The best gripping thriller movies

Arielle Tchiprout
Photo credit: Sky

From Good Housekeeping

The tension! The suspense! The drama! Nothing quite beats a night on the sofa watching a brilliant thriller movie. Our favourites come complete with secrets waiting to be unravelled, crimes waiting to be solved, and shocking twists to make us gasp.

Ever since the dawn of Hollywood, thriller movies have been a staple of our ever-growing appetite for film. Thriller storylines are designed to induce strong feelings of excitement, fear, anxiety, tension and suspense - and it's incredible that movie-makers seem to come up with increasingly novel and creative ways to keep us on the edges of our seats.

So whether you love crime or fantasy, Leonardo DiCaprio or Liam Neeson, psychological thrillers, realistic mysteries or almost-horrors, we've rounded up our pick of the very best thriller movies out there.

Get Out (2017)

Photo credit: Sky

This horror/psychological thriller also serves as a satirical take on racism in the US as it follows Chris, a Black man who visits his white girlfriend's parents during a weekend away. They seem normal at first, but (yes, you guessed it) there are horrors ahead.

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Limitless (2011)

Bradley Cooper stars as Eddie, a man who is convinced to try a drug that will give him a razor-sharp mind. But can a limitless brain ever really be a good thing?

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The Invisible Man (2020)

Terrifying and tense: Elisabeth Moss stars as Kass, who is being terrorised by her abusive ex-boyfriend, a crazed scientist, who supposedly died. Although it's a sci-fi, it's scarily realistic and will have you hiding behind a cushion.

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Seven (1995)

Photo credit: Warner Bros - Sky


Brad Pitt, Morgan Freeman and Gwyneth Paltrow lead the charge in this thriller about a serial killer who murders people according to the seven deadly sins, and the detectives who must stop him.

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The Silence of the Lambs (1991)

Clarise Starling, an FBI agent played brilliantly by Jodie Foster, enlists the help of serial killer Hannibal Lecter in order to bring down another serial killer. It's a true classic, and is one of the most highly-rated movies of all time.

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Inside Man (2006)

Starring Denzel Washington and Clive Owen, this clever, pacy thriller centres around an elaborate bank heist on Wall Street.

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Gone Girl (2014)

Photo credit: 20th Century Fox - Sky

Based on the bestselling novel by Gillian Flynn, Ben Affleck plays Nick Dunne, a man whose wife - the captivating Amy, played by Rosamund Pike - mysteriously goes missing. The big twist is truly shocking and incredibly smart.

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The Sixth Sense (1999)

Malcolm Crowe - played by Bruce Willis is one of his most famous roles - is a child psychologist who starts working with a young boy who is able to communicate with unhappy spirits. In fact, he "sees dead people", in one of the most iconic lines in movie history.

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Taken (2008)

"I will find you, and I will kill you" is perhaps one of Liam Neeson's most famous movie quotes. He stars as a concerned father whose daughter is kidnapped by traffickers on a trip to Europe. Luckily, he's an ex-secret service agent, and goes on a mission to find her. The film was a massive hit, resulting in two sequels.

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Fight Club (1999)

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The first rule of fight club is... that you need to watch this cult favourite movie. Starring Brad Pitt, Edward Norton and Helena Bonham Carter, it's about an underground fight club which spirals out of control.

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Bird Box (2018)

Part dystopian fantasy, part pacy thriller, this Netflix original movie stars Sandra Bullock trying to survive in a world where a mysterious ghostly presence in the air is killing people - if only you look at it. With two children in tow, she sets out on an adventure to safety, blindfolded, with all-consuming danger at every turn.

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Inception (2010)

In one of his best ever roles, Leonardo DiCaprio plays a professional thief who can steal information from people by entering into their dreams. This time-warping, mind-bending movie won four academy awards.

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Argo (2012)

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Based on a true story, Ben Affleck plays secret agent Tony Mendez, who must rescue US diplomats from being held captive in Tehran by posing as a Hollywood producer.

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Memento (2000)

Written and directed by Christopher Nolan, this psychological thriller follows Leonard Shelby, an insurance investigator, who suffers from anterograde amnesia and uses notes and tattoos to hunt for the man he thinks killed his wife, which is the last thing he remembers.

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Kill Bill: Volume 1 (2003)

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The first of a classic series - featuring Uma Thurman in that yellow jumpsuit - is one of Quentin Tarantino's most famous films. Thurman stars as 'the Bride', who pledges revenge against a team of assassins - including their leader, Bill - after they try to kill her and her unborn child.

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