As demonstrated throughout this list, there are many elements that define a film as “beautiful”. Often, these elements coexist within the work evoking an emotional reaction from the viewer. In these films, our world is redefined, examined and presented to us as a challenge to understand new levels of our existence. All of these movies are available on Netflix Instant, so hurry while they are still available!
12. Cry Baby (1990) (Watch on Netflix)
The Plot: John Waters satirical musical masterpiece. Set in the 1950’s, the film follows Johnny Depp’s character of a rebellious teen.
Why It’s Beautiful: Keeping in tradition with Waters previous films, “Cry Baby” is weird, satirical, and very funny. It looks and feels like a cartoon with its exaggerated characters, costumes and makeup. With outrageously wonderful performances from Johnny Depp, Traci Lords, Ricki Lake, Iggy Pop and many others, this film looks like you are watching a comic book coming to life.
11. Pi (1998) (Watch on Netflix)
The Plot: An incredible debut film from writer/director Darren Aronofsky. The film’s protagonist, genius Max Cohen, is a neurotic mathematician obsessed with patterns.
Why It’s Beautiful: Filmed in a way that looks and feels as paranoid as Max, “Pi” is a surrealist masterpiece. Shot in gritty black and white focusing on strange imagery and camera angles, the film’s brilliance is in it’s many little details. Setting the mood for Aronofsky’s following films, “Pi” is weird and unsettling but totally original.
10. Hard Eight (1996) (Watch on Netflix)
The Plot: A charming portrayal of Las Vegas and its inhabitants.
Why It’s Beautiful: Paul Thomas Anderson has 3 movies on Netflix Instant: “Hard Eight”, “Punch Drunk Love” and “There Will Be Blood“. Being one of the greatest contemporary filmmakers of our time, it is highly recommended that all three of his films be watched. P.T. Anderson’s debut film “Hard Eight” is highly acclaimed and paved the way for the rest of his brilliant films. Anderson mastered the long, steady slow shot and complicated character development in this great first film.
9. Battle Royale (2000) (Watch on Netflix)
The Plot: In a government experiment, selected school children are brought to an island and forced to fight to their death.
Why It’s Beautiful: The epitome of extreme Japanese violence, Battle Royale is a blood spewing, limbs blown, ultra gore extravaganza. The extreme nature of the movie allows its hyper-violence to be tolerated by the viewer. As a result, the film is drenched in bright red. In contrast, the island where the movie is set is a lush, green jungle. The red and green colors are just as exaggerated as the ultra violence.
Spectacular lighting makes every scene wonderfully detailed and defined. See it before the American remake (release date undetermined) which we all know will not even come close to being as good as the original.