It’s easy to mistakenly think that thrillers are the same as horror movies, but technically this isn’t the case. A thriller is defined by its ability to use a storyline to build suspense. Viewers are left on the edge of their seat as they watch a story unfold, never knowing quite what to expect next.
Important elements of these themes are ‘cover ups’ where the plot is not quite what it seems. Chase scenes are also a key feature of a thriller, with unrivalled action. They are films termed as ‘nail-biting’ and ‘adrenaline-inducing’, and certainly not the thing to watch right before you go to bed!
Thrillers have much cross-over into other genres. For example many films of a strong horror theme, such as those based on Stephen King novels, are classified as thrillers due to the level of suspense within. The film Misery is a great example of this.
Many that love the genre, seek out psychological thrillers in particular. Physiological thriller means that the conflict between characters is of a mental nature – Martin Scorsese’s Shutter Island is a classic example. Staring Leonardo DiCaprio, it is an American psychological thriller film set within a psychiatric facility on Shutter Island after one of the patients goes missing. The film has been a huge hit, and grossed over $294 million at the box office.
Along with psychological thrillers, supernatural thrillers are primary category. As the name suggests, these films incorporate otherworldly elements such as super powers, ghosts, and zombies. Top psychological thrillers include The Sixth Sense, Fallen and The Skeleton Key.
If you’re looking for a thriller to become absorbed in, why not try a film with Oscar Award claims to fame such as The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, The Departed, Black Swan or Mystic River or The Constant Gardener.
It’s also worth seeking out thrillers staring actors and actresses that appeal to you. Anthony Hopkins is famous for his talent to drive the storyline of a good thriller. Australian actress Nicole Kidman has also started in a number of award-winning thrillers such as Dead Calm and The Killing.
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