If you have finished watching “Lost” (based on a true story), followed by “Yami Gautam,” recently released on Zee5, and are craving more thrillers, here you go. Female-led thrillers are always a top choice, whether action-packed, slow-paced, or fast sagas. “Lost” has a multidimensional plot with an abrupt ending where Gautam, the female journalist, is committed to uncovering the truth about a missing young boy. It might not be possible to detail the whole incident within a few hours, but surely it could be amusingly dramatized. Sometimes thrillers are not about violence; they are overloaded with concerns, emotions, and deception that any dynamic woman would take an interest in scrutinizing.
No One Killed Jessica (2011)
Helmed by Rajkumar Gupta, the crime thriller features Rani Mukherjee (as Meera) and Vidya Balan (as Sabrina), two outstanding actresses from Bollywood. Jessica Lall, a young, gorgeous woman serving as a bartender, is gunned down by the son of a political leader, Manish. What’s her fault? She refused to provide a drink after the bar had closed. Manish, who is intoxicated by a massive dose of liquor, shoots Jessica out of his arrogance and sense of entitlement, and this is where Meera comes on the scene as a news channel reporter. Along with Sabrina, the responsible sister of Jessica, Meera will fight for justice and take the case to the ridiculous courtroom. With an aggressive, vulgar, yet sensitive attitude, Meera entices every heart out there with her million-dollar look. Sabrina is a contradiction to Meera: relatively subdued and silent yet effortlessly filled with hope and determination to resist strongly. On the whole, “No One Killed Jessica” creates a milestone in journalism through its neck-to-neck wrestling with a corrupted system, an amoral conscience, and gripping sweetness, along with hard-hitting dialogues, intense strokes of emotion, and a candle march.
Streaming Platform: Netflix (131 min.)
Another real-story-based movie, “Kahaani,” led by Vidya Balan (Vidya Bagchi) and directed by Sujoy Ghosh, is a riddle that confuses you with the mysteries behind celluloid balls. Vidya, a pregnant lady, travels from London to the dim lanes of Kolkata in search of her missing husband, Arnab, a software engineer. The mind-engaging film portrays how a woman becomes fearless and stronger when it comes to saving her family. From Chowringhee to Camac, trams to rickshaws, the creators showed the motifs of Durga puja through a splash of vermilion, saree supremacy, and the metaphors behind the submerged face of the Goddess. Rana(Parambrata Chatterjee), a young cop, develops a soft corner for the helpless woman while she makes it her own propaganda to reach the culprits like Bob Biswas, an agent cum triggerman. This is just a Kolkata thing for an individual to have two names; the bleak complexities of the film also discover the two faces of the characters where the vulnerable woman finally accomplishes her master plan by faking most of her character to the world.
Streaming Platform: Disney+Hotstar (122) min.
She Said (2022)
Directed by Maria Schrader, “She Said” is a silent thriller with loud voices that could lead the viewers to a dramatic high. The two smart reporters of The New York Times, Megan Twohey (Carey Mulligan) and Jodie Kantor (Zoe Kazan) are trying to get information out about the sexual harassment and assault happening at their workplace. It is not just a story of exposing the filthy intentions of Harvey Weinstein, but soon the duo realizes the situation is much more devastating than it looks. After several threats, Megan lost all hope of publishing her article, but eventually, she brought the story to the spotlight in aid of Jodie with solid proof to let the world know about the traumatic experiences a woman has to go through in every sphere of her life; this show moves forward the remarkable #metoo movement as well.
Streaming Platform: Amazon Prime (129 )min.
Set back in the early 90s, Cataleya (Zoe Saldana) is a fresh young woman who has been brought up with an ugly truth: back when she was only ten years old, she became the prime witness of her parent’s murder. Since that day, she has taken a vow to punish the Bogota gangsters and the drug lord who destroyed her loving family. She prepares to transform herself into a courageous assassin to dedicate her whole life to murder and revenge. The movie focuses on how an innocent mind turns into a complex and clever one; each of her moves is well-built, along with a tragic romantic ending and lots of unanswered questions.
Streaming Platform: Hulu (108 min.)
Escape From The Madhouse: The Nellie Bly Story (2019)
It is 1887, and the young American journalist Nellie Bly (Christina Ricci), in order to reveal the gruesome activities happening inside the Women’s Lunatic Asylum on Blackwell’s Island, gets herself admitted to the mental ward. The film provides a strenuous and fictionalized record of true facts encompassing Nellie’s therapies and how she has no clear memory of anything, including her true identity or how she ended up inside the asylum. Judith Light (Matron Grady), the owner of the hospital, gears her up to torture the patients with kerosene wash, sexual abuse, self-immolation acts, and other ways to keep them insane for life. The fake imprisonment of Nellie finally comes to a conclusion with the support of Dr. Josiah (Bowman); later on, she published a book highlighting the brutal tactics practiced in mental hospitals.
Streaming Platform: Hulu (88 min.)
Mardaani is one such movie that portrays the staunch desire and will of a female police officer, Shivani Shivaji Roy (played by Rani Mukherjee), who surpasses all limits to chase down Karan Rastogi, a kingpin who runs a syndicate involving drugs and child trafficking. She engages herself utterly to bring him down and rescue Pyaari, a teenage girl whom she had saved earlier from being sold by her uncle. Her love for Pyaari was no less than a mother’s love which enrages her to perceive the case at a personal level, leading her to outstrip her legal rights. The entire story, though intense and suspenseful, was delicately backed up by emotions, especially when it comes to duty versus family, where Shivani excels in maintaining the perfect balance and ultimately stands out as a heroic police officer beside a responsible family woman, presenting the barbaric chain of human trafficking.
Streaming Platform: Amazon Prime (113 min.)
With a crisp runtime, the movie is not so similar to “Lost,” but it is definitely a female-led film that portrays the unconditional love of a single mother, Karla Dyson (Halle Berry), a tense thriller by Luis Prieto. Out of nowhere, Frankie (Sage Correa) got kidnapped from a park where he was having a good time with his mom Karla. Without informing the police, Karla jumps into her SUV to bring her son back from the villains. From the car chase to the cat-and-mouse race, the mother cannot live a single second without the sight of her child; the movie is not as strong as a thriller but surely portrays the backbreaking attempts of a woman to keep viewers on the edge of their seats.
Streaming Platform: Amazon Prime (81 min.)