Surrealist Films

Updated
Surrealist Films

Multiple films have explored Surrealist Films. Here are 25 of the top ones.

Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1964)

Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb
★★★★
★★★★
3.4 out of 4 stars

From Stanley Kubrick, starring Peter Sellers, George C. Scott, Sterling Hayden, Keenan Wynn
Rated PG

Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb is a dark comedy directed by Stanley Kubrick and starring Peter Sellers, George C. Scott, and Slim Pickens. The film follows the story of a paranoid U.S. Air Force general who orders a nuclear attack on the Soviet Union without authorization from his superiors. In response, the Soviet Union launches its own nuclear weapons, setting off an escalating crisis. As the clock ticks down, a group of political and military leaders, including a former Nazi scientist, attempt to prevent a potential nuclear holocaust. The film satirizes the Cold War paranoia of the time and is widely considered to be one of the greatest films of all time.

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 dystopian crime film directed by Stanley Kubrick and based on the 1962 novel by Anthony Burgess. The film follows Alex DeLarge (Malcolm McDowell), a charismatic, psychopathic delinquent whose pleasure-seeking antics lands him in trouble with the authorities. After being arrested and convicted of murder and rape, Alex agrees to undergo a controversial new treatment designed to correct his violent behavior. The story is seen through Alex's highly distorted perspective and is filled with vivid imagery and an unconventional soundtrack. As Alex experiences the drastic changes the treatment brings, he is forced to contemplate the morality of his actions and the value of free will.

Toy Story (1995)

Toy Story
★★★★
★★★★
3.3 out of 4 stars

From John Lasseter, starring Tom Hanks, Tim Allen, Don Rickles, Jim Varney
Rated G

Toy Story is a 1995 computer-animated family film directed by John Lasseter. It follows the adventures of Woody, a pull-string cowboy doll, and Buzz Lightyear, a space ranger action figure, as they try to return to their owner Andy. Along the way they make new friends, go through thrilling adventures, and ultimately learn what it means to be a toy. The film has become a classic and has spawned two sequels, as well as a number of spin-off TV shows and video games. Toy Story won numerous awards and is widely considered to be one of the greatest animated films of all time.

Pan's Labyrinth (2006)

Pan's Labyrinth
★★★★
★★★★
3.3 out of 4 stars

From Guillermo del Toro, starring Ivana Baquero, Ariadna Gil, Sergi López, Maribel Verdú
Rated R

Pan's Labyrinth is a 2006 Spanish-Mexican dark fantasy drama film written and directed by Guillermo del Toro. Set in Spain in 1944, the film follows a young girl named Ofelia whose life takes a dark turn when her mother remarries an oppressive fascist captain. To escape the real world, Ofelia escapes into a mythical realm filled with strange creatures and challenges she must overcome in order to reclaim her true identity. Along the way, Ofelia must confront the brutal reality of her new life, while bravely facing the monsters that linger within her imagination. Pan's Labyrinth is a critically acclaimed film, winning numerous awards and praise for its captivating story, powerful visuals, and unforgettable characters.

The Elephant Man (1980)

The Elephant Man
★★★★
★★★★
3.3 out of 4 stars

From David Lynch, starring Anthony Hopkins, John Hurt, Anne Bancroft, John Gielgud
Rated PG

The Elephant Man is a 1980 British-American biographical drama film directed by David Lynch, and starring John Hurt, Anthony Hopkins, Anne Bancroft, John Gielgud, Wendy Hiller, Michael Elphick, Hannah Gordon, and Freddie Jones. The film follows the story of John Merrick, a severely deformed man in late 19th century London who is discovered by a doctor and admitted to a hospital. Despite his appearance, Merrick is intelligent and articulate, and forms a strong bond with the hospital's sympathetic staff. He gradually gains acceptance into high society, and eventually moves to a home where he can live in peace and be accepted for who he is. The film is a powerful exploration of human dignity, the treatment of people who are different, and the power of love.

Groundhog Day (1993)

Groundhog Day
★★★★
★★★★
3.2 out of 4 stars

From Harold Ramis, starring Bill Murray, Andie MacDowell, Chris Elliott, Stephen Tobolowsky
Rated PG

Groundhog Day is a 1993 American fantasy comedy film starring Bill Murray as Phil Connors, a weatherman who is sent to Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, to cover the annual Groundhog Day festivities. After an initially unpleasant journey, Phil awakens to find that he is living the same day over and over again with no memory of the previous days. He gradually comes to realize that he is doomed to relive the same day until he learns to change his behavior and outlook on life. Through trial and error, Phil eventually manages to transform his life, becoming a better person in the process. The film is noted for its philosophical exploration of existentialism, self-reflection, and personal growth.

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 psychological drama film directed by Ingmar Bergman and starring Bibi Andersson and Liv Ullmann. It follows a nurse, Alma, and her patient, Elisabet, who is a famous stage actress and has gone mute. Alma is tasked to care for her and help her return to her normal self. As Alma and Elisabet spend more time together, a strange relationship begins to form and Alma's own identity begins to blur. The film explores themes of identity, communication, and the relationship between artist and audience. By using unconventional narrative techniques and exploring difficult psychological concepts, Bergman creates an intense and unforgettable experience that has become a milestone in cinematic history.

Three Colors: Red (1994)

Three Colors: Red
★★★★
★★★★
3.2 out of 4 stars

From Krzysztof Kieslowski, starring Irène Jacob, Jean-Louis Trintignant, Frédérique Feder, Jean-Pierre Lorit
Rated R

Three Colors: Red is an award-winning 1994 drama film directed by Krzysztof Kieslowski. It is the third installment of Kieslowski's Three Colors trilogy, which explores the French Revolutionary ideals of liberty, equality, and fraternity; the film is thematically centered on the concept of fraternity. The story follows the life of a young law student, Valentine, who discovers a mysterious connection with an elderly retired judge, Joseph Kern, and a young hairdresser, Auguste. As their lives intertwine, Valentine discovers the power of friendship and how it can affect the lives of those around her. Through their relationship, Valentine and Joseph become confidants, helping each other to confront their personal demons. The film brings to light the power of human connections and how the simple act of kindness can have a lasting impact.

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 film by director Emir Kusturica, set in Yugoslavia during World War II and the Yugoslav Wars of the 1990s. The film follows two friends, Marko and Blacky, as they become involved in an underground resistance movement against the Nazi occupation of Belgrade. The film follows their friendship, love, and loyalty, as well as their passion for life and music, as they struggle to survive the chaos of war. In the end, Marko and Blacky are forced to make an impossible choice between their dreams of freedom and the safety of their families. The film is a powerful exploration of the human cost of war and the power of friendship and loyalty.

Paris, Texas (1984)

Paris, Texas
★★★★
★★★★
3.2 out of 4 stars

From Wim Wenders, starring Harry Dean Stanton, Nastassja Kinski, Dean Stockwell, Sam Berry
Rated R

Paris, Texas follows the story of Travis Henderson (Harry Dean Stanton), a drifter who has been missing for four years. After emerging from the desert, Travis is tracked down by his brother Walt (Dean Stockwell) and taken back to Los Angeles. It soon becomes apparent that Travis has endured a traumatic experience, and he and Walt embark on a journey through the Texas countryside in search of his estranged wife, Jane (Nastassja Kinski), and son, Hunter (Hunter Carson). As Travis and Walt journey through Texas, they must confront the secrets of their past and the pain of their separation, while also discovering a newfound connection and understanding of one another. The film also features a soulful score by Ry Cooder and a haunting performance by Harry Dean Stanton.

Monsters, Inc. (2001)

Monsters, Inc.
★★★★
★★★★
3.2 out of 4 stars

From Directors: Pete Docter, David Silverman, Lee Unkrich, starring Billy Crystal, John Goodman, Mary Gibbs, Steve Buscemi
Rated G

Monsters, Inc. is a 2001 animated adventure comedy film produced by Pixar and directed by Pete Docter, David Silverman, and Lee Unkrich. The film follows the adventures of two monsters, Sulley (voiced by John Goodman) and Mike (voiced by Billy Crystal), who work at Monsters, Inc., a scare factory which generates power for Monstropolis by harvesting the screams of children. After Sulley and Mike accidentally let a young girl named Boo into Monstropolis, they must find a way to return her back to her bedroom before the Child Detection Agency catches her. Along the way, they discover a dastardly plot by the company's CEO, Waternoose, to use children to generate more power than ever before. In the end, Sulley and Mike save Boo and restore Monsters, Inc. to its rightful place in the monster world.

Donnie Darko (2001)

Donnie Darko
★★★★
★★★★
3.2 out of 4 stars

From Richard Kelly, starring Jake Gyllenhaal, Jena Malone, Mary McDonnell, Holmes Osborne
Rated R

Donnie Darko is a psychological thriller set in 1988. It follows the story of Donnie Darko, a troubled teenager from the fictional town of Middlesex, Virginia. Donnie is plagued by visions of a giant rabbit named Frank who tells him the world will end in 28 days. As he begins to act out on Frank's instructions, Donnie is drawn into a mysterious and dangerous world of time travel, alternate realities, and potential apocalypse. Along the way, he discovers the power of love and friendship, as well as the consequences of his actions. As Donnie draws closer to the day of destruction, he must figure out how to save the world, as well as himself.

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 surrealist comedy-drama film directed by Federico Fellini. The film follows the life of Guido Anselmi, a director tormented by the pressure to make his next project, while simultaneously struggling with the anxieties of life and love. Through Guido’s journey, the film explores the themes of creativity, identity and memory. The film follows Guido as he attempts to come to terms with his inner conflicts and reconcile with his past, while also attempting to create his latest movie. Through a series of dream-like sequences, the film examines the complex relationship between art and reality as Guido comes to terms with his identity and his work. 8½ is widely considered to be one of Fellini's greatest masterpieces and has been praised for its groundbreaking style and innovative use of imagery.

Magnolia (1999)

Magnolia
★★★★
★★★★
3.2 out of 4 stars

From Paul Thomas Anderson, starring Tom Cruise, Jason Robards, Julianne Moore, Philip Seymour Hoffman
Rated R

Magnolia is a 1999 American drama film written, co-produced, and directed by Paul Thomas Anderson. Set in San Fernando Valley, the film follows multiple characters, including a dying father and his estranged son, a police officer, a young genius, and an aging ex-child TV star. It tells their stories as they become intertwined due to their shared experiences of pain, loss, and redemption. Interweaving several storylines, the film examines the human condition and the complexity of relationships. It was nominated for three Academy Awards, including Best Supporting Actor for Tom Cruise.

Beauty and the Beast (1991)

Beauty and the Beast
★★★★
★★★★
3.2 out of 4 stars

From Directors: Gary Trousdale, Kirk Wise, starring Paige O'Hara, Robby Benson, Jesse Corti, Rex Everhart
Rated G

Beauty and the Beast is a classic animated musical fantasy film from 1991, directed by Gary Trousdale and Kirk Wise. It follows the story of Belle, a smart and independent young woman who is held captive in a mysterious castle by a cursed Beast. In order to break the spell that has been cast over the Beast and his castle, Belle must learn to look past his monstrous exterior and see the kind heart within. Along the way, she also learns valuable lessons about courage, kindness and love. With help from the castle's enchanted objects, Belle and the Beast eventually fall in love and the curse is broken. With its beautiful animation, memorable characters and uplifting message, Beauty and the Beast remains one of the most beloved Disney films of all time.

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 is a surreal mystery-drama film written and directed by David Lynch. The story follows a young woman named Betty Elms (Naomi Watts) who arrives in Los Angeles in search of fame and fortune. She soon meets and befriends an amnesiac woman (Laura Harring) who cannot remember her identity. The two investigate the strange and surreal occurrences that seem to be connected to a dark conspiracy as they search for the truth behind the woman's identity. Along the way, they uncover secrets of corruption, betrayal, and deception that could have far-reaching consequences. The film features dream-like sequences and a haunting soundtrack, creating a surreal atmosphere that adds to the film's enigmatic atmosphere.

Three Colors: Blue (1993)

Three Colors: Blue
★★★★
★★★★
3.2 out of 4 stars

From Krzysztof Kieslowski, starring Juliette Binoche, Zbigniew Zamachowski, Julie Delpy, Benoît Régent
Rated R

Three Colors: Blue follows Julie (Juliette Binoche), a French woman who is struggling to cope with the death of her husband, a famous composer, and their young daughter in a terrible car accident. As Julie attempts to start a new life, she begins to explore her inner senses, her identity, and her world around her. As she slowly reconstructs her life, the film follows her journey of letting go of her past, learning to live alone, and eventually finding a new way of happiness. Along the way, she meets her dead husband's mistress, her best friend, and a young student who helps her to realize that life can still be beautiful even after tragedy.

Edward Scissorhands (1990)

Edward Scissorhands
★★★★
★★★★
3.2 out of 4 stars

From Tim Burton, starring Johnny Depp, Winona Ryder, Dianne Wiest, Anthony Michael Hall
Rated PG-13

Edward Scissorhands is a 1990 fantasy romance film directed by Tim Burton. It stars Johnny Depp as an unfinished creation of an eccentric inventor, Edward Scissorhands, who has scissors for hands. After being discovered living alone in a castle for years, Edward is taken in by a suburban family and welcomed into their community. However, due to his scissors, Edward struggles to fit in and is met with both kindness and cruelty. As he is discovering his newfound freedom and acceptance, his past catches up with him and he is forced to confront his destiny. Edward must choose between staying with the family that has grown to love him or return to the castle and his creator. With themes of acceptance, identity, and love, Edward Scissorhands is a unique and timeless classic.

Toy Story 2 (1999)

Toy Story 2
★★★★
★★★★
3.2 out of 4 stars

From Directors: John Lasseter, Ash Brannon, Lee Unkrich, starring Tom Hanks, Tim Allen, Joan Cusack, Kelsey Grammer
Rated G

Toy Story 2 is a beloved animated sequel from Pixar and Disney, directed by John Lasseter, Ash Brannon, and Lee Unkrich. The film follows Woody, a pull-string cowboy, and his friends, including the spud-loving Mr. Potato Head, as they try to save their owner Andy's beloved toy, Woody, from the greedy toy collector, Al. Along the way, Woody and the gang must deal with an evil toy, Stinky Pete, and an old prospector, and they make new friends, including Jessie the cowgirl and Bullseye the trusty steed. In the end, Woody and his friends learn the importance of friendship, loyalty and working together to achieve a common goal.

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 surrealist comedy directed by Luis Buñuel in 1972. The film follows a group of aristocrats and their futile attempts to have dinner together. Every time the group attempts to enjoy a meal, something unexpected and bizarre happens, interrupting them. This includes a military coup, a ghost, a dream, and a police investigation. As the film progresses, it becomes more and more unclear if these events are actually happening or not, with the decadent characters unknowingly participating in an absurd, dreamlike reality. Ultimately, the characters are left with no resolution as they are perpetually denied their dinner.

Ed Wood (1994)

Ed Wood
★★★★
★★★★
3.1 out of 4 stars

From Tim Burton, starring Johnny Depp, Martin Landau, Sarah Jessica Parker, Patricia Arquette
Rated R

Ed Wood is a biographical comedy-drama film directed by Tim Burton, starring Johnny Depp as the eponymous director. It tells the story of the life and career of Ed Wood, an amateur filmmaker considered to be one of the worst in history. Ed is portrayed as an optimistic and ambitious dreamer, but his films are filled with technical and artistic errors and have been panned by critics and audiences alike. Despite this, Ed continues to make films with his friends, including the iconic Plan 9 from Outer Space, and his determination to succeed in his passion is inspiring. The film follows Ed's struggles in trying to make a name for himself in the film industry, ultimately revealing his true character and commitment to his art.

Being John Malkovich (1999)

Being John Malkovich
★★★★
★★★★
3.1 out of 4 stars

From Spike Jonze, starring John Cusack, Cameron Diaz, Catherine Keener, John Malkovich
Rated R

Being John Malkovich is a 1999 dark comedy directed by Spike Jonze and written by Charlie Kaufman. It follows a puppeteer named Craig Schwartz (John Cusack) who discovers a portal that leads into the mind of actor John Malkovich (portrayed by himself). Craig and a co-worker, Maxine (Catherine Keener), hatch a plan to charge people money to take turns being Malkovich for fifteen minutes. As their plan takes off, Malkovich becomes aware of the portal and starts to hunt down Craig and Maxine. Meanwhile, Craig's wife, Lotte (Cameron Diaz), discovers the portal and also begins to use it to experience what it's like to be a famous actor. The film follows the various characters as they grapple with the implications of being able to enter someone else’s mind. In the end, all the characters accept the consequences of their actions, and choose to move on with their lives.

Mr. Nobody (2009)

Mr. Nobody
★★★★
★★★★
3.1 out of 4 stars

From Jaco Van Dormael, starring Jared Leto, Sarah Polley, Diane Kruger, Linh-Dan Pham
Rated R

Mr. Nobody is a 2009 science fiction drama film starring Jared Leto and written and directed by Jaco Van Dormael. It tells the story of Nemo Nobody, a 118-year-old man who is the last mortal on Earth after the human race has achieved quasi-immortality. As he looks back at his life, Nemo reflects upon the choices he made that shaped his life and the people he loved and lost. He experiences various versions of his life, some of which end in tragedy, some in happiness, and some in nothingness. In the end, Nemo must choose which of these lives he wants to live, a decision that will shape both his own destiny and that of humanity.

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 a 2006 fantasy film directed by Tarsem Singh. It tells the story of a Hollywood stuntman (played by Lee Pace) who is hospitalized after a near-fatal accident. To pass the time while recovering, he tells a young girl (played by Catinca Untaru) a story about five mythical heroes. As the story progresses, the line between reality and fantasy begins to blur and the two characters find themselves on a journey together. With stunning visuals and an emotionally resonant story, The Fall is an exploration of love, loss, and imagination.

Blue Velvet (1986)

Blue Velvet
★★★★
★★★★
3.1 out of 4 stars

From David Lynch, starring Isabella Rossellini, Kyle MacLachlan, Dennis Hopper, Laura Dern
Rated R

Blue Velvet is a 1986 American neo-noir mystery film written and directed by David Lynch. The film tells the story of a young man named Jeffrey Beaumont, who returns to his small hometown of Lumberton after his father suffers a stroke. After finding a severed human ear in a field, Jeffrey and his girlfriend Sandy, investigate the mysterious circumstances surrounding its discovery. Their investigation leads them to the home of nightclub singer Dorothy Vallens, whom they discover is being terrorized by a psychopathic gangster named Frank Booth. As Jeffrey gets drawn further and further into the dark criminal underworld of Lumberton, he finds that not everything is as it seems. Blue Velvet is a psychological thriller that examines the darkness and violence that can lurk beneath the surface of small-town America.

 



Related Articles

Visitors also search for: Old Lifetime Movies About Kidnapping Movies About Personal Growth Movies About Snow Scary Movie Toy Movies About Strong Women Water Horror Movies Movies Like The Strange Thing About The Johnsons