“Noise,” directed by Steffen Geypens, was released on Netflix recently. The Belgian psychological thriller tells the story of social media influencer Matt (Ward Kerremans), who, with his wife Liv (Sallie Harmsen) and their baby Julius, move back to his hometown to look after his mentally ill father. The movie follows Matt in his investigation of a traumatic incident that had a significant effect on his childhood. “Noise” is kind of a slow burn, but the movie gets more interesting as Matt finds new and disturbing information on his investigative journey. The movie is also a psychological thriller, as Matt finds difficulty holding on to his sanity as he dives deep into the horrifying secrets of his family and hometown. If you’re looking for similar psychological thrillers, then check out these seven movies that we believe have similar themes to “Noise.”
Shutter Island (2010)
The magic duo of Martin Scorsese and Leonardo DiCaprio returned in 2010 to deliver yet another classic. Leonardo DiCaprio stars as Deputy U.S. Marshal Teddy Daniels, who, along with his new partner Chuck Aule (Mark Ruffalo), arrives at the Ashecliffe Hospital for the Mentally Insane, located on a secluded island cut off from the rest of the world. The duo aims to investigate the disappearance of Rachel Solando, a patient at Ashecliffe. “Shutter Island” is dubbed as one of the best mind-bending movies of all time, with a plot that turns on its head in completely unpredictable ways, leaving you in utter disbelief. The movie is a delicious mix of Neo-noir and psychodrama enamelled with period-appropriate set pieces and costumes. Scorsese, with his meticulous filmmaking, manages to successfully misdirect his audiences from pieces of evidence on what was to come later on, while DiCaprio was flawless as usual.
The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo (2011)
One of the many bright spots in director David Fincher’s filmography, “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo,” is visually stunning yet, at times, difficult to watch. The movie is adapted from Stieg Larsson’s 2005 novel of the same name and follows journalist Mikael Blomvist (Daniel Craig), who is tasked with investigating the disappearance of a girl from a wealthy family forty years ago. He seeks the help of a psychologically troubled computer hacker named Lisbeth Salander (Rooney Mara) before the two team up to solve the puzzling mystery. “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” has a dark, at times creepy subject matter, which perfectly suits the overall moody aesthetics of the film. The snowy landscape and secluded mansions all add to the darker themes presented in the movie. Rooney Mara was absolutely breathtaking here; she truly embodied the troubled and broken character of Lisbeth Salander; she even went as far as getting actual body piercings for the role. Daniel Craig was equally great, and the two form an odd relationship that is fascinating to watch. The movie has a run time that exceeds two and a half hours, but Fincher’s top-notch pacing lets us hardly feel any lag at all.
The Game (1997)
Yet another David Fincher film, “The Game,” follows Nicholas Van Orton (Michael Douglas), a successful albeit egotistical investment banker, who receives a mysterious birthday gift from his brother Conrad (Sean Penn). The gift was a voucher for a mysterious game that is said to be ‘life-changing.’ Nicholas tries to enrol in the game but drops his plan midway through the exhaustive mental and physical examinations one has to go through to participate in it. He moves on until his life starts to turn upside down, threatening his safety, wealth, and prestige. “The Game” is a near-flawless movie with immaculate direction, gorgeous cinematography, and a nail-biting script that hooks you with its steadily rising sense of dread and suspense.
“Memento” was the movie that truly showcased Christopher Nolan’s astounding talent. The movie follows Leonard Shelby (Guy Pearce), who suffers from anterograde amnesia that prevents him from acquiring any new memories. We follow him as he tries to cope with his psychological condition while trying to find his wife’s killer. “Memento” is one of the unique movies out there. Nolan made the film in such a way that most of the scenes are in reverse chronological order (from last to first), while some black-and-white sequences are in sequential order. Confused yet? Nolan deliberately (and ingeniously) edited the movie in this way to make the audience see it from Leonard’s point of view. “Memento” is arguably one of the greatest movies ever made and has a wholly original concept (something that’s rare nowadays).
The Empty Man (2020)
“The Empty Man” is based on Vanesa R. Del Rey and Cullen Bunn’s graphic novel of the same name. We follow ex-detective James Lasombra (James Badge Dale), who is investigating the disappearance of his neighbour’s daughter when he comes across a secret cult hell-bent on releasing a powerful ancient entity known as The Empty Man. First-time director David Prior surprises everyone with his unique vision and, more importantly, the way he executed it. “The Empty Man” has a compelling plot with major twists along the way. The movie is also shot exceptionally well and has a dark and ominous atmosphere that doesn’t fail to hook you in.
Secret Window (2004)
Directed by David Koepp, who is credited for the writing of all-time great movies such as “Jurassic Park,” “Indiana Jones,” and “Spider-Man (2000)”, comes “Secret Window,” a movie adaptation of Stephen King’s novella “Secret Window, Secret Garden.” The movie stars Johnny Depp as Mort Rainey, an accomplished author who retreats to a remote lake house to get away from his failed marriage. His peace is interrupted when a man arrives at his house, accusing Mort of plagiarising his work. Even though “Secret Window” isn’t top-notch cinema, Depp manages to hook you throughout the runtime with his quirky charm and magnetic charisma and is undoubtedly the best part of an otherwise forgettable movie.
Jacob’s Ladder (1990)
Jacob (Tim Robbins) is a Vietnam War veteran with an extreme case of dissociation. He finds himself living in different realities at different times of the day. “Jacob’s Ladder” is a truly one-of-a-kind movie, with its visceral imagery, body horror, and mind-bending dream sequences. The movie was shot on a limited budget and was relatively unknown on its release, but it has gone on to acquire a cult following over the years. It is almost too difficult to describe a movie so full of visions and paranoia, most of which are not real. It’s best to go into this one without much knowledge.