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Psychological thriller

Titles: The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (1920) - Psycho (1960) - Repulsion (1965) - Peeping Tom (1960) - In the Cut (2003)

Related: mystery - thriller - psychology - psychological horror - fiction

In the Cut (Unrated and Uncut Director's Edition) (2003) - Jane Campion [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]


Psychological thriller is a specific sub-genre of the wide-ranging thriller genre. However, this genre often incorporates elements from the mystery genre in addition to the typical traits of the thriller genre. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Psychological_thriller [Jul 2006]


One was a form that remained marginal until recent years, focusing on mentalities, criminal and/or victim. Quite a number of the early stories took the criminal's viewpoint, and were effectively psychothrillers where the interest was more why something happened than who did it, unroofing the brain rather than the house. Lytton's Paul Clifford (1828) is like this, and the dark psychology of Bill Sykes, Fagin and even Nancy is the strongest element in Dickens' Oliver Twist. This pattern lies behind a number of Poe's stories as well, such as 'The Black Cat', 'William Wilson' or 'The Fall of the House of Usher' (all 1839), and this move into the psyche of criminal and/or victim was both stimulating as a form of Gothic horror and was also a good way of avoiding the sheer difficulty of organising a plot to expose who the criminal really was: the mode has thrived in recent decades from the ironic semi-confessions of Patricia Highsmith's Ripley to the dark, even sado-masochistic, revelatory narratives of Thomas Harris. --http://www3.unibo.it/cotepra/bologna.html [Jul 2005]

see also: thriller - fiction - psycho

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