The top 10 thriller movies of all time, without question, will make the hair on the back of your neck stand up. In the world of movie criticism, thriller films are considered to be horror’s smarter, more intense cousin. The genre has had some great actors and auteurs, including the likes of Carey Grant and Alfred Hitchcock. If you’re looking to get into the thriller movie genre, start with this list of (arguably) the best ones ever made.
- “Psycho.” Made by the indomitable Alfred Hitchcock in 1960, “Psycho” is considered by many to be the thriller movie genre’s quintessential film. Its shower scene, in particular, has become a legendary piece of American pop culture.
- “Jaws.” This film’s infamous two-note soundtrack gives it a quality that few other thriller movies can match. It is suspenseful, realistic, and genuinely hair-raising. Though its special effects don’t live up to today’s standards, the acting and storyline easily make up for it.
- “Silence of the Lambs.” From the moment you are introduced to Anthony Hopkins’ character Hannibal Lecter, your skin will begin to crawl. The dialogue of this thriller is taut and smart, and the story the movie tells will stick with you for days.
- “Collateral.” Half action film and half thriller, “Collateral” pits a fantastically cold-blooded Tom Cruise against a very identifiable Jamie Foxx. Covering a single night and an extended encounter with a contract killer, this movie’s pace alone will keep you on a razor thin edge.
- “The Sixth Sense.” An M. Night Shyamalan masterpiece, this combination horror and thriller film has one of the best twists in modern movie history. While watching, be sure to look for clues – and keep an eye out for surprises.
- “The Bourne Identity.” In this thriller movie, Matt Damon stars as a grittier, more intense version of James Bond. Its action sequences are superb, the dialogue is smart, and the plot is put together in a way that will keep you enthralled.
- “A Clockwork Orange.” An iconic film made by the legendary Stanley Kubric, “A Clockwork Orange” explores the deepest, darkest parts of the human psyche. Its setting and plot mirror a real-life nightmare, and you will be both appalled and fascinated by it.
- “The Exorcist.” This movie is one of the best thriller and horror blends you will ever see. Both genuinely scary and gripping, “The Exorcist” has become something of an icon in American film.
- “Taxi Driver.” Supported by a fantastic performance from Robert De Niro as a (you guessed it) taxi driver who’s losing touch with reality. The atmosphere and quality of “Taxi Driver” earn its spot among history’s best thriller movies.
- “The Birds.” Any list of great thriller movies should be capped on both sides with Alfred Hitchcock classics. “The Birds”, about a town arbitrarily attacked by its own gigantic bird population, will strike a chord of adrenaline in you. Who knew birds could be so frightening?
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