I really enjoy watching independent films. Mainstream films tend to either romanticize too much or forego any originality. Here are five independent films to watch.

Broken English
Parker Posey stars in this 2007 independent film as Nora Wilder, a single New York woman who is longing to meet Mr. Right. After experiencing two failed dates, Nora wonders if she will ever find love. While attending a friend’s party, she meets a charming Frenchman named Julien (Melvil Poupaud). With Julien’s carefree attitude, Nora begins to open herself up to new possibilities. This film is a great depiction of women who are struggling to find love and happiness. There is no over-the-top-dialogue, quirky sidekicks or fantasy ending, which makes this film all the more enjoyable.

Just Another Girl on the I.R.T.
I became aware of this film through BET. When I was in elementary school, I used to see commercials airing throughout the day for a contest to view this low-budget film. Once it made its way to my local video rental store, I had to see it. Just Another Girl on the I.R.T. is a story about a sassy, outspoken, no-nonsense teen named Chantel. Although she excels in school, her foul-mouth is an issue with those of authority. Chantel is anxious to graduate high school early and attend college, but she learns that she is pregnant. I’m saddened to know this film can be viewed on YouTube in its entirety. Please support black films!

2 Days in Paris
This indie comedy was written, produced, and directed by Julie Delpy. She also plays Marion alongside Adam Goldberg as Jack. Delpy casted the film with Goldberg, her former boyfriend, and her real parents. Marion and Jack spend two days in Paris after vacationing in Italy. During their Paris trip, the couple starts to question whether or not their relationship can be salvaged. I cannot wait to see the follow-up to this film with Chris Rock called 2 Days in New York.

>I Like It Like That
As a youngster, I would sneak downstairs at night to watch all the good stuff on HBO and Showtime. I knew my parents would not approve me watching any films on either channel late at night. Well, one of those films happened to be I Like It Like That. Lisette lives with her husband Chino (he was so fine to me) and her three kids. After Chino goes to jail, Lisette is forced to take care of the household. It never fails that I start to sing, “Yeaaaah baby, I like it like that!”

Muriel’s Wedding
Who remembers Toni Collette as the corpulent, unattractive Muriel? To escape her reality of being teased and ridiculed, Muriel listens to ABBA and dreams of her wedding. She decides to skip town with her friend Rhonda to start a new life. Everything seems to be a fairytale come true, but soon Muriel has to face some harsh realities.

Have you seen the aforementioned films? If so, would you recommend them? Do you have any independent film suggestions?

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  • HowApropos

    Love ’em ALL!!!

  • Great article!! Loves it!! I’m not an independent film lover, but this article may have conformed me. On my to-do-list this week, rent “Broken Arrow”……………sounds like a great movie- one I can relate to.

  • Stacy

    Just watched Broken English on Netflix!i need to step my indie film game up!

  • Sia

    Broken English is SOOOO Good! One of my favorite movies. Shout out to netflix for feeding my indie movie obsession

  • Shannon Frye

    I’ve got a few really great indies to suggest…

    “Alma’s Rainbow” – awesome story about a mother and daughter with different goals for their lives. Teenage and tombyish Rainbow is in love with hip-hop but her mother Alma – a failed musician – sees only heartache. This is one of my favorite coming-of-age films.

    “The Watermelon Woman” – Possibly director Cheryl Dunye’s best film to date. The story has aspiring filmmaker Cheryl (Dunye) trying to find out more about a black actress from the 1930s credited only as the Watermelon Woman. During her documentary, Cheryl must confront racism and homophobia and ponder who she is as a black lesbian.

    “The Incredibly True Adventures of Two Girls In Love” – Awesome awesome! It’s just a sweet and kooky love story about two girls from different backgrounds that become friends then something more. Nicole Ari Parker and Laurel Holloman were amazing as the teens in love. I suggest this film for anyone wishing to understand or be accepting to GLBTQ kids in their life. When I discovered this movie, it was the first time I saw a black lesbian portrayed at all: It made me cry to see myself on the screen and thankful for the representation.

    Just found the mag and will be suggesting Clutch to all the women in my life!! Great job, ladies!