Surrealism Film

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Surrealism Film

For Surrealism Film, there is no limit to the movies exploring this idea. We wrote about 25 of the top ones.

A Clockwork Orange (1971)

A Clockwork Orange
★★★★
★★★★
3.3 out of 4 stars

From Stanley Kubrick, starring Malcolm McDowell, Patrick Magee, Michael Bates, Warren Clarke
Rated R

A Clockwork Orange is a 1971 black comedy film written, produced, and directed by Stanley Kubrick, based on Anthony Burgess' novel of the same name. Set in a dystopian, near-future United Kingdom, the film follows Alex (Malcolm McDowell), a charismatic, psychopathic delinquent whose pleasures are classical music, rape, and ultra-violence. He leads a small gang of thugs (Pete, Georgie, and Dim) on a night of "ultraviolence" against a rival gang, as well as innocent bystanders. After Alex is arrested and convicted, he is chosen for an experimental rehabilitation program involving a controversial treatment known as the Ludovico Technique. After the procedure, Alex is no longer able to engage in violent behavior but is instead left with a deep sense of remorse for his past actions. The film culminates in a violent confrontation between Alex and his former victims, who have been given the opportunity to take revenge on him. The film is a commentary on youth culture, government control, and rehabilitation.

The Seventh Seal (1957)

The Seventh Seal
★★★★
★★★★
3.2 out of 4 stars

From Ingmar Bergman, starring Max von Sydow, Gunnar Björnstrand, Bengt Ekerot, Nils Poppe
Rated Not Rated

The Seventh Seal is a 1957 Swedish film directed by Ingmar Bergman. Set during the Black Death of the 14th Century, the film follows the story of a knight, Antonius Block, and his squire, Jöns, as they return home from a decade-long Crusade to find the plague ravaging their homeland. In a desperate attempt to save his life, Block bargains with Death, challenging him to a game of chess. The two set out on a long journey through the country, meeting people along the way and learning of their struggles and hardships. The film is a meditation on mortality, faith, and the human condition, exploring themes of death, religion, and the search for meaning in life. The film was an international critical and commercial success, and is considered a classic of world cinema.

Persona (1966)

Persona
★★★★
★★★★
3.2 out of 4 stars

From Ingmar Bergman, starring Bibi Andersson, Liv Ullmann, Margaretha Krook, Gunnar Björnstrand
Rated Not Rated

Persona is a 1966 Swedish drama film directed by Ingmar Bergman. The story follows two women, nurse Alma and actress Elisabet Vogler, as they retreat to a seaside cottage. Through a series of conversations, the two women explore their relationship and inner selves. As the story progresses, their identities become intertwined as their personalities merge and it becomes unclear who is who. Ultimately, the film is an exploration of identity, self-expression, and the nature of representation.

Underground (1995)

Underground
★★★★
★★★★
3.2 out of 4 stars

From Emir Kusturica, starring Predrag 'Miki' Manojlovic, Lazar Ristovski, Mirjana Jokovic, Slavko Stimac
Rated Not Rated

Underground is a 1995 black comedy-drama film written and directed by Emir Kusturica and starring Miki Manojlović, Lazar Ristovski, and Mirjana Joković. The film follows a group of people in the former Yugoslavia during the German occupation in World War II, and the tumultuous years that followed as they try to survive the chaos. The film follows a group of friends who, in 1941, are celebrating the creation of an underground movement in response to the Nazi occupation. After a failed attempt to assassinate the German commandant, they evade capture and hide in the sewers of Belgrade. Over the course of the film, they struggle to survive the hardships of their situation and the changing political landscape of the region. The film uses surreal and absurdist elements to portray the absurdities and absurdities of war, as the characters find themselves trapped in a never-ending cycle of violence and despair. It is a powerful indictment of the brutality of war and its devastating effects on the people involved.

Wings of Desire (1987)

Wings of Desire
★★★★
★★★★
3.2 out of 4 stars

From Wim Wenders, starring Bruno Ganz, Solveig Dommartin, Otto Sander, Curt Bois
Rated PG-13

Wings of Desire is a 1987 romantic fantasy film directed by Wim Wenders. The story follows an angel, Damiel (Bruno Ganz), who longs to become a mortal so he can experience the joys of life. To do so, he befriends a beautiful trapeze artist, Marion (Solveig Dommartin), who is struggling with a difficult past. As he gets to know her, he begins to fall in love and his strong desire to become mortal grows. Meanwhile, his angelic companion, Cassiel (Otto Sander), also longs to become human. The two angels observe the lives of humans in Berlin, forming an angel choir to provide comfort and solace to those around them. In the end, Damiel chooses to sacrifice his immortal life and make Marion his wife, thereby experiencing the joys of mortality.

8½ (1963)

8½
★★★★
★★★★
3.2 out of 4 stars

From Federico Fellini, starring Marcello Mastroianni, Anouk Aimée, Claudia Cardinale, Sandra Milo
Rated Not Rated

8½ is a 1963 surrealist comedy-drama directed by Federico Fellini. It tells the story of a renowned film director, Guido Anselmi (Marcello Mastroianni), struggling to cope with creative blocks, a failing marriage, and a hectic lifestyle. He retreats into fantasy sequences, borne from his own subconscious, as he attempts to create a new film. The film blurs the line between reality and fantasy, examining the director's creative process and the obstacles he must overcome. 8½ won the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film and is widely regarded as one of the greatest films of all time.

Brazil (1985)

Brazil
★★★★
★★★★
3.2 out of 4 stars

From Terry Gilliam, starring Jonathan Pryce, Kim Greist, Robert De Niro, Katherine Helmond
Rated R

Brazil is a 1985 dystopian science fiction film directed by Terry Gilliam and written by Gilliam, Charles McKeown, and Tom Stoppard. It stars Jonathan Pryce in the lead role of Sam Lowry, an ambitious bureaucrat in a futuristic world with a penchant for daydreaming. The film follows Lowry as he dreams of a better life while struggling to make sense of the oppressive bureaucracy he works in. When an innocent mistake leads to the wrongful arrest of a citizen, Lowry attempts to intervene but instead finds himself in a surreal odyssey of dark satire, mistaken identities, and bureaucracy gone awry. In the end, Lowry must make a choice between maintaining his status quo and risking his future for a chance at freedom and happiness. Brazil is a complex and layered film, blending elements of comedy, surrealism, and drama. It is widely considered to be a classic of the science fiction genre and was nominated for two Academy Awards.

Mulholland Drive (2001)

Mulholland Drive
★★★★
★★★★
3.2 out of 4 stars

From David Lynch, starring Naomi Watts, Laura Harring, Justin Theroux, Jeanne Bates
Rated R

Mulholland Drive (2001) is a neo-noir mystery thriller film directed by David Lynch. The film centers around two women in Los Angeles, Betty Elms and Rita, who become embroiled in a complex web of secrets and dreams. Betty, an aspiring actress, moves to L.A. to make it big in Hollywood, but quickly finds herself in a strange and surreal world. Meanwhile, Rita is a woman who appears to have lost her memory and is looking for clues to her identity. As the two join forces to unravel the mystery, they discover a sinister plot involving Hollywood, the mob, and a mysterious black box. As the story progresses, the audience is led through a surreal and dreamlike journey that never fully resolves. The film has been praised for its lush visuals, complex plot, and powerful performances.

The Holy Mountain (1973)

The Holy Mountain
★★★★
★★★★
3.1 out of 4 stars

From Alejandro Jodorowsky, starring Alejandro Jodorowsky, Horacio Salinas, Zamira Saunders, Juan Ferrara
Rated R

The Holy Mountain is a surrealist, mystical, and spiritual journey of transformation directed by Alejandro Jodorowsky. The film follows The Thief, a Christ-like figure, as he travels with eight spiritual guides on a quest to ascend The Holy Mountain and attain immortality. Throughout their journey, they must overcome numerous obstacles and spiritual tests in order to reach the summit. Along the way, they come to understand the illusions of life on Earth and the ultimate nature of reality. As a result, they are able to gain self-realization, culminating in a powerful and life-altering experience.

The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie (1972)

The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie
★★★★
★★★★
3.1 out of 4 stars

From Luis Buñuel, starring Fernando Rey, Delphine Seyrig, Paul Frankeur, Bulle Ogier
Rated PG

The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie is a surreal comedy written and directed by Luis Buñuel. The film follows a group of upper-class friends who, despite repeated attempts, can never seem to manage to sit down and enjoy a meal together. Their repeated attempts to do so become part of a bizarre dream-like sequence, interspersed with surrealistic imagery. Throughout the film, Buñuel satirizes the hypocrisies, pretensions and indulgences of the bourgeoisie. The film won the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film and has come to be seen as a classic of Spanish cinema.

The Fall (2006)

The Fall
★★★★
★★★★
3.1 out of 4 stars

From Tarsem Singh, starring Lee Pace, Catinca Untaru, Justine Waddell, Kim Uylenbroek
Rated R

The Fall is an epic adventure fantasy film directed by Tarsem Singh and released in 2006. It tells the story of a hospitalized stuntman (Lee Pace) in 1920s Los Angeles, who befriends and enthralls a young girl (Catinca Untaru) with his tales of fantasy and adventure. Together they embark on a remarkable journey that transcends both reality and fantasy. Along the way, they encounter a range of villains and heroes, including Alexander the Great, a bandit queen, a masked warrior, and a mythic beast. Ultimately, the duo must battle their own fears and insecurities in order to survive their epic quest.

That Obscure Object of Desire (1977)

That Obscure Object of Desire
★★★★
★★★★
3.1 out of 4 stars

From Luis Buñuel, starring Fernando Rey, Carole Bouquet, Ángela Molina, Julien Bertheau
Rated R

That Obscure Object of Desire is a 1977 surrealist film directed by Luis Buñuel and starring Fernando Rey and Carole Bouquet. It tells the story of an older, wealthy man's obsession with a young and mysterious woman. The woman, Conchita, is an embodiment of his desires and her refusal to give in to his advances only fuels his passion. The film follows their turbulent relationship as the man tries in vain to make her his own. In the end, Conchita is able to remain out of reach, leaving the man with his unfulfilled desire and the dream of what could have been. Through a dream-like narrative and surreal imagery, Buñuel tells a story of love and obsession, desire and despair.

The Devils (1971)

The Devils
★★★★
★★★★
3.1 out of 4 stars

From Ken Russell, starring Vanessa Redgrave, Oliver Reed, Dudley Sutton, Max Adrian
Rated R

The Devils is a 1971 British historical drama directed by Ken Russell and starring Oliver Reed and Vanessa Redgrave. Set in 17th century France, the film tells the story of Father Grandier, who is accused by a sexually repressed nun of witchcraft and the demonic possession of her and other nuns in the convent. As the investigation and trials proceed, the situation spirals out of control and culminates in a violent and chaotic climax. The film, which is based on a true story, explores themes of faith and superstition, as well as the corruption and power struggles of the Catholic Church.

Lost Highway (1997)

Lost Highway
★★★★
★★★★
3 out of 4 stars

From David Lynch, starring Bill Pullman, Patricia Arquette, John Roselius, Louis Eppolito
Rated R

Lost Highway is a psychological thriller directed by David Lynch, starring Bill Pullman, Patricia Arquette and Balthazar Getty. It follows the story of Fred Madison, a musician who is convicted and sentenced to death for the murder of his wife. As his death sentence looms, Fred begins to experience strange visions and events that lead him to question his own sanity and identity. The movie follows his journey to uncover the truth of what happened to his wife, as well as the mystery of his own identity. Along the way, Fred encounters a variety of strange and terrifying characters, from a sinister mystery man to a transformed jazz club singer. As Fred tries to make sense of his world, he slowly discovers the truth about himself and his wife's death.

Juliet of the Spirits (1965)

Juliet of the Spirits
★★★★
★★★★
3 out of 4 stars

From Federico Fellini, starring Giulietta Masina, Sandra Milo, Mario Pisu, Valentina Cortese
Rated Not Rated

Juliet of the Spirits is a surreal and fantastical 1965 Italian comedy-drama film directed by Federico Fellini. The film tells the story of Juliet (Giulietta Masina), a middle-aged Italian housewife who suspects her husband, Giorgio (Mario Pisu), of cheating on her with a younger woman. She begins a journey of self-discovery, seeking help from her grandmother and her spiritualist friend. Juliet's journey leads her to confront her past and her insecurities and ultimately find strength and solace in her newfound spiritual understanding. The film is filled with vivid imagery and playful symbolism, making it an entrancing and thought-provoking viewing experience.

Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (1998)

Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas
★★★★
★★★★
3 out of 4 stars

From Terry Gilliam, starring Johnny Depp, Benicio Del Toro, Tobey Maguire, Michael Lee Gogin
Rated R

Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas is a 1998 American black comedy road film adapted from Hunter S. Thompson's novel of the same name. Directed by Terry Gilliam, it stars Johnny Depp as Raoul Duke and Benicio del Toro as Dr. Gonzo, and follows the pair as they embark on a psychedelic road trip to Las Vegas. Along the way, the duo encounter a variety of drug-induced misadventures, including a run-in with a sinister policeman, an unexpected marriage ceremony, and a savage hunt in the desert. The film satirizes the excesses of the 1960s and 1970s counterculture, emphasizing the surreal and bizarre. Despite its box office failure, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas received positive reviews from critics, with many praising its visual style, direction and performances.

The Cook, the Thief, His Wife & Her Lover (1989)

The Cook, the Thief, His Wife & Her Lover
★★★★
★★★★
3 out of 4 stars

From Peter Greenaway, starring Richard Bohringer, Michael Gambon, Helen Mirren, Alan Howard
Rated NC-17

The Cook, the Thief, His Wife & Her Lover is a 1989 British-French avant-garde black comedy drama film written and directed by Peter Greenaway. It stars Richard Bohringer, Michael Gambon, Helen Mirren, and Alan Howard. The film tells the story of Albert Spica, a cruel and foul-mouthed gangster, who owns an upscale French restaurant. He regularly humiliates and insults the customers and staff, especially his wife, Georgina. She seeks solace and revenge in the arms of a quiet bookseller, Michael. Meanwhile, Albert's criminal underworld associates plan a major heist. The story culminates in a violent confrontation between Albert and his associates, and Michael and Georgina. As the violence escalates, surreal elements of the film become more apparent, as the characters come to symbolize the arbitrary nature of power and the brutality of life in a world without justice. In the end, the characters' violent actions are shown to be in vain, as Albert is left powerless and the thieves are thwarted. It is left to the audience to determine who are the real winners and losers.

The City of Lost Children (1995)

The City of Lost Children
★★★★
★★★★
3 out of 4 stars

From Directors: Marc Caro, Jean-Pierre Jeunet, starring Ron Perlman, Daniel Emilfork, Judith Vittet, Dominique Pinon
Rated R

The City of Lost Children is a 1995 French-German fantasy film directed by Marc Caro and Jean-Pierre Jeunet. It is set in a dystopian future where a mad scientist named Krank has the ability to steal the dreams of children. A former carnival strongman named One embarks on a quest to find the scientist and rescue his adopted brother Denree, who was kidnapped by Krank's henchmen. The quest leads One to a mysterious city populated by grotesquely deformed outcasts and strange creatures. As he searches for answers, One must confront his own inner demons and unravel the secrets of the city. Along the way, he teams up with a young girl named Miette, and they become unlikely allies in the struggle to save Denree.

The Blood of a Poet (1932)

The Blood of a Poet
★★★★
★★★★
2.9 out of 4 stars

From Jean Cocteau, starring Enrique Rivero, Elizabeth Lee Miller, Pauline Carton, Odette Talazac
Rated Not Rated

Eraserhead (1977)

Eraserhead
★★★★
★★★★
2.9 out of 4 stars

From David Lynch, starring Jack Nance, Charlotte Stewart, Allen Joseph, Jeanne Bates
Rated Not Rated

Possession (1981)

Possession
★★★★
★★★★
2.9 out of 4 stars

From Andrzej Zulawski, starring Isabelle Adjani, Sam Neill, Margit Carstensen, Heinz Bennent
Rated R

El Topo (1970)

El Topo
★★★★
★★★★
2.9 out of 4 stars

From Alejandro Jodorowsky, starring Alejandro Jodorowsky, Brontis Jodorowsky, José Legarreta, Alfonso Arau
Rated Not Rated

Natural Born Killers (1994)

Natural Born Killers
★★★★
★★★★
2.9 out of 4 stars

From Oliver Stone, starring Woody Harrelson, Juliette Lewis, Tom Sizemore, Rodney Dangerfield
Rated R

Videodrome (1983)

Videodrome
★★★★
★★★★
2.9 out of 4 stars

From David Cronenberg, starring James Woods, Debbie Harry, Sonja Smits, Peter Dvorsky
Rated R

Testament of Orpheus (1960)

Testament of Orpheus
★★★★
★★★★
2.9 out of 4 stars

From Jean Cocteau, starring Jean Cocteau, Françoise Arnoul, Claudine Auger, Charles Aznavour
Rated Not Rated

 



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