Directed by Vanessa Jopp, ‘Faraway’ is a Netflix original multilingual romantic comedy. Set on a small island in Croatia, the movie revolves around Zeynep Altin, an unhappy woman living in Munich who is constantly taken for granted by her family. When Zeynep’s mother passes away and leaves her a house in Croatia, Zeynep flees from her life in the city. There, she hopes to discover a new perspective and a way to fix her life, but instead, what she finds is Josip Cega, a crabby argumentative man. Forced to share the same property with Josip, Zeynep navigates new Croatian waters and tries to save her old life from falling apart. In the process, she experiences life in a new light and rediscovers her happiness. If you enjoyed Zeynep’s transformative journey brought on by a mid-life crisis and are craving similar touching stories about self-discovery, here are some recommendations for you. You can watch most of these movies, like ‘Faraway’ on Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Hulu!
8. Brooklyn (2015)
‘Brooklyn’ is a Saoirse Ronan starer period piece set in Ireland and Ney York in the 1950s. This romance drama is directed by John Crowley and based on a book of the same name by Colm Tóibín. Eilis Lacey is a bright young woman who travels to New York in search of new prospects. There, as she discovers her independence, she also falls in love with a man named Tony. As Eilis spends more time in New York, her homesickness fades away, and her relationship with Tony deepens. However, the stability she had found in New York with Tony is quickly tested when she has to travel back home. There, she meets Jim and must now decide between her two futures.
‘Faraway’ is about a mid-life crisis, and ‘Brooklyn’ presents a coming-of-age tale. Both movies share some similarities but are still different enough to feel distinct. If you liked the themes and ideas shown in ‘Faraway’ but want to see a new take on them, you should give ‘Brooklyn’ a try.
7. Paris Can Wait (2016)
‘Paris Can Wait,’ a romantic comedy, is the feature film directorial debut of Eleanor Coppola. The story follows the story of Anne, as she finds herself undertaking a chance road trip to Paris with her husband’s business partner Jacques. On her trip through France, Anne, and Jacques encounter scenic routes, delicious food, and pleasant company in each other. Similar to ‘Faraway,’ the protagonist in this movie also questions her marriage through new experiences and ultimately finds her happiness.
6. Nights in Rodanthe (2008)
Adapted from the Nicholas Sparks novel of the same name, ‘Nights in Rodanthe’ is a romance drama directed by George C. Wolfe. It stars Diane Lane and Richard Gere and is an incredibly heartfelt, emotional story about love and second chances. Adrienne is a newly divorced mother of two whose life has dove unexpectedly into chaos. When she agrees to look over her friend’s inn for a while, she encounters Jack, the inn’s only customer. As the two spend time together during a storm, they grow closer and eventually fall in love. Adrienne from ‘Nights in Rodanthe’ and Zeynep both bear much resemblance to each other. Both characters try to work through tumultuous past marriages and rocky relationships with their teenage daughters.
5. Juanita (2019)
‘Juanita,’ directed by Clark Johnson, is a drama based on the novel, ‘Dancing on the Edge of the Roof’ by Sheila Williams. ‘Juanita’ follows the story of its titular character, portrayed by Alfre Woodard. Alfre is a mother to three kids who have all botched up their lives in some way or the other. Exhausted and in desperate need of an escape, Juanita picks out and then travels to a random city in Montana. There she finds the chance to revamp her life and find happiness among new people. The mid-life crisis both Juanita and Zeynep go through are similar and solved by a change of scenery. ‘Juanita’ tells an entertaining story of self-discovery with a satisfying character arc for its protagonist.
4. Eat Pray Love (2010)
Based on a memoir of the same name, ‘Eat Pray Love’ is the story of Elizabeth Gilbert. This Ryan Murphy romance drama stars Julia Roberts as its protagonist and tells the story of a fresh start through a worldly romanticized lens of self-discovery. After realizing the depths of her unhappiness, Elizabeth Gilbert leaves her husband and sets off on a trip to Italy, India, and Bali. In each place, she gains a new outlook on life and finds the contentment she had always wanted. ‘Faraway’ and ‘Eat Pray Love‘ share similar themes of fulfillment through escapism. Both protagonists from each movie also go through comparable experiences. In the end, they both find a way to rekindle the happiness in their lives.
3. Puzzle (2018)
Based on an Argentine film of the same name, ‘Puzzle’ directed by Marc Turtletaub. This drama is a film about the life of a housewife named Agnes and how she reinvents her life after finding her passion for puzzle-solving. Starring Irrfan Khan and Kelly Macdonald in lead roles, the movie focuses on Agnes as her character grows into her own throughout the story. Like ‘Faraway,’ the protagonist in ‘Puzzle’ also finds confidence and agency in her independence and learns to live life to the fullest. Both stories also include romantic plotlines that help Zeynep and Agnes on their paths to self-discovery. The overall light-hearted yet dramatic nature of this film will make it worth a watch.
2. Bread And Tulips (2000)
‘Bread and Tulips’ is an Italian rom-com directed by Silvio Soldini. Played by Licia Maglietta, Rosalba goes on a vacation with her family only to be left deserted by them. Unfettered, Rosalba decides to make her own way back home to Pescara, but somewhere along the line becomes an impromptu residence of Venice. In Venice, Rosalba forms new friendships and enjoys her newfound freedom. Fans of ‘Faraway’ will find a similar light-hearted story filled with entertaining and engaging characters in ‘Bread And Tulips.’ The protagonist of this movie, Rosalba and Zeynep, also share a likeness as they’re both likable characters mistreated by their families who find happiness in unexpected places.
1. Under The Tuscan Sun (2003)
‘Under The Tuscan Sun’ is a rom-com directed by Audrey Wells, starring Diane Lane and Sandra Oh. After finding out about her husband’s affair, Frances’s picture-perfect life starts to crumble. Stuck in a state of depression following her divorce in which she lost her house, Frances is urged to go on a trip to Italy by her best friend, Patti. When she comes across a charming villa there, she impulsively decides to buy it. As she begins her new life in Tuscany and restores her villa, she encounters new people and new experiences. In the end, like Zeynep from ‘Faraway Frances too, rediscovers her happiness.
The two movies share a lot of similarities, from the basic premise to the comedic yet heartfelt storytelling. Zeynep and Frances both leave their old lives behind and find fulfillment in new beginnings. If you liked the scenic and sincere story of ‘Faraway,’ then you should definitely add ‘Under The Tuscan Sun’ to your watchlist.
Read More: Is Netflix’s Faraway Based on a True Story?