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Silver Screen Streak List #26: Psychological Thrillers

Silver Screen Streak List #26: Psychological Thrillers

Written by dorrk
13 May 2024

After more than four years, we are now achingly close to the end of the First Round of the Silver Screen Streak movie challenge. The 26th and final list that was submitted to me all those years ago came from Flickcharter Patrick Gray, who shrewdly selected a rich category for me to explore: Psychological Thrillers, as ranked on Flickchart. I have almost 50 movies from this genre in the top 10% of my Flickchart, and I can be pretty forgiving of flaws in storytelling and other technical issues when a movie's pulpy tone is well-honed, or it finds a particularly gnarly mental dysfunction to exploit.

The downside to this list is that I've already covered this genre pretty extensively. Only four of Flickchart's Top 100 Psychological Thrillers are on my "haven't seen" list, and one of those I did watch 30 years ago and have a hazy recollection of feeling unimpressed by it. The good news is that this list features a lot of exciting titles that have been languishing on my too-long watchlist for a decade, including several of my blindspots in Hitchcock's filmography and some tasty-looking film noirs.

Silver Screen Streak List #26: Psychological Thrillers

The First Two

I'll watch the first two movies from this list. If I don't like what I see, I will move on to the next list.
Suspicion (1941); Dir.: Alfred Hitchcock

Suspicion (1941)

Dir.: Alfred Hitchcock

I did watch this Hitchcock classic — which won Joan Fontaine a Best Actress Oscar — back in my high school or college days, and considered it a silly, lesser effort in the great director's canon. It's time for a reappraisal.

The Skin I Live In (2011); Dir.: Pedro Almodóvar

The Skin I Live In (2011)

Dir.: Pedro Almodóvar

I don't always have patience for Pedro Almodóvar, but I tend to like more his movies that have a thriller element — such as Tie Me Up, Tie Me Down — rather than just eccentric soap opera drama, so this long-term watchlist lingerer will finally get the attention it deserves.

What happens next

If I make it past The Skin I Live In (2011), here's what lies in wait for me.
Marnie (1964); Dir.: Alfred Hitchcock

Marnie (1964)

Dir.: Alfred Hitchcock

I've heard that is one of Hitchcock's most uncomfortable movies, so I've been itching to watch it.

Open Your Eyes (1997); Dir.: Alejandro Amenábar

Open Your Eyes (1997)

Dir.: Alejandro Amenábar

Another entry from Spain. I have seen and did not like at all Cameron Crowe's American remake of this, Vanilla SKY (2001), but I'm hopeful that this original will be less annoying in tone.

Purple Noon (1960); Dir.: René Clément

Purple Noon (1960)

Dir.: René Clément

I've been waiting to watch this early French adaption of The Talented Mr. Ripley for ages.

The Lodger (1927); Dir.: Alfred Hitchcock

The Lodger (1927)

Dir.: Alfred Hitchcock

Another Hitchcock, this one from the silent era, an area of his filmography that I have not explored at all.

Niagara (1953); Dir.: Henry Hathaway

Niagara (1953)

Dir.: Henry Hathaway

A Marilyn Monroe film noir.

And if all that goes well, there's more where those came from:

Sabotage (1936); Dir.: Alfred Hitchcock
The Spiral Staircase (1945); Dir.: Robert Siodmak
Le Corbeau (1943); Dir.: Henri-Georges Clouzot
The Narrow Margin (1952); Dir.: Richard Fleischer
Bunny Lake Is Missing (1965); Dir.: Otto Preminger
Kiss of Death (1947); Dir.: Henry Hathaway
Dead Calm (1989); Dir.: Phillip Noyce
Stage Fright (1950); Dir.: Alfred Hitchcock

Etc. and etc.