15 best psychological thrillers – the best psychological thrillers to watch


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Jumping onto a scary scene in a horror movie is one thing, but psychological thrillers are all about confusing your mind – and it’s a whole different ball game.

Alfred Hitchcock, one of the most notable psychological thriller filmmakers of all time, aptly described the genre: “There is a distinct difference between ‘suspense’ and ‘surprise’, and yet many images continually confuse the two. Albert’s cup of tea, of course, was his ability to keep everyone on their toes. That said, he’s certainly not the only one who has mastered the art of suspense over time – the directors Jordan peele, Martin scorsese, and David Fincher have also created equally moving films full of unexpected intrigue and unreliable characters.

Whether you’re a huge psychological thriller fan or trying to find a mind-blowing movie to watch before Halloween, we’ve got a comprehensive list of the best hair-raising movies the genre has to offer. Chances are, you will feel inclined to check your locks after looking at them. Ah yes, and beware: twisted nightmares are almost a guarantee.

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The Silence of the Lambs (1991)

This film adaptation of the classic Thomas Harris novel follows a young FBI cadet named Clarice (Jodie foster) who needs help capturing a serial killer. She ends up looking for the former psychiatrist and incarcerated cannibal murderer, Dr. Hannibal Lecter (Anthony hopkins) to help in this terrifying task.

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The Train Girl (2016)

Every day on her journey, Rachel Watson (Emily blunt) sees a perfect couple from their window. Then, out of the blue, the woman disappears and Rachel finds herself at the center of a missing persons investigation that seems to get more complicated every second.

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Get Out (2017)

Chris (Daniel Kaluuya) and Rose (Allison williams) go on weekends to meet his family. While the goal for Chris is to get to know his parents, he finds himself in increasingly disturbing and strange situations.

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The Sixth Sense (1999)

When an 8 year old boy says, “I see dead people,” you know you’ve gone for a scary ride. In this movie, a little boy named Cole seeks help from a child psychologist (Bruce willis) to be able to speak to the dead. Twisted, indeed.

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Black Swan (2010)

Nina (Natalie Portman) is a serious dancer. To land the lead role in Tchaikovsky’s new production Swan Lake, she has to face her competition, Lily (Mila kunis), who plays the show’s Black Swan. As she competes for the role, Nina slowly loses her sense of reality and resorts to drastic measures to come out on top.

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American Psycho (2000)

Set in New York City and the 1980s, this film centers around Patrick (Christian Bale), an investment banking executive who hides his second life as a serial killer at night. Over time, his colleagues and friends become suspicious, but do they ever find out the truth?

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Girl Party (2014)

A former writer named Nick (Ben affleck) and his wife, Amy (Rosamund Pike), seem to have it all. Then, when Amy goes missing on their fifth wedding anniversary, he becomes the prime suspect in a crime … but did he really murder his wife? A series of twists and turns reveals the shocking truth – and it’s definitely not what you’d expect.

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Us (2019)

Adelaide (Lupita Nyong’o) Her family’s worst fears come true and when a group of attackers show up one night at her family’s seaside home. Things get even scarier when Adelaide and her family learn that each attacker looks like one of them. What does all this mean? Adelaide may know …

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Misery (1990)

A novelist named Paul (James caan), ends up in a serious car accident and ends up being rescued by Annie (Kathy bates), a former nurse. But when she learns that Paul killed his favorite character in his books, she takes it badly, to say the least. Get ready for heart-wrenching twists and gruesome scenes with a hammer.

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The Brilliant (1980)

Jack Torrance (Jack nicholson) decides to reconnect with his family by taking a job as a winter guard in a historic resort. What may seem like a fun job quickly turns into a spooky experience when he becomes tormented by disturbing thoughts and learns about the hotel’s dark history.

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Vertigo (1958)

This iconic Alfred hitchcock movie follows a former San Francisco police detective (James stewart), who is engaged in a case to prevent his friend’s wife from committing suicide.

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Joker (2019)

Arthur (Joaquin phoenix) is an aspiring comedian for positivity in an increasingly negative and dark Gotham City. Through various past and present experiences of abuse and mistreatment, Arthur, who suffers from mental illness, evolves into a criminal figure: the Joker.

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Cap Fear (1991)

A remake of the 1962 classic follows Max Cady (Robert de niro), who spent 14 years in prison. When Max is released, he devotes his life to destroying the lawyer (Nick nolte) who put him in prison.

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Ma (2019)

An outcast woman named Sue Ann (Octavia spencer) suddenly finds herself friends with a group of teenagers and agrees to let them party in her basement. But things start to happen that cause the teens to question his hospitality and reconsider their friendship.

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The Island of the Shutters (2010)

Finally, the handsome Edward Daniels (Leonardo DiCaprio) investigating the disappearance of a woman who escaped from a psychiatric hospital. Ultimately, he must fight his fears to get out of the island alive.

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