Most Beautiful Movies of the 21st Century That You Need To Watch

A beautiful movie done right has the power to keep the audience engrossed until the last frame. Good cinematography is when the lighting and camera movement in each frame and angle come together to enhance and augment the emotional intensity of a scene. The most important thing about it is that all these things must serve a purpose, otherwise, you’ll get a beautifully made film that lacks substance. The most beautiful movies of the 21st century do cinematography so well that it leaves audiences reeling. 

Some films are made with the intent of being a pleasing visual experience for the viewers. The breathtaking imagery portrays the meaning behind the storyline better than words and stays with the viewers long after they’ve ended. Visually pleasing films are like motion paintings. Here is a compilation of some of the most beautiful movies made in the 21st century that left a lasting impact on their viewers and are beloved by enthusiasts and critics alike.

Enter The Void (2009)

This film takes us from the perspective of a deceased drug dealer and addict. It is filled with mind-boggling yet breathtaking visuals akin to a psychedelic trip. The cinematography was done by Belgian cinematographer Benoît Debie whose other famous works include the Bronze Horse-winning crime/drama film Irréversible (2002).

Enter The Void is filmed in an unconventional style with cutting-edge camera movements. It is abstract, pure chaos, and knows no boundaries. The elements that make this film can leave you discombobulated at several scenes. Watching the film is certainly an experience and is on the top of our list of recommendations for beautiful movies.

Only God Forgives (2013)

Nicolas Winding Refn, who previously bagged Best Director at Cannes’ Film Festival for Drive (2011), was met with a train of criticism for “Only God Forgives.” However, the director was not discouraged in the least and instead welcomed the critique. He took the strong negative initial reaction as a compliment. According to Refn, he was glad the film got an extreme response because that meant his work left an impact.

To be concise, Only God Forgives is a revenge thriller filmed with a strong, impactful, and thrilling palette with heavy influences of blood-red tinged with gold. This was meticulously designed to be the primary focus of the film and while a lot of people may be deeply disturbed by the many visual elements that come together to complete the film. It can’t be denied that the film would be incomplete and the revenge thriller would not have been as rousing without them.

There Will Be Blood (2007)

This epic drama film is based on the 1927 novel “Oil!” by Upton Sinclair. It deals with the inner turmoil of man as he climbs his way up the economic ladder and the manner in which he kills his inner soul and conscience in the pursuit of money and status. The movie encompasses elements like religion, spirituality, capitalism, the fickle bond of human relationships, and greed.

Daniel Day-Lewis is phenomenal in the lead role of the ruthless oil prospector who rose from rags to riches and then gracelessly fell back into the pits of despair and poverty. This film made this list because of many things. The primary one being its legendary opening scene; the barren landscape and the explosion not only sets the mood for the entire film but also perfectly introduces us to the main character in a short but silent 15-minute scene that has absolutely no dialogue. Now, that’s good cinematography.

Gravity (2013)

This Sci-Fi thriller is a visually stunning masterpiece that leaves you with your breath caught in your throat especially if you watch it in 3D in the cinema. The masterful direction will have you gripping the edge of your seat. The story is, simply put, the tale of an astronaut who faces an accident on her spaceship and strives to get back home. Sandra Bullock’s performance is insanely moving. The cinematographer Emmanuel “Chivo” Lubezki received an Oscar for this movie, and it was well-deserved. The CGI combined with traditional film-making techniques resulted in a wonder. The 12-minute opening scene is one of the most loved scenes of the entire film. That one scene actually took years to shoot, as explained by the directors. 

Other beautiful movies that offer a meaningful visual experience are Samsara (2011), The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014), and Children of Men (2006). These most beautiful movies of the 21st century encapture how far the visual effects have come!

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