Scary movies are not born of unstoppable killers chopping down teenagers like trees. Truly frightening stories are crafted with strong characters, an original plot and an atmosphere that breeds suspense as the tale carefully unfolds. The best thrillers are the ones that linger in our minds and haunt our dreams long after we have left the theater. If you want to stay up all night, popping any of these six movies into your DVD player will turn you into an insomniac in a hurry:
"Silence of the Lambs" (1991):
There are so many levels of disturbing stuff in this movie. You have a cannibalistic psychopath helping an FBI agent catch another serial killer who is killing women just so he can make a suit out of their skins. It won the Academy Award for Best Picture after its release, in addition to winning for quite a few other categories as well.. Probably should have won the Academy Award for creepiness, forever and ever.
Alfred Hitchcock made an entire generation of women fear taking showers after Janet Leigh's infamous death scene. Hitchcock also made isolated motels feel like death traps for travelers after Norman Bates surrenders his mind to his “motherly” instincts. All the shower manufacturers and hotel owners losing money can feel free to bill his estate.
"Rear Window" (1954):
There's a lesson to be learned from “Rear Window.” If you suspect your neighbor killed his wife and you start taking pictures and send your hot girlfriend over to snoop around in his home, chances are good he is going to come after you. Besides, spying on neighbors is never a good idea when you're laid up with a broken leg. That Hitchcock guy was pretty good, wasn't he?
"Play Misty for Me" (1971):
Clint Eastwood transitioned into being an acclaimed director after age forced him to yield up his tough guy roles to younger actors. Eastwood's directorial debut immediately showed his talent for creating memorable films. He plays a disc jockey who is stalked by an obsessed female fan. It serves as a nice forerunner to the similarly themed “Misery” and proves that whenever you meet your “no. 1 fan” you need to run away as fast as you can.
"Cape Fear" (1991):
Niro can be after watching him serve as a comic foil to Ben Stiller and Billy Crystal. “Cape Fear” reinforces his skill in playing characters you don't want to meet in a dark alley. De Niro plays a convicted rapist who stalks the family of his defense attorney after his release prison. His most memorable moment comes when he straps himself to the chassis of a car just so he can attack the family on their houseboat. De Niro plays crazy with unmatched skill that makes him a frightening villain.