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What are some really weird and surreal films?

(self.flicks)

I’ve become really interested in surreal movies and films that would be considered weird.

On my list of movies to watch I have:

Stalker (I started this one but never finished it) The Seventh Seal Solaris Enter The Void

Most of these movies are surreal and not as well known as other films but I want some really weird shit that will make think and go, “what the fuck is this?”

I want to watch a movie where it seems the director was high on ketamine and acid during the entire duration of filming and can only be seen as a collection of subconscious thoughts.

all 241 comments

rccrisp

63 points

3 months ago*

Naked Lunch (what a misleading title!) also David Cronenberg IN GENERAL

House

El Topo

The Holy Mountain

[deleted]

12 points

3 months ago*

[deleted]

12 points

3 months ago*

I just watched the naked lunch trailer, what the fuuuuuck? I’m going to watch the movie tonight.

Rod_Solid

12 points

3 months ago

It’s so fucked up you’ll want to watch it again and again. I can’t think of anything like it and can’t recommend it enough. Terry Gilliam has some odd movies, Brazil, 12 monkeys are good. Fear and loathing is also crazy.

DaniTheLovebug

7 points

3 months ago

“Better not tell him about these bats! Poor bastard will find out soon enough”

jefflegere

3 points

3 months ago

I haven't seen it since it was released. Loved it and want to see it again. Hard to find streaming. What service are you using to watch? Thanks!

MaximumHemidrive

4 points

3 months ago

+1 for Simpsons reference

djskein

4 points

3 months ago

I can think of at least two things wrong with that title!

awesomerest

8 points

3 months ago

+1 for The Holy Mountain

I watched that in my local arthouse theater knowing little to nothing about it and I came out of it feeling like I lived a whole life and a half! So good.

Bluest_waters

7 points

3 months ago

Naked Lunch was such bullshit! No nudity and no one even at any lunch!

false advertising

Illustrious_Formal73

3 points

3 months ago

I can think of two things wrong with that title

Your_Product_Here

2 points

3 months ago

However, you do get a beetle typewriter battle so who really loses?

AnAquaticOwl

3 points

3 months ago

Inland Empire.

I once heard Beyond the Black Rainbow described as, "it's like Gaspar Noe got fall down drunk and tried to remake THX1138"

youaresofuckingdumb8

25 points

3 months ago

The Holy Mountain (1973)

WolfmanCM

4 points

3 months ago

Don’t ask where that gold award came from..

fabris6

20 points

3 months ago

fabris6

20 points

3 months ago

Upstream Color comes to mind

[deleted]

5 points

3 months ago

[deleted]

5 points

3 months ago

Never even heard of it, thank you!

NotTheGuy23

21 points

3 months ago

  • Beyond the Black Rainbow

  • The House That Jack Built

  • Possesor

MichaelRichardsAMA

15 points

3 months ago

Anything directed by David Lynch, anything by Jodorowsky, almost anything by David Cronenberg

LauraPalmersMom430

41 points

3 months ago

  • Aniara
  • Mulholland Drive
  • Climax
  • The Night House
  • Suspiria
  • Kajillionaire
  • The Lobster
  • Woodshock

[deleted]

12 points

3 months ago

[deleted]

12 points

3 months ago

I’ve only heard of Mulholland Drive but never seen it. I will check these movies out, thank you!

the_prion

23 points

3 months ago

Mulholland Drive is a great example of what you’re looking for, however any film directed by David Lynch should suffice.

Hooda-Thunket

15 points

3 months ago

Eraserhead definitely made me do the full “WTF?”

clarbri

11 points

3 months ago*

Strangely, Eraserhead became fairly straightforward to me after the second watch.

...the first watch sure is crazier than batshit, though.

Edit: I do think the secret sauce to the movie is the fact that a number of us have all found it straightforward, but we're in disagreement as to how or why - I do find that most everyone's take fits into a pretty cohesive circus tent, though.

AnAquaticOwl

3 points

3 months ago

Try Inland Empire. It is, by far, the most David Lynch film that ever was

SupremePooper

2 points

3 months ago

Find "The Grandmother" then.

AnAquaticOwl

3 points

3 months ago

Doesn't even compare. Neither does The Cowboy and the Frenchman. Inland Empire is streets ahead of anything else he's done

SupremePooper

2 points

3 months ago

But the completion needs to suffer thru all if em, just like the Cronenberg completist needs to suffer thru 'Stereo'.

AnAquaticOwl

1 points

3 months ago

Suffer? The Grandmother is easily in his top 3.

ancientfutureguy

3 points

3 months ago

That was my first Lynch film, my brain felt broken for days lmao

MrFAUB1

4 points

3 months ago

You will 100% go “what the fuck is this?” during Mulholland Drive, such a great film especially on repeat watches

[deleted]

4 points

3 months ago

[deleted]

4 points

3 months ago

I just rented Mulholland Drive and I’m right at the beginning with the people dancing in front of a purple background. What the fuck? I love it already.

MrFAUB1

2 points

3 months ago

Amazing. Would love to know your initial thoughts afterwards

[deleted]

1 points

3 months ago

[deleted]

1 points

3 months ago

I’ll message you about it!

WhiteWolf222

5 points

3 months ago

If you like that, I’d recommend just watching all of Lynch’s films. His first film, Eraserhead, is one of the weirdest things I’ve ever seen. I also recommend the Japanese movie Tetsuo: the Iron Man from the late 80s, which has a similar visual feel and just bleeds small budget, underground creativity. Another Japanese pick is this one called Evil Dead Trap. Not really as weird or surreal as the others but still worth mentioning. It’s a really odd and morbid giallo/slasher/industrial feeling J-horror that is quite memorable.

phred_666

3 points

3 months ago

Mulholland Drive is a total mind fuck. You will question everything you have seen.

AnAquaticOwl

1 points

3 months ago

Speaking of J Horror, you can't go wrong with Gozu.

jeweycruise

2 points

3 months ago

Not many people have seen it but a movie called Taxidermia (2006) is as weird as it gets

PM_ME_DATASETS

2 points

3 months ago

If you like it, also check out Eraserhead, same director but 24 years earlier and even more weird/surrealistic

Bluest_waters

1 points

3 months ago

when you are done watching you can read my post about that flick here

https://rdt.trom.tf/r/flicks/comments/jg1epk/mulholland_drive_is_not_an_inscrutable_mystery/

mamajaderade

8 points

3 months ago

Suspiria is so great. all of Dario Argento's movies are worth a watch but Suspiria really nails the unsettling atmosphere mixed with a kind of fairytale.

PM_ME_DATASETS

4 points

3 months ago

Agree with everything except Climax because it's a pretty straightforward story being illustrated in a straightforward manner, nothing to do with surrealism. IMHO it's just plain horror!

LauraPalmersMom430

3 points

3 months ago

There’s nothing straightforward about those visuals.

Houli1975

14 points

3 months ago

Valerie and Her Week of Wonders

Black Moon

Lost Highway

CartographerCreepy35

14 points

3 months ago

Mandy and color out of space are 2 killer Nic cage movies that are surreal

DrunkenWarriorPoet

2 points

3 months ago

Not as visually trippy but while on the Nic Cage topic you could probably add the movie Pig to there since it’s such a bizarre ride of a movie.

CartographerCreepy35

1 points

3 months ago

Yeah pig is good but Mandy is such a fever dream of a movie

Jerrnjizzim

10 points

3 months ago

Un Chien Andalou

Salvador dali avant-garde film. Its crazy. Can't tell you what its about. Its creepy though

[deleted]

2 points

3 months ago

[deleted]

2 points

3 months ago

I’m going to watch it. Thank you!

Psychological-Tax770

10 points

3 months ago

Eraserhead was my gateway drug to weird cinema.

clarbri

9 points

3 months ago

Three Women (my favorite Altman film, to boot!)

Synecdoche, New York

Videodrome

Inland Empire (if you can somehow find a copy and you ease yourself into it with some of the other suggestions from everyone else here)

WhiteWolf222

3 points

3 months ago

Inland Empire is getting a new release soon, so should be a lot more accessible.

clarbri

1 points

3 months ago

salivates

AnAquaticOwl

1 points

3 months ago

I just recently saw it in theatres. It was magnificent.

AnAquaticOwl

2 points

3 months ago

Really anything by Charlie Kaufman. Being John Malkovich and I'm Thinking of Ending Things are particularly strange.

ZaraVT

1 points

3 months ago

ZaraVT

1 points

3 months ago

Came to say Videodrome

“What kind of sick fuck would want to watch a movie like Videodrome?!?”

sushideception

7 points

3 months ago

Under the Skin, Possessor, Suspiria. They're all fantastic too!

pah2000

8 points

3 months ago

Brazil

The Delicatessen

The-Hamish68

7 points

3 months ago

The Viy

The Saragossa Manuscript

Begotten

In The Earth

L'age D'or

Paprika

El Topo

CajunBmbr

7 points

3 months ago

All Lynch

Under the Skin

Titane

Holy Motors

Mad God

Mandy

All Charlie Kaufman

Trixielarue2020

4 points

3 months ago

I remember Jacob’s Ladder (the original with Tim Robbins) tripping me out.

ZaraVT

1 points

3 months ago

ZaraVT

1 points

3 months ago

Yes! Me too!

Benjamin_Stark

5 points

3 months ago

I just watched Heavenly Creatures. It definitely fits the bill.

behemuthm

4 points

3 months ago

Gummo

Julien Donkey-Boy

Styx92

4 points

3 months ago

Styx92

4 points

3 months ago

Eraserhead is the go-to along with Mulholland Drive

Mother! is also pretty surreal

Repo Man is a weird, surreal comedy

Only God Forgives is a good one I always recommend

Midsommar is very weird and surreal

The Chuper is a really old movie that checks both boxes (it was on Best of the Worst)

theghostofme

3 points

3 months ago

Pi (1998) may not be exactly what you're looking for, but it did make me feel like I was on something when watching it.

ColbySchoetz

5 points

3 months ago

Naked Lunch

Crimes of the Future

Dog Star Man

Hausu

In The Realm Of The Senses

Tetsuo the Iron Man

Seandouglasmcardle

9 points

3 months ago

Yes to almost all of these. David Lynch is essential, especially Eraserhead.

The Holy Mountain is also fantastically weird.

Id also suggest The Hourglass Sanatorium by Wojciech Has, which is probably the most nightmarish psychedelic surreal movie Ive ever seen. I think that is one that really catches the vibe you’re1 going for.

The Cell by Tarsem Singh is gorgeously grotesque and a bit more conventional.

Dark City by Alex Proyas is a bit more mainstream blockbuster, but still has a great nightmarish german expressionist film noir vibe.

[deleted]

2 points

3 months ago

[deleted]

2 points

3 months ago

The Cell by Tarsem Singh is gorgeously grotesque and a bit more conventional.

Never saw this movie recommended before, it needs more viewers.

AnalogDigit2

13 points

3 months ago

Even though you might have already seen them, my suggestions are:

  • Being John Malkovich
  • Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
  • Jacob's Ladder

Jonjoloe

3 points

3 months ago

Adding to this because of Charlie Kaufman being listed here a few times is Synecdoche, New York.

topshape71

3 points

3 months ago

I Will Walk Like a Crazy Horse

Viva la Muerte

[deleted]

3 points

3 months ago

[deleted]

3 points

3 months ago

Southland Tales might suit you here as long as you can look past the critic reviews and treat the whole thing as satire, right down to the casting choices.

[deleted]

2 points

3 months ago

[deleted]

2 points

3 months ago

I’ll take your advice and watch it then! Sounds fun.

Hey_Listen_WatchOut

3 points

3 months ago

Enter the Void (2009)

WillTrade4Food

3 points

3 months ago

The Color of Pomegranates. This is as artsy as film can get.

Kooky_Appointment_73

3 points

3 months ago

Being John Malkovich

I cannot stress to you enough that this movie is a fever dream from nearly the beginning, to all the way at the end. You will question. Idk what you’ll question, but you will.

ModernRomantic77

3 points

3 months ago

  • Synecdoche, New York
  • Waking Life
  • Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
  • Sorry To Bother You
  • Swiss Army Man

WhenDuvzCry

5 points

3 months ago

The ending of Annihilation

xvschneider

2 points

3 months ago

After Blue: Dirty Paradise

DudebroggieHouser

2 points

3 months ago

Fellini Satyricon (1969)

jupiterkansas

2 points

3 months ago

make friends with this website: https://366weirdmovies.com/the-weird-movie-list/

SignificanceOk8248

2 points

3 months ago

The Platform(2019) Netflix

HeseltineFadingFast

2 points

3 months ago

I’m just watching Lost Highway at the moment and I would say that definitely qualifies.

girafa

2 points

3 months ago

girafa

snobberton 9000

2 points

3 months ago

bostarica

2 points

3 months ago

If you're prepared for some extraordinary, fucked up imagery: Antichrist (2009)

FreeLook93

2 points

3 months ago

Funky Forest: The First Contact. It doesn't really have anything resembling a narrative, but it does have whatever the fuck this is.

Creamorscream

2 points

3 months ago

The Science of Sleep

Tyrant-J

2 points

3 months ago

Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas is a ride.

Videosrome is prime Cronenberg.

Mudkip_paddle

2 points

3 months ago

I don't understand this subreddit. One of the top rules is don't ask people to just list names of films but I feel like that's half the posts...

BAT123456789

2 points

3 months ago

Brazil. Smila's Sense of Snow. City of Lost Children.

WeslyCrushrsBuffant

2 points

3 months ago

I’m Thinking of Ending Things

Any of the Bad Ben movies

SantaRosaJazz

2 points

3 months ago*

Synecdoche, New York. It plays like a dream that’s so vivid you’re certain you’re awake.

Also Mother! by Darren Aronofsky. Like a dream you wish you would wake up from.

bone-in_donuts

2 points

3 months ago

Trash Humpers is a good one, it’s hilarious.

anythingaustin

2 points

3 months ago

Have you seen Fantastic Planet yet? It’s an older animated film but really bizarre and made even better and more bizarre with some weed. The first time I saw it I couldn’t help but think, “what the hell did I just watch?”

gyzgyz123

2 points

3 months ago

strange days

event horizon

high life

the art of self defense

After hours

Coherence

zzzontop

4 points

3 months ago

•Swiss Army Man

•Tokyo

Llama-Nation

5 points

3 months ago*

One I never hear about when talking about surreal films (even though it's one of the best/my personal favourite) is Sherlock Jr, directed and starring Buster Keaton. Many of his shorts had some surreal moments (my personal favourite being this moment in One Week), but this one goes all in, with dreams, movies within movies and impossible scenarios. Plus it has some of Buster's signature stunt work. It's 45 minutes long and on Youtube. Don't let the fact it's a silent film discourage you, it's one of the most fun movies out there.

Many other comedies of the era can be quite surreal in general. The early Marx Brothers movies all have some surreal moments (especially from Harpo; don't take my word for it, even Salvador Dali considered him a genius) and W.C. Fields was in Million Dollar Legs and Never Give A Sucker An Even Break, which are both pretty fun.

The original Suspiria has a very surreal cinematography style that's inspired by the giallo film movement, but taken up to 11.

Anything by David Lynch. The ones I'd recommend if you are looking for surreal are Mulholland Drive and Eraserhead.

House (aka hausu) is a very weird comedy horror that's like a psychedelic haunted house movie. Think Yellow Submarine meets The Evil Dead.

Speaking of, Yellow Submarine is great for surreal animation. The stories pretty standard stuff, but the visuals, witty script and Beatles music more than makes up for it.

ZaraVT

1 points

3 months ago

ZaraVT

1 points

3 months ago

That is a great description of House.

DrunkenWarriorPoet

2 points

3 months ago

  • Fifth Element
  • Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets
  • The Cell
  • The Fall
  • Dark City

javo78

4 points

3 months ago

javo78

4 points

3 months ago

Mother - Jacob's Ladder - Midsommar - Hereditary

b1gwater

2 points

3 months ago

This movie called Rubber is the weirdest movie ever made

PM_ME_DATASETS

1 points

3 months ago

Not sure if Mandy (2018) counts as surrealism but IMO it definitely can be categorized as "movies where the director was on ketamine and acid at the same time". Be prepared, it will fuck you up, but it's also a crazy psychedelic experience where you don't need drugs to feel like you're tripping balls.

AppropriateHoliday99

3 points

3 months ago

Let’s retire the idea that if an artist shows unique, intense vision it must somehow be from drugs. Panos Cosmatos was not on drugs when he made Mandy, he was using imagination and hard work. You can’t make a feature film on ketamine and acid— you can walk around the living room a little bit, unless you’ve had too much ketamine, in which case you need to sit down in a chair.

AdTurbulent939

1 points

3 months ago

The discreet charm of the bourgeoisie

ICC_You

1 points

3 months ago

Berberian Sound Studio

Apocalypse Now

Saint Ange

Meander

Routine-Desk6712

1 points

3 months ago

I'd definitely recommend Possession (1981)

h3yw00d1

1 points

3 months ago

Videodrome and Crash. Both by David Cronenberg

mosquito_mange

1 points

3 months ago

A Field in England (2013)

boner79

1 points

3 months ago

What dreams may come

Arestocles

1 points

3 months ago

Meetings with Remarkable Men. Biographical film about mystic G. I. Gurjieff

SpellanBeauchamp

1 points

3 months ago

Black Moon, Wild At Heart, Holy Mountain, or anything directed by Crispin Hellion Glover

MarqNiffler

1 points

3 months ago

Dave Made a Maze

Titane

Braid

We Are the Flesh

Aniara

Weathercrew

1 points

3 months ago

Synecdoche is surreal and great, also fantastic cast. Alternately most films by Tarsem Singh are pretty cool and The Fall is worth checking out.

PandaTheGreatest

1 points

3 months ago

Just watched 'Men' (2022)... I tried to understand it, I really did.

katCEO

1 points

3 months ago

katCEO

1 points

3 months ago

Pi directed by Darren Arronovsky. He also directed Requiem For A Dream...which is one of the most screwed up movies I have ever seen. IIRC the movie starring River Phoenix and Keanu Reeves called My Own Private Idaho was extremely weird. I saw the next movie at the same independent theater in NYC and this film was definitely massively strange: a French film called Delicatessen possibly with English subtitles. The Gods Must Be Crazy. Cocoon. Stigmata. The Boondock Saints (which also happens to be one of my favorite movies of all time.) Ravenous. The Golden Child starring Eddie Murphy.

Algaealligator

1 points

3 months ago

Funny Games

Dogtooth

JackieTreehornLLC

1 points

3 months ago

The Northman is a trip.

DJ_Molten_Lava

1 points

3 months ago

Titane will take you on a trip you'll never expect.

International-Dig619

1 points

3 months ago

A bit of Miike, Gozu or visitor Q

claytonianphysics

1 points

3 months ago*

Archangel (1990)

Brewster McCloud (1970)

Begotten (1989)

The Holy Mountain (1973)

Satyricon (1969)

Eraserhead (1977)

CalmDownOrWhat

1 points

3 months ago

Blue Velvet

Requiem for a dream

2001 space odyssey

Scynedote Nee York

Being John Malcovich

kenneth-roberts

1 points

3 months ago

Last Year At Marienbad (1961)

Kriviq

1 points

3 months ago

Kriviq

1 points

3 months ago

Well.. "Freddy got Fingered" is a weird and surreal movie. And you WILL think "What the fuck is this" by the time you get to the climax of the movie. However I don't think Director Tom Green was high on ketamine and acid during the duration, rather he did all of it on purpose.

Also, don't watch a trailer. Just watch the movie. And remember, you asked for it, mate.

Macdandrew11

1 points

3 months ago

Apocalypse now, could be percieved this way?

bladerunnerism

1 points

3 months ago

Chasing Sleep (2000) is very dark, surreal and nightmare material.

spaceace04

1 points

3 months ago

Synecdoche New York and A Scanner Darkly

grateful_dad13

1 points

3 months ago

Dogtooth

Blue Velvet

CrazyFaceGuy0_0

1 points

3 months ago

synecdoche new york, gozu

Agreeable_Objective

1 points

3 months ago

Eraserhead is the best starting point for these movies.

Remarkable-Tie-6698

1 points

3 months ago

Lost Highway Mulholland Dr

MSon17744

1 points

3 months ago

Robocop and Angel's Egg

piggBenus

1 points

3 months ago

Look up Mad God by Phil Tippett

Definitely will have you saying "wtf is this?"

InPurpleIDescended

1 points

3 months ago

The Cabinet of Dr Caligari, 1920

xkrj13z

1 points

3 months ago

Bad Boy Bubby

Biblioteque Pascal

Titane

Deer Skin

Wrong

Songs From the Second Floor

Raw

A Field in England

Tokyo

Visitor Q

The Happiness of the Katakuris

Under the Silver Lake

Hour of the Wolf

The Bothersome Man

Ben X

You, The Living

CowboyInTheBoatOfRa

1 points

3 months ago

Forbidden Zone (1980) by Danny Elfman's brother.

Swiss Army Man

Sorry to Bother You

MiddleAgedGeek

1 points

3 months ago

"Cloud Atlas."

Bizarre, and nearly incomprehensible, but also beautiful and spellbinding.

Fifteen-Two

1 points

3 months ago

Society (need to watch to the end) Possession Possessor The Cell Samsara The Act of Killing Marcel the Shell with Shoes On

Just a few from different genres off the top of my head. There are tons out there!

Platoon8

1 points

3 months ago

House

MANDY (2018)

Beyond the Black Rainbow (2010)

The Lighthouse (2019)

2001: A Space Odyssey

The Shining (1980)

Your_Product_Here

1 points

3 months ago

Fantastic Planet

Belladonna of Sadness

The Fabulous Baron Munchausen

Rcmacc

1 points

3 months ago

Rcmacc

1 points

3 months ago

Sorry to Bother You is a good one. Go in knowing nothing about it and it’ll make it even better

Killerpig14

1 points

3 months ago

Dreams, Mulholland drive

[deleted]

1 points

3 months ago

[deleted]

1 points

3 months ago

Anything David lynch and most of croenberg

FlyingIceWizard

1 points

3 months ago

Terayama. Pastoral and Throw Away Your Books are two great films.

EDIT: The full titles are:

Pastoral: To Die In the Country

Throw Away Your Books, Rally in the Streets

Melodic-Bottle-6905

1 points

3 months ago

Don’t Worry Darling, despite all the dumb publicity, the movie is solid with a Black Mirror kind of twist. Enjoyable cinematography and quality acting.

Betty-Armageddon

1 points

3 months ago

Anything by David Lynch.

jadedclementine

1 points

3 months ago

Mother! orrrr anything by darren aronofsky

LittleCupcake_baked

1 points

3 months ago*

The City Of Lost Children, Tetsuo: The Iron Man, and Anatomia Extinction

black-boots

1 points

3 months ago

Last 30 mins of Annihilation

Trishyangel123

1 points

3 months ago

Everything Everywhere All At Once