The 10 Best Mind-Bending Romances

These offbeat romances occupy a small but growing sub-niche of both the science fiction and fantasy genre and the romance genre. Some might be called science fiction or fantasy films at their heart, with romance elements.  Others might be called romances at heart, with fantasy or science fiction elements. Regardless of how the viewer chooses to see each individual film, they clearly all cross boundaries, and tell strange tales with unexpected twists, in the tradition of mind-bending cinema.

I’ve ordered them in what I consider ascending order, and chosen fairly recent films, all in the English language.  I could have chosen a number of foreign films to appear in this list, for example perhaps the charming French film, Amelie, or another French mind-bending masterpiece, The Double Life of Veronique.  Perhaps I’ll write a separate review for some of those foreign films which might fit this odd cross-genre group of films.

In any case, each of these stories has delightful romantic elements than any lover of romance films should enjoy, and each of them has enough unexpected twists and turns to entertain any lover of mind-bending films.

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Movie Review: Enter the Void

Enter the VoidEvery so often a truly unique and visionary film comes along, and gives viewers something authentically newto look at. Enter the Void, written and directed by Gaspar Noé, is one such film. This motion picture captures the psychedelic experience in ways that previous films have only attempted, and also tells a gripping human drama that unfolds in a truly unconventional manner. In this film, he has created a surrealist and avant garde masterpiece of modern cinema that is, in many ways, unrivaled. While the film does have some weaknesses, it was so visually stunning and emotionally powerful that it gripped my consciousness for many days.  Even a couple of weeks later, I’m still thinking about it. Few films have such a profound effect upon me.

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The 10 Best Directors of Mind-Bending Movies

It is always difficult to whittle down such a list to a mere ten people.  Someone will always be left out.  With mind-bending cinema, this certainly holds true.  So many great films have been made over so many years, that it was difficult to choose where to draw lines when making this list.

I have chosen to limit myself strictly to modern directors, most of whom are still alive today, and still producing films (with one notable exception).  I have also chosen to limit myself to directors who make films in the English language.

I expect some criticism for these choices, and a large number of comments about directors that have sadly been left off of this short list.  Please feel free to add your comments.  They’ll help many people to find great works of mind-bending film that they might not otherwise have discovered, and that’s the whole point of this blog.  Comment away!  Let me know who I left out.  Perhaps you’ll even spark some follow-up articles about other great directors of cinema.

Now, on with the list:

Wes Craven

Wes Craven

10. Wes Craven

Director Wes Craven is probably most famous for originating the Nightmare on Elm Street series of horror movies, as well as the infamous character Freddy Krueger, or for his tongue-in-cheek mind-bending series of films that began with Scream.

No other director of mind-bending horror movies has been nearly as successful, nor as prolific, as Wes Craven.  Craven has a knack for getting inside the head of the viewers, and creating ideas and images that infect the mind, disturbing the sleep of a viewer for several nights, or possibly weeks.  He also has a way of telling a story that conceals from even many astute viewers exactly what is coming next.  With clever plot twists and turns, and a new scare around every corner, Craven has created some of the most haunting mind-bending motion pictures in history.

Craven has to his credit a number of the better mind-bending horror films made to date, beginning with A Nightmare on Elm Street in 1984, and followed by The Serpent and the Rainbow in 1988, Wes Craven’s New Nightmare in 1994, and the Scream series in 1996, 1997, 2000, and presumably ending with Scream 4 in 2011.  He also directed the mind-bending thriller Red Eye in 2005.

I feel the three movies in this group of mind-bending tales stand out as his best: A Nightmare on Elm Street, Scream, and Red-Eye.

Whatever else you can say about Wes Craven, either good or bad, you must recognize him as a powerful director simply for what you see on the streets on any given Halloween in the USA.  Thousands of people, every single year, will dress as Freddy Krueger of the Nightmare films, or as the Ghostface Killer of the Scream series.  They have become two of the greatest and most well-known icons of Hollywood horror, and are loved by fans around the world.

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