21 Mind-Bending Movies That Will Make You Think Deeply

Posted by on July 18, 2017 in Films & TV, Media & Arts with 14 Comments
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By Mateo Sol | Loner Wolf

As humans, we have been telling stories since the beginning of time. Stories help us to understand important ideas and make sense of the world around us.

Stories are the fabric of our lives: our lives begin and end with a story. Each relationship in our life is a story, every dream, every experience is a story. Life itself is one big story composed of many smaller stories,  and every atom dancing is telling us its story.


It’s no surprise that we’ve fallen in love with movies: they perfectly embody stories. And stories can be powerful. We watch movies to find a sense of relief from our daily responsibilities, to experience excitement and intrigue, and to even feel our humanity again by letting them touch our hearts.

But films can also help us grow as individuals. They can encourage us to question our lives, to awaken to endless possibilities and help us to understand where we’re heading as a society. Most people are familiar with popular thought-provoking movies like The Matrix, Inception, Donnie Darko, Moon, V for Vendetta, Mulholland Dr., Memento, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind and Fight Club.

Related Article: 6 Mind Expanding Movies That Will Make You Question Reality & Life

There are also plenty of other movies out there that are just as thought-provoking, but not as well known. These movies are obscure because they lacked big budgets and therefore couldn’t hire as many actors. But in this obscurity, these movies preserved their souls, and the artistic visions behind each film stayed in tact without being influenced by the masses.

Here are some of the best little-known cryptic and mind-bending movies out there.

21 Mind-Bending Movies That Make You Think

Prepare to question everything you know!

1. Upstream Color (2013)

Description: 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.

Why It’s Thought Provoking: It’s a sensual experience of poetic ideas; modern disconnection, biophysical insecurity, and existential doubt.

2. TiMER (2009)

Description: When implanted in a person’s wrist, a TiMER counts down to the day the wearer finds true love. But Oona O’Leary faces the rare dilemma of a blank TiMER. Her soul mate – whoever and wherever he is – has yet to have a TiMER implanted. Staring down the barrel of thirty and tired of waiting for her would-be life partner to get off the dime, Oona breaks her own rules and falls for Mikey, a charming and inappropriately young supermarket clerk with a countdown of four months.

Related Article: 5 Fantasy Movies Which Have or Will Come True

Why It’s Thought Provoking: If a clock could count down to the moment you meet your soul mate, would you want to know?

3. Coherence (2013)

Description: On the night an astronomical anomaly passes close to the Earth, eight friends at a dinner party start experiencing strange and mysterious events. Soon it becomes clear that nothing and no one are what they appear to be.

Why It’s Thought Provoking: It explores the physics concept of Schrodinger’s Cat, and forces the question of whether we truly know what we’re capable of.

4. Primer (2004)

Description: While tweaking their current project, two young engineers accidentally discover that it has some highly unexpected capabilities – ones that could enable them to do and to have seemingly anything they want. Taking advantage of this unique opportunity is the first challenge they face. Dealing with the consequences is the next.

Why It’s Thought Provoking: What do you want when you can have anything? And if you have everything, what do you do?

5. Frequencies (2013)

Description: What if physics determined the laws of attraction? In a parallel world where human frequencies determine luck, love, and destiny, Zak, a young college student, must overcome science in order to love Marie, who emits a different frequency than his own. In an attempt to make their love a reality, Zak experiments on the laws of nature, putting in danger the cosmic equilibrium of fate and everything he holds dear.

Why It’s Thought Provoking: Are human conditions, actions, relationships determined by fate, free will, or a combination of both? At any rate, if it we cannot control it – should we care?

6. Waking Life (2001)

Description: A boy has a dream that he can float, but unless he holds on, he will drift away into the sky. Even when grows up, this idea recurs. After a strange accident, he walks through what may be a dream, flowing in and out of scenarios and encountering various characters. People he meets discuss science, philosophy and the life of dreaming and waking. The protagonist gradually becomes alarmed that he cannot awake from this confusing dream.

Why It’s Thought Provoking: What if you gradually become aware that you are walking through life in a dream state, but could not wake up from this confusing dream?

7. Extracted (2012)

 

 

Description: A scientist invents a technique to enter people’s memories deep within their subconscious mind when it is in its most vulnerable state. When he is tasked with entering a heroin addict mind who is a convicted criminal to see whether he committed murder, the scientist is faced with his most dangerous and risky memory extraction ever.

Why It’s Thought Provoking: How far is too deep into the darkness of another’s unconscious mind?

8. Open Your Eyes (1997)

Description: A once handsome playboy, César finds himself in a mental facility and can’t remember why. All he can remember is meeting the love of his life for one day, and then getting into a car accident which left his face horribly disfigured. But the pain of becoming physically undesirable may help him to find the truth.

Why It’s Thought Provoking: Where does reality end and fantasy begin?

9. I Origins (2014)

Description: Dr. Ian Gray, a molecular biologist is studying the evolution of the eye. He finds his work permeating his life after a brief encounter with an exotic young woman who slips away from him. As his research continues years later with his lab partner Karen, they make a stunning scientific discovery that has far reaching implications and complicates both his scientific and spiritual beliefs. Traveling half way around the world, he risks everything he has ever known to validate his theory.

Why It’s Thought Provoking: Which is right, science or faith, chance or destiny?

10. The Congress (2013)

Description: More than two decades after catapulting to stardom with The Princess Bride, an aging actress (Robin Wright) decides to take her final job: preserving her digital likeness for a future Hollywood. Through a deal made with her loyal agent, her alias will be controlled by the studio, and will star in any film they want with no restrictions. In return, she receives healthy compensation so she can care for her ailing son and her digitized character will stay forever young. Twenty years later, under the creative vision of the studio’s head animator, Wright’s digital double rises to immortal stardom. With her contract expiring, she is invited to take part in “The Congress” convention as she makes her comeback straight into the world of future fantasy cinema.

Why It’s Thought Provoking: This movie is a dystopian political story exploring the ideas of ageism in Hollywood and the soullessness of digital life.

11. Predestination (2014)

Description: A Temporal Agent is sent on an intricate series of time-travel journeys designed to prevent future killers from committing their crimes. Now, on his final assignment, the Agent must stop the one criminal that has eluded him throughout time and prevent a devastating attack in which thousands of lives will be lost.

Why It’s Thought Provoking: It’s an elegant study of the human self-identity.

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14 Reader Comments

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  1. erastuszion@gmail.com' zion says:

    send me more movies i can watch

  2. Frequencies and I Orgins were my fave!

  3. Sheena S Sheena S says:

    Shane Greenaway u seen any of these ?

  4. Sheena S only Open Your Eyes

  5. Sheena S oh and frequencies

  6. I’m gonna sit up all night and binge eat and watch all of these on my next day off.

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