Most visually stunning films: The Cell (2000), The Fall (2006), Immortals (2011)

Most, if not all, filmmakers are quick to label themselves as “artists,” but in Tarsem Singh’s case, it’s a legitimate branding. A graduate of Pasadena’s Art Center College of Design, the Indian visionary is quick to cite the painters’ influences in all of his movies, and the inspirations shows in bright, eye-stroking manners.

For his debut, the phantasmagoric, Jennifer Lopez-starring thriller The Cell, Tarsem layered the flick with trippy imagery, namely the sight of a horse that gets split into pieces by falling glass; with his latest, and only third, feature, Immortals, he sent his mind back to the Renaissance, coloring the film to resemble the works of artist Michelangelo Caravaggio.

Watching a Tarsem movie, particularly Immortals, is similar to visiting the Guggenheim and staring at the artwork while tripping on shrooms. And, yes, the experience is as fun as that sounds, even if the film itself isn’t an award-winner.