Hollywood has been a goldmine for psychopaths over the years. It seems that people can’t get enough of these crazy characters, and if you’re on the lookout for more psychos to add to your watchlist, then this list is just what you need!
Without further ado, here are the top fourteen Hollywood psychopath movies:
1. Psycho (1960)
Psycho is a 1960 film directed by Alfred Hitchcock, Psycho is perhaps the most iconic example of a psychopath in Hollywood. The plot follows Norman Bates, an unstable young man struggling with his domineering mother who runs their motel and lives as a woman named Norma. When Marion Crane arrives to collect some money from her employer’s real estate office, she steals a large amount of cash from the office and flees town. When she decides to take a detour off her planned route, Marion becomes lost in the middle of nowhere. She stops for the night at Bates Motel, where Norman welcomes her into his home before killing her with an ice pick.
2. Copycat (1995)
Copycat is a 1995 psychological thriller film directed by Jon Amiel and starring Holly Hunter, Sigourney Weaver, and Rosanna Arquette. The plot follows Jill Price (Hunter), an unstable young woman who decides to take revenge on the people she thinks were responsible for her lover’s death by killing strangers in similar fashions.
3. The Machinist (2004)
The Machinist is a psychological thriller movie directed by Brad Anderson and written by Scott Kosar. The film stars Christian Bale, Jennifer Jason Leigh, and Aitana Sánchez-Gijón. It tells the story of Trevor Reznik (Bale), a machinist whose insomnia and psychological problems lead to him becoming obsessive-compulsive, agoraphobic, and paranoid.
4. American Psycho (2000)
American Psycho is a 2000 American black comedy neo-noir film directed by Mary Harron, based on Bret Easton Ellis’s 1991 novel of the same name. The film stars Christian Bale, Willem Dafoe, Jared Leto, Josh Lucas, Chloë Sevigny, Samantha Mathis, and Cara Seymour.
5. Kiss the Girls (1997)
Kiss the Girls is a 1997 American thriller film directed by Gary Fleder and starring Morgan Freeman, Ashley Judd, and Cary Elwes. The screenplay by David Klass is based on the 1995 novel of the same name by James Patterson.
The film follows Dr. Alex Cross (Freeman), a forensic psychologist who travels to North Carolina to investigate the disappearance of a local politician’s daughter, Annie (Judd), and winds up investigating the disappearance of two other young women. While there, he is assisted by police detective John Sampson (Elwes), who also appeared in Patterson’s “Along Came A Spider.” The film was released on December 25, 1997 and got mixed reviews from critics.
6. Hannibal Rising (2007)
Hannibal Rising is a 2007 horror film and prequel to the Silence of the Lambs films Hannibal and Red Dragon. It stars Gaspard Ulliel as a young Hannibal Lecter, with Dominic West, Anthony Hopkins, Julianne Moore, Gary Oldman, and Ray Liotta in supporting roles.
The film covers Lecter’s formative years from his childhood in Lithuania, through the World War II era, until he escapes to Paris. He is portrayed as a misunderstood child who was forced by his cruel uncle (Oldman) into becoming a killer and cannibal.
7. Manhunter (1986)
Manhunter is a 1986 American psychological thriller film based on the novel Red Dragon by Thomas Harris. It was directed by Michael Mann and stars William Petersen, Brian Cox, Tom Noonan, Kim Greist, Stephen Lang, and Dennis Farina.
The story follows FBI Special Agent Will Graham (Petersen), who is called out of retirement to catch a serial killer known as The Tooth Fairy (Noonan). In the process, Graham comes to grips with the problems that caused him to retire in the first place. He is aided by his former colleague Jack Crawford (Cox) and FBI trainee Clarice Starling (Greist).
8. The Silence of the Lambs (1991)
The Silence of the Lambs is a 1991 American horror-thriller film directed by Jonathan Demme and starring Jodie Foster, Anthony Hopkins, and Scott Glenn. It is based on the 1988 novel of the same name by Thomas Harris and tells the story of FBI trainee Clarice Starling’s investigation into the serial killer Buffalo Bill.
The novel was originally published in 1981 as part of Harris’ series of novels featuring Dr. Hannibal Lecter, a brilliant psychiatrist, and cannibalistic serial killer.
9. Red Dragon (2002)
Red Dragon is a 2002 American psychological thriller film based on the novel Red Dragon by Thomas Harris. It was directed by Brett Ratner and stars Edward Norton, Anthony Hopkins, Ralph Fiennes, Harvey Keitel, Emily Watson, Mary-Louise Parker, and Philip Seymour Hoffman.
10. Silence of the Lambs (1991)
The film is the sixth installment of the Hannibal Lecter franchise. Set in America ten years after The Silence of the Lambs (1991), FBI profiler Will Graham seeks help from imprisoned former psychiatrist Dr. Lecter to catch a new serial killer nicknamed “The Tooth Fairy”, who skins his victims’ corpses.
11. Black Swan (2010)
Black Swan is a 2010 American psychological thriller film directed by Darren Aronofsky and starring Natalie Portman, Vincent Cassel, Mila Kunis, Barbara Hershey, and Winona Ryder. The story revolves around Nina (Portman), a ballerina in New York City who is artistic and perfectionistic and aspires to dance en pointe in a production of Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake. The film premiered as the opening selection for the 67th Venice International Film Festival on September 11, 2010, and was released theatrically in the United States on December 17, 2010, to critical acclaim.
12. The Dark Knight (2008)
The dark knight (2008) is a psychological thriller film directed, produced, and co-written by Christopher Nolan. The film stars Christian Bale as Batman/Bruce Wayne, Heath Ledger as The Joker, Michael Caine as Alfred Pennyworth, Gary Oldman as James Gordon, Aaron Eckhart as Harvey Dent/Two-Face, and Morgan Freeman as Lucius Fox.
Set eight years after the events of Batman Begins (2005), The Dark Knight depicts Batman’s struggle to protect Gotham City from villainous forces led by a terrorist known only as “The Joker.” With the help of Lieutenant Jim Gordon and District Attorney Harvey Dent, Batman sets out to dismantle the remaining criminal organizations that plague the city streets. The film is both critically and commercially successful worldwide.
13. No Country For Old Man (2007)
No country for old man (2007) is a neo-Western crime drama film written and directed by Joel Coen and Ethan Coen. Set in 1980, the movie follows an ordinary man (Josh Brolin) who stumbles upon fugitive drug runners in Texas desert. The trio takes him prisoner, but he escapes and sets out to find them before they can harm his family or himself again.
14. Gone Girl (2014)
Gone Girl is a 2014 British-American romantic crime drama mystery film directed by David Fincher and written by Gillian Flynn, adapted from her 2012 novel of the same name. The film stars Ben Affleck as Nick Dunne, a man accused of murdering his wife (Rosamund Pike).