11 Movies to Watch If You Enjoyed Shutter Island
Martin Scorsese’s psychological thriller Shutter Island has quickly become a classic. If you enjoy the film, you’ll enjoy these other 11 options.
Although Martin Scorsese is better known for his Mafia films and not for his psychological thrillers, the latter was a triumph. Leonardo DiCaprio plays a United States Marshal in Shutter Island. A marshal is dispatched to an isolated island asylum to look into the disappearance of a patient.
The case is revealed to be much more evil than the Marshal first suspected through a series of horrific flashbacks and plot twists. If you enjoyed Shutter Island, you might also enjoy these 11 more dark thrillers.
The Silence of the Lambs
The movie, based on a novel by Thomas Harris, was only the third to sweep the major Oscar categories. Anthony Hopkins won Best Actor despite appearing on screen for less than 30 minutes. Clarice Starling, played by Jodie Foster, is a new FBI agent who faces discrimination for being a woman in a traditionally male-dominated field.
She is tasked with finding Buffalo Bill, a serial murderer responsible for the kidnapping and dismemberment of numerous female victims. Dr. Hannibal Lecter, a cannibalistic murderer and psychiatrist with a curiously endearing demeanor offers to aid her with her inquiry (Hopkins).
In the mid-1990s, director David Fincher created a gruesome hybrid of film noir and slasher cinema. Morgan Freeman plays a grizzled investigator on the verge of retirement, and Brad Pitt is a youthful, charismatic rookie at the police department; together, they form a sort of “buddy cop” duo. When a serial murderer named “John Doe” begins picking victims randomly and labeling them with one of the Seven Deadly Sins, the two are put together.
The script by Andrew Kevin Walker is expertly written and full of twists and turns. The plot suddenly shifts to the left when you think you know where it’s heading, and it hits you over the head with the story.
Darren Aronofsky’s Black Swan was influenced by Dostoevsky’s The Double. After tackling what Aronofsky calls “the most lowbrow art form” in his last film, The Wrestler, the filmmaker opted to tackle what he calls “the most highbrow art form” in his next movie, Black Swan, starring the Bolshoi Ballet.
Natalie Portman plays a ballerina preparing for a role in Swan Lake, and Mila Kunis co-stars as her main competition. The film is like a work of cinematic poetry, with the narrative of Portman’s production of Swan Lake flowing naturally into that of the ballet itself.
The Sixth Sense
The Sixth Sense, M. Night Shyamalan’s first major success, is also the film in which his fondness for surprising endings was first evident. Troubled teen Haley Joel Osment plays the lead role of a boy who can communicate with the dead. The boy’s mother (Toni Collette) takes him to a psychiatrist (Bruce Willis).
The spectator is so shocked by the disclosure that they don’t mind that the twist doesn’t entirely fit in with the rest of the movie’s reasoning. When it comes to boxing office success, Shyamalan hasn’t been able to beat The Sixth Sense, the film that launched his career.
Primal Fear introduced audiences to a darker side of Richard Gere and launched the career of Edward Norton, and it frequently appears on lists of movies with the most stunning story twists. Gere plays a lawyer who has convinced his client, an altar boy played by Norton, is innocent of killing a prominent Catholic Archbishop.
The film has aspects of the neo-noir style and the courtroom drama, among other genres, which is a good sign because it indicates that the filmmakers were able to create a unique style for the film.
When David Fincher decided to make a movie out of Gillian Flynn’s novel, he enlisted Flynn to write the script. Nick, played by Ben Affleck, is an ordinary man who becomes everyone’s enemy when his wife, Rosamund Pike’s character, disappears.
Affleck and Pike have outstanding performances, and the plot is full of unexpected turns that add to the film’s overall tension.
Like Shutter Island, David Fincher’s Fight Club, based on Chuck Palahniuk’s debut novel of the same name, delves deep into the protagonist’s psyche and culminates in a devastating, gut-punching plot twist.
The leads, an office drone named the Narrator (Edward Norton) and an anarchist soap maker named Tyler Durden (Brad Pitt), who helps the Narrator break out of his shell and experience life to the fullest, are two of the most interesting characters in recent cinema.
Part of the suspense in Shutter Island comes from the audience; the protagonist is never quite sure what’s real or not. American Psycho, adapted from the controversial novel by Bret Easton Ellis, does precisely that.
It’s a nasty, horror-tinged satire of the corporate lifestyle at the outset, but by the middle, it’s developed into an engaging psychological thrill ride. Christian Bale’s performance as Patrick Bateman is riveting.
All the plot threads don’t appear to line up entirely and make sense, creating an underlying feeling of anxiety throughout Shutter Island.
With all of Lynch’s trademark surrealism and a dash of bitter truth stemming from his cynical take on the condition of the film industry, this sentiment permeates Lynch’s dark Hollywood satire, Mulholland Drive.
Taxi Driver, directed by Martin Scorsese (Shutter Island), is arguably the bleakest and most unsettling psychological thriller ever filmed. Travis Bickle is a Vietnam War veteran with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), takes a job as a New York City cab driver to occupy his restless evenings, and ultimately resolves to take matters into his own hands when he sees that the city’s streets are overrun with criminals.
Scorsese introduces the lighting tactics, and camera angles of the film noir to filthy 1970s New York, and Robert De Niro offers one of his best performances as Bickle.
Jacob’s Ladder is one of the most underrated thrillers ever because of its paranoid, gloomy, and bizarre atmosphere. It delves as deeply into the protagonist’s mind as Shutter Island did. Tim Robbins stars as Jacob in the film Jacob’s Ladder, a character haunted by his experiences in Vietnam and trying to make sense of his hallucinations.
Jacob’s Ladder is a brilliantly crafted, mind-bending, and aesthetically pleasing psychological thriller written by Bruce Joel Rubin (who thinks about the notion of the afterlife a lot, given it’s the focus of four of his movies: Ghost, Brainstorm, Deadly Friend, and this).
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