Most visually stunning films: Irreversible (2002), Enter The Void (2009)

With only three full-length movies to his name, French extremist Gaspar Noé has undeniably established himself as one of modern-day cinema’s most visually driven directors—so much so that, in the case of Enter The Void, such frivolous things as story and developed characters are perfunctory distractions. A sadistic yet brilliant talent, Noé finds dementedly inventive ways to both hypnotize and disturb audiences; take 2002’s hard-to-withstand Irreversible, with its examination of a vicious rape that’s told backwards and kicked off by a dizzying, drugged-out, and cyclonic birds-eye-view tour of a darkly red lit gay club.

Enter The Void, a pupil-bashing experience that any self-respecting fan of movies needs to see at least once, takes that Irreversible sequence’s visual bewilderment and stretches it out into a 150-minute extravaganza of superficial nihilism. The camera quickly floats around mid-air, into inanimate objects (including an aborted fetus), and weaves throughout a freakishly erotic sex hotel. It’s the rare movie that totally justifies the clichéd recommendation “it’s unlike anything you’ve ever seen before.” That seems to be the only way Noé knows how to operate.