of the Swedish language.
10. The Seventh Seal (1957)
Directed by the legendary Ingmar Bergman, The Seventh Seal questions the purpose of human life and existence on earth. This masterpiece from the Swedish Cinema personifies death and displays the desperation of humans to live as long as they can.
The unusual story and stunning camerawork keep you interested in historical fantasy. With commonly used language and simple vocabulary, The Seventh Seal is a fabulous choice for elementary-level Swedish language learners.
11. Wild Strawberries (1957)
Another Ingmar Bergman film, Wild Strawberries, is a romantic drama that condenses the lifetime’s worth of experiences of a professor. The film uses iconic imagery, making it a true masterpiece of the Swedish Cinema.
The movie is about dreams and flashbacks of the aging professor help in dramatizing his journey to receive an honorary degree. The film has simple dialogues but some hard vocabulary making it suitable for intermediate and advanced learners of Swedish.
12. The Girl Who Played with Fire (2009)
A sequel to The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, this film lands the computer hacker in trouble, accusing her of three murders. Then she is on the run. The journalist has to perform all the efforts to clear her name from the crime.
The crime-thriller drama holds many mysteries, making it exciting to watch. With vernacular tongue and some advanced vocabulary, the film is suitable for intermediate-level learners of the Swedish language.
Final Thought on Learning Swedish with Films
If you love watching movies and television series and also studying Swedish, you’re in for a treat. Not only will watching Swedish flick and television shows help you learn the language, but it will also give you a window into the culture. It is an effective way to practice Swedish!
Swedish is one of the easiest languages to study, and when you combine with the films mentioned above, it will undoubtedly help you achieve language proficiency. If you want more suggestions or information, feel free to ask me in the comment session below. Happy Watching! Ha Det Så Kul (Have Fun).