Philosophically and aesthetically inspiring

by herbie_mac | created - 28 Dec 2014 | updated - 09 Aug 2017 | Public

Beauty is the splendor of truth. — Plato Existentialist questions distilled in poetic cinematography.

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1. The Seventh Seal (1957)

Not Rated | 96 min | Drama, Fantasy

A man seeks answers about life, death, and the existence of God as he plays chess against the Grim Reaper during the Black Plague.

Director: Ingmar Bergman | Stars: Max von Sydow, Gunnar Björnstrand, Bengt Ekerot, Nils Poppe

Votes: 143,669

2. 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)

G | 149 min | Adventure, Sci-Fi

82 Metascore

After discovering a mysterious artifact buried beneath the Lunar surface, mankind sets off on a quest to find its origins with help from intelligent supercomputer H.A.L. 9000.

Director: Stanley Kubrick | Stars: Keir Dullea, Gary Lockwood, William Sylvester, Daniel Richter

Votes: 543,625 | Gross: $56.95M

3. Waking Life (2001)

R | 99 min | Animation, Drama, Fantasy

82 Metascore

A man shuffles through a dream meeting various people and discussing the meanings and purposes of the universe.

Director: Richard Linklater | Stars: Ethan Hawke, Trevor Jack Brooks, Lorelei Linklater, Wiley Wiggins

Votes: 57,038 | Gross: $2.89M

4. Cloud Atlas (2012)

R | 172 min | Action, Drama, Mystery

55 Metascore

An exploration of how the actions of individual lives impact one another in the past, present and future, as one soul is shaped from a killer into a hero, and an act of kindness ripples across centuries to inspire a revolution.

Directors: Tom Tykwer, Lana Wachowski, Lilly Wachowski | Stars: Tom Hanks, Halle Berry, Hugh Grant, Hugo Weaving

Votes: 326,581 | Gross: $27.11M

5. A Serious Man (2009)

R | 106 min | Comedy, Drama

79 Metascore

Larry Gopnik, a Midwestern physics teacher, watches his life unravel over multiple sudden incidents. Though seeking meaning and answers amidst his turmoils, he seems to keep sinking.

Directors: Ethan Coen, Joel Coen | Stars: Michael Stuhlbarg, Richard Kind, Sari Lennick, Fred Melamed

Votes: 121,880 | Gross: $9.19M

6. Donnie Darko (2001)

R | 113 min | Drama, Sci-Fi, Thriller

88 Metascore

A troubled teenager is plagued by visions of a man in a large rabbit suit who manipulates him to commit a series of crimes, after he narrowly escapes a bizarre accident.

Director: Richard Kelly | Stars: Jake Gyllenhaal, Jena Malone, Mary McDonnell, Holmes Osborne

Votes: 698,306 | Gross: $1.48M

7. The Mirror (1975)

G | 107 min | Biography, Drama

A dying man in his forties remembers his past. His childhood, his mother, the war, personal moments and things that tell of the recent history of all the Russian nation.

Director: Andrei Tarkovsky | Stars: Margarita Terekhova, Filipp Yankovskiy, Ignat Daniltsev, Oleg Yankovskiy

Votes: 32,213

8. The Tree of Life (2011)

PG-13 | 139 min | Drama, Fantasy

85 Metascore

The story of a family in Waco, Texas in 1956. The eldest son witnesses the loss of innocence and struggles with his parents' conflicting teachings.

Director: Terrence Malick | Stars: Brad Pitt, Sean Penn, Jessica Chastain, Hunter McCracken

Votes: 156,333 | Gross: $13.30M

9. Symbol (2009)

Not Rated | 93 min | Comedy, Fantasy, Mystery

A man wakes up in a white room empty other than buttons on the walls, he must find out which button to push to get what he wants.

Director: Hitoshi Matsumoto | Stars: Hitoshi Matsumoto, David Quintero, Luis Accinelli, Lilian Tapia

Votes: 2,991

10. To the Wonder (2012)

R | 112 min | Drama, Romance

58 Metascore

After falling in love in Paris, Marina and Neil come to Oklahoma, where problems arise. Their church's Spanish-born pastor struggles with his faith, while Neil encounters a woman from his childhood.

Director: Terrence Malick | Stars: Ben Affleck, Olga Kurylenko, Javier Bardem, Rachel McAdams

Votes: 25,333 | Gross: $0.59M

11. Upstream Color (2013)

Not Rated | 96 min | Drama, Sci-Fi

81 Metascore

A man and woman are drawn together, entangled in the life cycle of an ageless organism. Identity becomes an illusion as they struggle to assemble the loose fragments of wrecked lives.

Director: Shane Carruth | Stars: Amy Seimetz, Frank Mosley, Shane Carruth, Andrew Sensenig

Votes: 28,495 | Gross: $0.44M

12. The Great Beauty (2013)

Not Rated | 141 min | Drama

86 Metascore

Jep Gambardella has seduced his way through the lavish nightlife of Rome for decades, but after his 65th birthday and a shock from the past, Jep looks past the nightclubs and parties to find a timeless landscape of absurd, exquisite beauty.

Director: Paolo Sorrentino | Stars: Toni Servillo, Carlo Verdone, Sabrina Ferilli, Carlo Buccirosso

Votes: 72,349 | Gross: $2.85M

13. Thirteen Conversations About One Thing (2001)

R | 104 min | Drama

74 Metascore

In New York City, the lives of a lawyer, an actuary, a house-cleaner, a professor and the people around them intersect as they ponder order and happiness in the face of life's cold unpredictability.

Director: Jill Sprecher | Stars: Alan Arkin, John Turturro, Matthew McConaughey, David Connolly

Votes: 9,190 | Gross: $3.29M

14. Yi Yi (2000)

Not Rated | 173 min | Drama, Romance

93 Metascore

Each member of a middle class Taipei family seeks to reconcile past and present relationships within their daily lives.

Director: Edward Yang | Stars: Nien-Jen Wu, Elaine Jin, Issei Ogata, Kelly Lee

Votes: 17,108 | Gross: $1.14M

15. The Sacrifice (1986)

PG | 149 min | Drama

At the dawn of World War III, a man searches for a way to restore peace to the world and finds he must give something in return.

Director: Andrei Tarkovsky | Stars: Erland Josephson, Susan Fleetwood, Allan Edwall, Guðrún Gísladóttir

Votes: 20,200 | Gross: $0.30M

16. 2046 (2004)

R | 129 min | Drama, Romance, Sci-Fi

78 Metascore

Several women enter a science fiction author's life over the course of a few years, after the author has lost the woman he considers his one true love.

Director: Kar-Wai Wong | Stars: Tony Chiu-Wai Leung, Ziyi Zhang, Faye Wong, Li Gong

Votes: 47,046 | Gross: $0.26M

17. La Dolce Vita (1960)

Not Rated | 174 min | Comedy, Drama

93 Metascore

A series of stories following a week in the life of a philandering paparazzo journalist living in Rome.

Director: Federico Fellini | Stars: Marcello Mastroianni, Anita Ekberg, Anouk Aimée, Yvonne Furneaux

Votes: 59,045 | Gross: $19.52M

18. Noi the Albino (2003)

PG-13 | 93 min | Drama

68 Metascore

Is he the village idiot or a genius in disguise? 17 year old Noi drifts through life on a remote fjord in the north of Iceland. In winter, the fjord is cut off from the outside world, ... See full summary »

Director: Dagur Kári | Stars: Tómas Lemarquis, Þröstur Leó Gunnarsson, Elín Hansdóttir, Anna Friðriksdóttir

Votes: 8,676 | Gross: $0.06M

19. Beyond the Clouds (1995)

Not Rated | 110 min | Drama, Romance

66 Metascore

Made of four short tales, linked by a story filmed by Wim Wenders. Taking place in Ferrara, Portofino, Aix en Provence and Paris, each story, which always a woman as the crux of the story, ... See full summary »

Directors: Michelangelo Antonioni, Wim Wenders | Stars: Fanny Ardant, Chiara Caselli, Irène Jacob, John Malkovich

Votes: 5,100 | Gross: $0.03M

20. Identification of a Woman (1982)

Not Rated | 130 min | Drama, Romance

The movie director Niccolo has just been left by his wife. This gives him the idea of making a movie about women's relationships. He starts to search for a woman who can play the leading ... See full summary »

Director: Michelangelo Antonioni | Stars: Tomas Milian, Daniela Silverio, Christine Boisson, Lara Wendel

Votes: 2,373

21. Wings of Desire (1987)

PG-13 | 128 min | Drama, Fantasy, Romance

79 Metascore

An angel tires of overseeing human activity and wishes to become human when he falls in love with a mortal.

Director: Wim Wenders | Stars: Bruno Ganz, Solveig Dommartin, Otto Sander, Curt Bois

Votes: 57,943 | Gross: $3.21M

22. Melancholia (2011)

R | 135 min | Drama, Sci-Fi

80 Metascore

Two sisters find their already strained relationship challenged as a mysterious new planet threatens to collide with Earth.

Director: Lars von Trier | Stars: Kirsten Dunst, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Kiefer Sutherland, Alexander Skarsgård

Votes: 153,511 | Gross: $3.03M

23. Love and Death (1975)

PG | 85 min | Comedy, War

89 Metascore

In czarist Russia, a neurotic soldier and his distant cousin formulate a plot to assassinate Napoleon.

Director: Woody Allen | Stars: Woody Allen, Diane Keaton, Georges Adet, Frank Adu

Votes: 32,899

24. Le Havre (2011)

Not Rated | 93 min | Comedy, Drama

82 Metascore

When an African boy arrives by cargo ship in the port city of Le Havre, an aging shoe shiner takes pity on the child and welcomes him into his home.

Director: Aki Kaurismäki | Stars: André Wilms, Blondin Miguel, Jean-Pierre Darroussin, Kati Outinen

Votes: 18,498 | Gross: $0.61M

26. Ship of Theseus (2012)

Not Rated | 140 min | Drama

The film explores questions of identity, justice, beauty, meaning and death through an experimental photographer, an ailing monk and a young stockbroker.

Director: Anand Gandhi | Stars: Aida Elkashef, Yogesh Shah, Faraz Khan, Hannan Youssef

Votes: 5,639

27. The Temptation of St. Tony (2009)

114 min | Drama, Fantasy, Mystery

A mid-level manager who develops an aversion to being "good" finds himself confronting the mysteries of middle-age and morality as he loses grasp of what was once his quiet life.

Director: Veiko Õunpuu | Stars: Taavi Eelmaa, Ravshana Kurkova, Tiina Tauraite, Sten Ljunggren

Votes: 1,125 | Gross: $0.00M

28. You, the Living (2007)

Not Rated | 95 min | Comedy, Drama, Music

81 Metascore

You, the Living is a film about humankind, its greatness and its baseness, joy and sorrow, its self-confidence and anxiety, its desire to love and be loved.

Director: Roy Andersson | Stars: Elisabeth Helander, Jörgen Nohall, Jan Wikbladh, Björn Englund

Votes: 12,785 | Gross: $0.02M

29. The Wall (2012)

Not Rated | 108 min | Drama, Fantasy, Mystery

67 Metascore

A woman inexplicably finds herself cut off from all human contact when an invisible, unyielding wall suddenly surrounds the countryside. Accompanied by her loyal dog Lynx, she becomes ... See full summary »

Director: Julian Pölsler | Stars: Martina Gedeck, Luchs, Karlheinz Hackl, Ulrike Beimpold

Votes: 5,485 | Gross: $0.04M

30. Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives (2010)

Not Rated | 114 min | Drama, Fantasy

87 Metascore

Dying of kidney disease, a man spends his last, somber days with family, including the ghost of his wife and a forest spirit who used to be his son, on a rural northern Thailand farm.

Director: Apichatpong Weerasethakul | Stars: Thanapat Saisaymar, Jenjira Pongpas, Sakda Kaewbuadee, Natthakarn Aphaiwonk

Votes: 11,734 | Gross: $0.18M

31. Le Quattro Volte (2010)

Not Rated | 88 min | Drama

80 Metascore

An old shepherd lives his last days in a quiet medieval village perched high on the hills of Calabria, at the southernmost tip of Italy. He herds goats under skies that most villagers have ... See full summary »

Director: Michelangelo Frammartino | Stars: Giuseppe Fuda, Bruno Timpano, Nazareno Timpano, Artemio Vallone

Votes: 3,367 | Gross: $0.15M

32. My Dinner with Andre (1981)

PG | 110 min | Biography, Comedy, Drama

Two old friends meet for dinner; as one tells anecdotes detailing his experiences, the other notices their differing worldviews.

Director: Louis Malle | Stars: Andre Gregory, Wallace Shawn, Jean Lenauer, Roy Butler

Votes: 15,514 | Gross: $5.25M

33. Mindwalk (1990)

PG | 112 min | Drama

A US politician visits his poet friend in Mont. St. Michael, France. While walking through the medieval island discussing their philosophies of life they happen upon Sonja, a scientist in ... See full summary »

Director: Bernt Amadeus Capra | Stars: Liv Ullmann, Sam Waterston, John Heard, Ione Skye

Votes: 2,662 | Gross: $0.77M

34. The Zero Theorem (2013)

R | 107 min | Comedy, Drama, Fantasy

50 Metascore

A hugely talented but socially isolated computer operator is tasked by Management to prove the Zero Theorem: that the universe ends as nothing, rendering life meaningless. But meaning is what he already craves.

Director: Terry Gilliam | Stars: Christoph Waltz, Lucas Hedges, Mélanie Thierry, David Thewlis

Votes: 42,097 | Gross: $0.22M

35. Goodbye to Language (2014)

Not Rated | 70 min | Drama, Fantasy

75 Metascore

A silent, surreal parallel between a couple and a dog.

Director: Jean-Luc Godard | Stars: Héloïse Godet, Kamel Abdelli, Richard Chevallier, Zoé Bruneau

Votes: 4,911

36. The Family Friend (2006)

102 min | Drama

Geremia, an aging tailor/money lender, is a repulsive, mean, stingy man who lives alone in his shabby house with his scornful, bedridden mother. He has a morbid, obsessive relationship with... See full summary »

Director: Paolo Sorrentino | Stars: Giacomo Rizzo, Laura Chiatti, Gigi Angelillo, Marco Giallini

Votes: 3,009

37. Light After Darkness (2012)

Not Rated | 115 min | Drama

69 Metascore

Juan and his urban family live in the Mexican countryside, where they enjoy and suffer a world apart. And nobody knows if these two worlds are complementary or if they strive to eliminate one another.

Director: Carlos Reygadas | Stars: Nathalia Acevedo, Rut Reygadas, Adolfo Jiménez Castro, Mitsy Ferrand

Votes: 4,479 | Gross: $0.04M

38. Film socialisme (2010)

Not Rated | 102 min | Drama

64 Metascore

The passengers on a Mediterranean cruise enjoy their luxuries as a small family struggles with overbearing media attention.

Director: Jean-Luc Godard | Stars: Jean-Marc Stehlé, Agatha Couture, Mathias Domahidy, Quentin Grosset

Votes: 2,312 | Gross: $0.03M

39. It's Such a Beautiful Day (2012)

Not Rated | 62 min | Animation, Comedy, Drama

90 Metascore

Bill struggles to put together his shattered psyche, in this new feature film version of Don Hertzfeldt's animated short film trilogy.

Director: Don Hertzfeldt

Votes: 9,108

40. Frequencies (2013)

Not Rated | 105 min | Mystery, Romance, Sci-Fi

In an alternate reality, children learn how lucky they will be (their "frequency"), knowledge which shapes their destiny. The unluckiest boy must parse the mysteries of free will in order to pursue his forbidden love of the luckiest girl.

Director: Darren Paul Fisher | Stars: Daniel Fraser, Eleanor Wyld, Owen Pugh, Dylan Llewellyn

Votes: 12,871

41. Knight of Cups (2015)

R | 118 min | Drama, Romance

53 Metascore

A writer indulging in all that Los Angeles and Las Vegas has to offer undertakes a search for love and self via a series of adventures with six different women.

Director: Terrence Malick | Stars: Christian Bale, Cate Blanchett, Natalie Portman, Brian Dennehy

Votes: 22,260 | Gross: $0.56M

42. The Brand New Testament (2015)

Not Rated | 114 min | Comedy, Fantasy

70 Metascore

Did you know that God is alive and lives in Brussels with his daughter?

Director: Jaco Van Dormael | Stars: Pili Groyne, Benoît Poelvoorde, Catherine Deneuve, François Damiens

Votes: 25,834 | Gross: $0.09M

43. Cemetery of Splendor (2015)

Unrated | 122 min | Drama, Fantasy

A group of soldiers in a small town on the Mekong River in northern Thailand are struck with a bizarre sleeping illness.

Director: Apichatpong Weerasethakul | Stars: Jenjira Pongpas, Banlop Lomnoi, Jarinpattra Rueangram, Petcharat Chaiburi

Votes: 3,617 | Gross: $0.05M

44. The Wind Will Carry Us (1999)

Not Rated | 118 min | Drama

86 Metascore

Irreverent city engineer Behzad comes to a rural village in Iran to keep vigil for a dying relative. In the meanwhile the film follows his efforts to fit in with the local community and how he changes his own attitudes as a result.

Director: Abbas Kiarostami | Stars: Behzad Dorani, Noghre Asadi, Roushan Karam Elmi, Bahman Ghobadi

Votes: 7,223 | Gross: $0.21M

45. In Praise of Love (2001)

PG | 97 min | Drama

62 Metascore

An author works on a project on the subject of love, and, in the process, crosses paths with a former love in his life.

Director: Jean-Luc Godard | Stars: Bruno Putzulu, Cécile Camp, Jean Davy, Françoise Verny

Votes: 2,549 | Gross: $0.25M

46. The Face of Another (1966)

Not Rated | 124 min | Drama, Sci-Fi

A businessman with a disfigured face obtains a lifelike mask from his doctor, but the mask starts altering his personality.

Director: Hiroshi Teshigahara | Stars: Tatsuya Nakadai, Mikijirô Hira, Kyôko Kishida, Miki Irie

Votes: 6,049

47. The Salt of the Earth (2014)

PG-13 | 110 min | Documentary, Biography, History

83 Metascore

The life and work of photographer Sebastião Salgado, who has spent forty years documenting deprived societies in hidden corners of the world.

Directors: Juliano Ribeiro Salgado, Wim Wenders | Stars: Sebastião Salgado, Wim Wenders, Lélia Wanick Salgado, Juliano Ribeiro Salgado

Votes: 17,275 | Gross: $1.34M

48. Free Range/Ballad on Approving of the World (2013)

104 min | Drama

The story of a promising, young man with exciting career opportunities and looming marital bliss.

Director: Veiko Õunpuu | Stars: Lauri Lagle, Jaanika Arum, Laura Peterson, Peeter Volkonski

Votes: 343



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