Create Game Lists on
FilmCrave home
   Movies  Members
Search +
Searching... Close  
Are you sure you want to delete this comment?
  Login Using Facebook

Mind-Bending Thrillers That Deserve a Second (or Third or Fourth) Look

View Chris Kavan's Profile

By Chris Kavan - 05/22/13 at 12:25 PM CT

I'm a big fan of movies that mess with my head. Some people don't like films that take multiple viewings to fully grasp, but I say, if you watch a movie and then immediately want to go back and watch that movie again to catch all the hints and clues you missed the first time around - that means the film succeeded. When I recently watched Steven Soderbergh's latest film, Side Effects, it reminded me just how much a well-crafted story can make your head spin - especially when it throws something at you that you never saw coming. Here are my favorite twisted psychological thrillers - the ones that even, years later, even after I know the story, still have that impact.


 photo Memento_zpse4131618.jpg

Leave it to Christopher Nolan to show you the ending first and then have you spend the rest of the film figuring out the story in reverse. Guy Pearce plays Leonard, a man with anterograde amnesia - meaning he essentially has no short term memory. This is tough as he's on the trail of the man who killed his wife with only his friend "Teddy" (Joe Pantoliano) along to help him. Needless to say, the non-linear nature as well as the use of time and memory means this is great film for multiple viewings and, no matter how many times you watch it, it never gets old.


 photo UsualSuspects_zpsedb3f5e1.jpg

Who is Keyser Söze? If you haven't had the chance to experience this film - don't spoil it. This is a movie that presents a crime from one viewpoint, that of Roger 'Verbal' Kint, the only surviving member of five-man crew that apparently was brought together out of a random criminal lineup. The fun comes in hearing this story and piecing things together only to find out that truth can be very subjective - and it's just as fun to go back around again and see how this convoluted story was molded.


 photo naomi_mulholland-drive_zps17b8a33e.jpg

David Lynch is a director in a category all his own and, in fact, pretty much any of his films could be included on his list. But Mulholland Drive - originally conceived as a television show (not that I would have loved to watch) takes some surreal turns that only Lynch could conceive. Trying to puzzle this one out may be a method in madness - it does have a point, but how much of the rest is there just to mess with your head? If you like a little dose of crazy thrown in with your mystery - this one's for you.


 photo Oldboy_zps252a0f91.jpg

I highly recommend the entire "revenge" trilogy from Chan-wook Park - but Oldboy is the standout. A man is released from captivity after 15 years and is given five days (along with the resources) to find out why. What follows is a violent, shocking and unrelenting need for revenge - but the plot goes much deeper and when the full story is revealed - let's just say that some people are willing to do anything for their version of "justice".


 photo JacobsLadder_zps3d622e4e.png

There are many great horror thrillers out there but I always find myself coming back to Jacob's Ladder when I need to find an amazing example. The film follows Tim Robbins - a Vietnam veteran having major PTSD issues - so much so that dreams (or really nightmares) and reality start to become harder and harder to differentiate. You spend the whole film trying to understand what he's going through - leading to one of my favorite reveals from any thriller. If you want a film that perfectly captures the atmosphere of psychological horror - this one would be it.

Any movie that makes you think twice about what you've just seen is a win in my book. I have to thank Side Effects for reminding me that it takes a special film to fill that niche. But when you find one that does, you'll want to experience it all over again.


Avoid spam Captcha: Sign Up + or Log In +   

View LeeAnn M.'s Profile

LeeAnn M.

Wrote on 05/23/13 at 09:29 AM CT

I would add The Sixth Sense to that list.

Write on Profile +

View Chris's Profile


Wrote on 05/22/13 at 08:18 PM CT

If you haven't seen these films - steel yourself and avoid and and all spoilers. I know it's tough - but it makes things all the better.

Write on Profile +

View Snoogans's Profile


Wrote on 05/22/13 at 05:05 PM CT

Great list! 'Memento' is one of my all-time favorites. It's a movie made to be watched more than once. The first time I saw it, I watched again immediately. First time I've ever done that.

Write on Profile +

View MikePA's Profile


Wrote on 05/22/13 at 03:19 PM CT

I'll confess. I've never seen The Usual Suspects.

Write on Profile +

Recent Blog Posts

All Posts

November 2018

October 2018

September 2018

August 2018

July 2018

June 2018

May 2018

April 2018

March 2018

February 2018

January 2018

December 2017

November 2017

October 2017

September 2017

August 2017

July 2017

June 2017

May 2017

April 2017

March 2017

February 2017

January 2017

December 2016

November 2016

October 2016

September 2016

August 2016

July 2016

June 2016

May 2016

April 2016

March 2016

February 2016

January 2016

December 2015

November 2015

October 2015

September 2015

August 2015

July 2015

June 2015

May 2015

April 2015

March 2015

February 2015

January 2015

December 2014

November 2014

October 2014

September 2014

August 2014

July 2014

June 2014

May 2014

April 2014

March 2014

February 2014

January 2014

December 2013

November 2013

October 2013

September 2013

August 2013

July 2013

June 2013

May 2013

April 2013

March 2013

February 2013

January 2013

December 2012

November 2012

October 2012

September 2012

August 2012

July 2012

June 2012

May 2012

April 2012

March 2012

February 2012

January 2012

December 2011

November 2011

October 2011

September 2011

August 2011

July 2011

June 2011

May 2011

April 2011

March 2011

February 2011

January 2011

December 2010

November 2010

October 2010

September 2010

August 2010

July 2010

June 2010

May 2010

April 2010

March 2010

February 2010

Log In
Help on how to log into FilmCrave
Login with Facebook
Login with FilmCrave
What Members Are Doing
Movie Talk
New Movie Reviews
New Movie Lists
Movies I've Watched by Chris Ghost
movies of 2010 by skater4159
Movies To Watch by Cinemaniac
Top Films of 1981 by Neobowler
Movies of 2013 by Stoney McStonerson
Top Movie List by Ben
Favorites of 2018 by Austin Shagwell
Best films of 2015 by Daniel




Contact FilmCrave Public Relations    

Advertise and Business

Developer API

Contact Us


About us



Support FilmCrave

FAQ and Help

News and Press

Terms of Use


Are you sure you want to delete this comment?
Are you sure you want to delete this blog?