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12 + 1 movies about psychopathy that every movie buff should know

12 + 1 movies about psychopathy that every movie buff should know

May 24, 2022

As we all know, the figure of the psychopath has been used repeatedly in the world of cinema. Normally, characters with psychopathic traits are represented by the typical knife killer who chases young teenagers They are having a crazy evening with their friends.

Movies about psychopaths: the definitive ranking

But we go beyond that. We invite you to the most moviegoers and, especially, to the followers of this kind of genre, to get into the world of antisocial personality disorder through the magic of cinema. To achieve this, we have developed a list of films particularly recommended by a passionate about this subject.


We will not reveal "spoilers" about the films so you can enjoy them completely!

Classics as long as they tackle psychopathy

We can not inaugurate this article without mentioning, of course, the classic films that tackle psychopathy . Surely many of them you will already know, but we should not ignore these jewels from the world of entertainment.

1. The silence of the lambs (1991)

Considered cult film and one of the best of the horror genre, we find a classic: The silence of the lambs (along with all the others in the saga), with Hannibal Lecter as the protagonist represented by the great Anthony Hopkins, it was a winning film of five Oscars.


The FBI is looking for the so-called "Buffalo Bill", a serial killer who pursues and murders teenagers , painstakingly preparing each crime and tearing off the skin afterwards. Clarice Starling, an expert in psychopathic behaviors is hired to help catch this ruthless killer. To do so, visit the high security prison where Hannibal Lecter, a former psychoanalyst and cruel murderer and endowed with an intelligence far superior to the common one, is hospitalized, in order to obtain information about the behavior patterns of the free-riding murderer.

2. American Psycho (2000)

Patrick Bateman , played by the famous and charming Christian Bale, is a handsome and successful yuppie Wall Street apparently has it all: he is chivalrous, attractive, intelligent, powerful and gets the woman he wants. But it seems that, beneath all this apparent perfection, there resides a sadistic potential killer, which no one suspects because of his high social status.


For those of you who have not seen this movie, what are you waiting for? Absolutely recommended, heartbreaking, with touches of acid humor that go hand-in-hand, mixed with scenes of depravity that make American Psycho in an essential film about psychopathy.

3. The mechanical orange (1971)

Directed by the excellent and tedious Stanley Kubrick , the story of The mechanical orange is about a boy (in charge of the very successful Malcolm McDowell), who is accustomed to a stormy life, full of violence and chaos. After multiple criminal acts committed by him and his companions, he is finally captured and imprisoned. During his internment as a prisoner, he decides to submit voluntarily to a method based on behavioral psychology that aims to suppress violent impulses.

Probably, The mechanical orange is the best-known film about antisocial personality disorder. A famous film that, despite having more than 40 years in the retina of moviegoers around the world, is still one of the best cinematographic creations in history, as well as one of the most interesting for deepening criminal behavior.

4. The glow (1980)

Following the direction of Stanley Kubrick and starring the experienced Jack Nicholson, the film is about the history of Jack Torrance , an ex-alcoholic writer who moves with his family to a lonely high mountain hotel to work as a night watchman.

Once there, he begins to suffer a series of psychic changes that lead to a spiral of violence against his wife and son. In this case, the personality of the protagonist would fit better in the sociopathy, for the psychological change that Jack suffers due to the sudden change in his life.

5. Psycho (1960)

We could not make this list without naming the famous movie Psychosis, directed by Alfred Hitchcok and starring Anthony Perkins.

This film is about the search for the secretary's killer Marion Crane , an intrepid woman who was housed in a lonely roadside motel after having run away with her company's money.

6. Se7en (1995)

Essential. Directed by David Fincher and with a luxury cast, with Morgan Freeman , Brad Pitt , Gwyneth Paltrow Y Kevin Spacey . A series of murders keep two police departments of the investigation department in suspense. Horrified by the cruelty of the crimes, they are surprised by the hidden message the murderer is trying to make.

With one of the most unexpected endings in the history of cinema, Se7en takes the viewer to the limit, transporting him to the world of a macabre psychopath whose goal is to leave a dark message to humanity.

Recent films about psychopathy

At last! Once reviewed the indisputable classics that combine high quality films with psychopathic characters, the time has come to review some billboard titles with less than a decade of life and they also talk about characters with antisocial personality disorder.

7. Funny games (2007)

A couple and their son are going to spend a few days and to rest at their vacation home. Newcomers, they meet two young people (Michael Pitt and Brady Corbet), apparently very cordial and polite, who ask them for eggs. From that moment, the family will be involved in a hell that they wish they had not been partakers in their worst nightmares.

Although there is an earlier version, I will recommend the remake more current Endowed with scenes of extreme cruelty, it is disturbing, Not suitable for sensitive people! In order not to spoil the sensations that are experienced when viewing this film, I will not explain anything else. Of course, I recommend you not watch the trailer. Enjoy it! Simply, it has no waste.

8. Joshua, the son of evil (2007)

A couple like any other celebrates the birth of their second child, Lily. Joshua, their first child, is not an ordinary child. He has an intelligence and precocity that frightens. He shows a macabre serenity for his young age, and he seems increasingly unhappy with the arrival of his sister in the family.

Subsequently, the family will be involved in a serious situation of domestic terror that they would never have expected. The reason?

9. Hard candy (2005)

Jeff, a 32-year-old photographer, organizes a meeting with Hayley (played by a very young Ellen Page), a 14-year-old girl with whom she has been chatting on the Internet for a while. After citing himself for coffee, Jeff invites Hayley to his house in order to make a photo shoot.

A spooky, twisted film that plays with the mind of the spectator and leaves no one indifferent. Totally recommended!

10. The perfume (2006)

Jean Baptiste was born among the remains of fish and rot, abandoned by his mother. He was sent to a hospice where he was brought up in a totally hostile environment, repudiated by all due to his strange peculiarity: he lacked body odor. Although, however, he had an exceptional sense of smell, which led him to become obsessed with catching all kinds of essences: the smell of glass, copper ... and young and beautiful women.

Excellent film that won multiple awards and recognitions. In the line of The silence of the lambs, following a serial killer who commits his crimes in a very peculiar way and whose victims are only women.

11. Stoker (Perverse ties, 2013)

The film is about India Stoker , a teenager who loses her father. Since then his life is broken, because his father was the only person with whom he felt a deep bond. His impassive behavior hides deep dark feelings, which will be understood and shared by his uncle's Charlie , character that will appear by surprise to take care of her and her unstable mother (Nicole Kidman).

Film special and surprising at least, for its delicate and poetic way of dealing with violence and disturbance, mixing exquisitely with eroticism.

12. We have to talk about Kevin (2011)

Last but not least, my biggest discovery and my most recommended recent film about antisocial personality disorder.

Starring the unmatched Ezra Miller (in his adolescent stage) and nominated for several awards, this film is mainly about Kevin and his mother Eva. Since his birth, Kevin is a difficult child: he does not show any appreciation to his mother, he cries incessantly, he does not learn to go to the bathroom just to bother and he shows no interest in anything. As the child grows, his behavior is increasingly sinister and his relationship with the mother more conflictive.

A film that combines parts of the past and present, keeping the viewer in constant uncertainty. Exquisitely disturbing, with little dialogue and playing with textures, colors ... to let the viewer's mind flow in all kinds of sensations. Only recommended for true followers of the genre!

Shutter island (2010)

This film does not completely conform to the criterion of antisocial personality disorder. In fact, it may be more related to another psychopathology: post-traumatic stress disorder. But I wanted to include it in this ranking of films that deal with psychopathy, not only because of its indirect relation to the disorder but because of its enormous psychological relevance.Well, let's say it all: because I consider it an absolutely wonderful movie.

I will not tell you about it, for the same reason Funny Games. Just ... enjoy every second of this work of art!


How Psycho Created It's Own Thriller Genre | Film Buff (May 2022).


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