Written by Sam Levinson for HBO, ‘Euphoria’ is an enthralling teen drama about the Gen-Z existence. The series opens with rehab-returned oddball dreamer Rue descending into the titular euphoria. She embarks upon a mostly one-sided liaison with Jules, who has a sugar daddy and a mysterious internet guy to keep her company. The story builds on themes of romance, identity, trauma, abuse, and teenage angst, among other things. We have a few movies at hand that hit the same sweet spot if you are needful. You can watch most of these movies similar to ‘Euphoria’ on Netflix, Hulu, or Amazon Prime.
7. The Double Life of Veronique (1991)
Helmed by auteur Polish director Krzysztof Kieślowski, Polish-French bilingual mystery drama movie ‘The Double Life of Veronique’ (‘La double vie de Véronique’) follows a mind-boggling premise. Weronika, a Polish choir singer, and Veronique, a music teacher, share the same face. They are not related, and neither do they know each other.
However, their paths intersect at fleeting moments in their lives, and they share an intangible bond beyond their national and linguistic identities. Irene Jacob delivers her performance of a lifetime in the roles of both the Veronique. ‘Euphoria’ is finally about finding one’s own identity while chasing after other things in life, and this cinematic masterpiece hits the mark quite well.
6. Requiem For A Dream (2000)
Darren Aronofsky broke into mainstream success with his second feature film, ‘Requiem for a Dream.’ The story borrows from the novel of the same name by Hubert Selby Jr. Sara Goldfarb is a single mother who spends most of her days gulping down reality television and weight-loss tablets. Her son, Harry, and his girlfriend, Marion, get embroiled in a spiraling drug addiction. The suggestion is that drugs are everywhere in the modern world, as are the dreams of making it big.
Featuring stellar performances from Jared Leto and Jennifer Connelly in central roles and characterized by extreme fast-cuts, this is a movie that gets into the minds of its hapless characters. If after ‘Euphoria’ you want another taste of the titular euphoria, this is an excellent choice for your next cinema destination.
5. The Dreamers (2003)
Italian auteur filmmaker Bernardo Bertolucci adapted ‘The Holy Innocents,’ the novel by Gilbert Adair, in the taboo romance drama movie ‘The Dreamers.’ Set against the backdrop of the student revolution in Paris in 1968, the movie follows a group of carefree elites in their utopian world. While protesting the firing of French film activist Henri Langlois, Matthew meets liberal twins Theo and Isabelle.
They spend their days re-enacting scenes from classic movies, if not living a wild erotic dreamscape. An opulent setting, a lively score, and an inspiring ending, complete with Edith Piaf’s “Non, Je ne regrette rien,” keep the drama alive. ‘Euphoria’ is quite dark at times. If you want something lighter, this movie has the same themes of teen romance, rebellion, and sexual awakening at its center.
4. On The Beach at Night Alone (2017)
Acclaimed South Korean filmmaker Hong Sang-soo directed the poignant and introspective drama movie ‘On The Beach at Night Alone’ (‘Bamui Haebyun-eoseo Honja’). The story follows Young-hee, an actress who escapes her country after the affair with her director, becomes the talk of the town. After landing in Germany, the alien surrounding makes her discover pertinent truths about life, love, and herself.
The scenes are soaked in serenity, and the silence soothes the ears. With precision in cinematography and editing, the movie is nothing less than a milestone in cinematic storytelling. If you are rooting for Rue in ‘Euphoria,’ we wonder whether Rue will turn out to be someone like Young-hee from this movie.
3. Slacker (1990)
Boy, does Richard Linklater know the pulse of the generation! The free-flowing comedy-drama movie ‘Slacker’ is a fine example. The film follows a day in the life of random eccentric people – mostly young adults – in the Texan city of Austin. We meet conspiracy theorists, hipsters, and people who do not have a damn clue about life – apart from the sweet-talking woman selling Madonna pap smear, who should have possibly won the salesperson of the year award. And there is Richard Linklater himself in a cameo presence, credited as “Should Have Stayed at the Bus Station.” ‘Euphoria’ captures the spirit of the generation pretty well, and if you want a similar foray into the 90s, this is a movie you should add to your bucket list.
2. Blue Is The Warmest Color (2013)
With Abdellatif Kechiche at the director’s chair and based upon the book of the same name by Jul Maroh, ‘Blue Is The Warmest Color’ is a heart-warming coming-of-age saga full of sunshine and lovemaking. Set in the 90s, the film explores the relationship between an artist and a high school girl. While Adele and Emma come close in their nostalgic journey, they belong to different worlds.
With a slow-burning pace and an ambient score, the movie invites its audiences to be immersed in the coming-of-age journey of Adele. Following ‘Euphoria,’ you may be looking for a film that chronicles LGBT relationships, and this is a film you should add to your bucket list.
1. The Breakfast Club (1985)
John Hughes directed ‘The Breakfast Club,’ one of the most iconic coming-of-age movies to date. Five high school students — each a distinct stereotype — meet in the detention room on a fine Saturday noon. They come to know each other’s eccentricities and insecurities a bit better and become close friends for the rest of their high school years. The movie toys with stereotypes, perfecting a teen spirit very few movies have been able to replicate. If Rue and the company in ‘Euphoria’ seem a bit too overwhelming, you can always come back to this heart-warming timeless classic.