Lenny’s Netflix Review – Top 5 Foreign TV Shows on Netflix

Netflix is great, but sometimes there are too many things to choose from. I’m sure you have wasted lots of time just browsing through the many shows and movies trying to find something that interests you, only to be disappointed in the end. Some things you’ve never heard of end up being fantastic. Others you have heard of are just boring and often overrated. Luckily for you, I have watched(binged) way more Netflix than should be legally allowed in most states.

This Series of articles will focus on some of my personal recommendations, favorites, overrated, underrated, obscure, tv shows and or movies streaming on Netflix.

Lenny’s Top 5 Foreign Language TV Shows on Netflix

(List is in alphabetical order, followed by a brief summary of each show)

  • Fauda
  • Gomorrah
  • Lilyhammer
  • Money Heist
  • The Same Sky

Fauda (فوضى)

Cast of Fauda.

Fauda is an action filled, Israeli political thriller, centered around the main character Doron Kavillio (Lior Raz), retried IDF Spec Op’s, whos pulled back into service to finish a job he thought he’d already finished; killing a high level Hamas terrorist named Abu-Ahmed aka Taufiq Hammed (Hisham Suliman). The story is complicated further by Doron falling in love with a Palestinian Doctor (Laëtitia Eïdo) who ends up helping the man Doron’s trying to Kill.

The chaotically charged story does an excellent job at showing all sides of the Israeli–Palestinian conflict in a very real and gritty way. It’s uncomfortably addictive and easily immersive despite being subtitled and spoken in several languages. Fauda has received wide praises from Arabic and Israeli audiences for its realism and attention to detail.

Gomorrah (Gomorra)

Ciro di Marzio, Gomorrah.

Gomorrah is a modern day Italian crime drama dealing with the power struggle between Father, Son and outside interests all vying for control over the Neapolitan drug trade. Ciro di Marzio (Marco D’Amore), a high level member of the Savastano clan, has been tasked by Pietro Savastano (Fortunato Cerlino) head of the Clan, with keeping an eye on things, as Pietro’s wife, Immacolata Savastano (Maria Pia Calzone), takes temporary control of the family, while Pietro is spending time in prison. Ciro is also asked to help groom Pietro’s son, Genny Savastano (Salvatore Esposito), into eventually becoming the new leader of the Savastano Clan. But things are never as easy as they seem.

The show really digs deep into the seedy underbelly of the drug world thriving in Ghettos of Naples. It shows a very raw vision of, an extremely poverty stricken, yet proud people, feeding off of every opportunity they can find for survival. This often means getting into bed with the dirtiest people, who care of nothing but money, power and revenge.


Torgeir Lien, Lilyhammer.

Lilyhammer is a light hearted dramedy based on Frank Tagliano (Steven Van Zandt), underboss of the NY Mafia. Frank turns state’s evidence against his crew and enters the witness protection program under the alias “Johnny” Henriksen. “Johnny” goes into hiding in the small town of Lillehammer, Norway, where he befriends locals Torgeir Lien (Trond Fausa Aurvåg), who tries real hard to be “America cool”, and soon to be love interest, Sigrid Haugli (Marian Saastad Ottesen). Johnny decides to put a small crew together to “get the town in line”, while adjusting to his new life; or rather making his new life adjust to him.

The juxtaposition of a NY Mobster living in a small town environment, trying to navigate life in a very socialist country, with heavy handed, tough guy, mafia tactics, is brilliantly funny. This conflict also unwittingly illustrates pros and cons of both socialism and capitalism and the culture clash when one is forced upon the other.

Lilyhammer was the first of many shows billed as a “Netflix Original”.

Money Heist (La Casa De Papel)

Searching for weapons, Money Heist.

Money Heist, originally billed as “La Casa De Papel”, is a Spanish crime drama about a group of petty criminals with nothing to lose, guided by “The Professor”(Álvaro Morte), in pulling the largest and most ambitious “Money Heist” in history. The group take hostages and lock themselves inside the Royal Mint of Spain, while “The Professor” stalls the authorities. Part of this requires cunning manipulation to charm Inspector Raquel Murillo (Itziar Ituño) into falling in love with him, allowing him to control the entire situation from the outside.

Most of the show takes place within the 11 days needed inside the mint, to pull off this masterful caper. The group has much to overcome while dealing with 67 hostages, Federal investigators, negotiations, internal personal struggles, lack of sleep, the confusion of various failed police assaults, and even death. The Media believe it’s a robbery, when in fact something much more sinister is unfolding.

The story is told in real time during the Heist and as a series of flashbacks giving some personal history of many of the cast members, and vaguely highlighting their importance to the task at hand. Intermixed into all of the chaos is a love story between a character named Tokyo (Úrsula Corberó) and Rio (Miguel Herrán) which goes through various twists and turns throughout. I believe the intent was that the bigger story was supposed to be the love story, but the Heist is by far, way more interesting. 

The Same Sky (Der gleiche Himmel)

Cast members of The Same Sky

The Same Sky, originally called “Der gleiche Himmel”, is a German mini series set in 1970’s Cold War Berlin. The story is about the lives two families who become connected as an East German Romeo Agent named Lars Weber (Tom Schilling) is sent West to seduce a Defense worker Lauren Faber (Sofia Helin) and learn her secrets. 

This powerful series depicts the lives of the families on the east and the west sides of the Berlin wall showing freedoms taken for granted versus the ones that didn’t exist. It also illustrates the manipulation and depravity people are willing to endure to get what they want and how far desperate people will go for the slightest taste of freedom or love.

As always, let me know if you agree or disagree with any of my picks in the comments section down below. Feel free to make your own lists of shows or Movies you like streaming on Netflix.

About the opinions in this article…

Any opinions expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of this website or of the other authors/contributors who write for it.

About Lenny Ghoul 424 Articles
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