The American Neo-noir psychological film Shutter Island by one of the greatest directors of our time, Martin Scorsese is a visually stunning, incredibly acted and relentlessly gripping ballad. The brilliant and unrestrained mind-bending thrill of this film is riveting from the beginning to the very end. If you are looking for movies like Shutter Island that capture the internal and external intricacies of human emotions, then you’re at the right place!
We have curated a list of 10 truly amazing movies that you can check out. Shutter Island was adapted from Dennis Lehane’s best-selling novel of the same name. The story gets closer and closer to the horror of reality, and we, the viewers- like the characters find ourselves deeply pulled into the wrapping mystery. Scorsese crafted this film in a unique and moody tone that is as stylish as it is detailed.
List of Movies Like Shutter Island
1. Memento (2000)
When we talk about psychological thriller films, a couple of Christopher Nolan movies are bound to be on the list. One of Nolan’s early movies, Memento is a rare gem that presented a unique style of storytelling through a protagonist with memory loss. This movie engages the viewer in a mystery so exciting that it won’t lose your desire to participate in the questions about the protagonist’s (Leonard Shelby) life for a single minute.
Leonard is an insurance investigator suffering from a type of memory loss called anterograde amnesia. He keeps a series of notes and tattoos his body to hunt for a man that he thinks killed his wife. Memento is an exceptionally intelligent film that I highly recommend you watch after films like Shutter Island.
2. The Prestige (2006)
To follow on the list of Nolan’s greats is The Prestige. In a fictionalized world with Nikola Tesla (David Bowie), are 2 friends/fellow magicians turned enemies. After an accident in hands of Alfred (Christian Bale) kills Robert’s (Hugh Jackman) wife, both form a rivalry where Robert is obsessed with outdoing Alfred’s ‘special magic trick’.
The Prestige is one of the most brilliant, amazing movies of all time. This lesser known masterpiece will leave you gasping at its ingenious storyline and acting. Told in a narrative that goes back and forth in the timeline, is a film that plays out like an illusion itself. Few movies similar to Shutter Island have the capability of doing quite the magic The Prestige does.
3. The Girl on the Train (2016)
The psychological thriller movie The Girl on the Train is about divorced alcoholic Rachel Watson witnessing something shocking and getting entangled in a mystery of a missing woman. The story opens with Rachel (Emily Blunt), who is travelling on a train in New York, looking out of the window right when she discovers something horrifying.
And as you may have guessed, similar to movies like Shutter Island, the main character’s point of view brings in unprecedented suspicion to the mystery of the disappearance of Megan. The film does a great job of bringing details of Rachel’s life as the mystery progresses. Emily Blunt’s performance is worth every praise. For fans of mystery movies, The Girl on The Train is a great pick.
4. A Beautiful Mind (2001)
This is an incredible movie based on the real-life events of the Nobel-prize winner John Nash. He is known as a mathematical wizard and made incredible contributions to the field of economics. The story follows him when he’s working on a secret mission with the government. But there is a mystery, a sense of paranoia and a disconnect between John and the world.
Not only is this an incredibly thrilling film to watch but it’s one that inspires. John Nash’s story will not only touch your heart but you will be impressed with Russell Crowe’s exceptional performance. A Beautiful Mind is a perfect movie to watch on weekends if you’re looking for more films like Shutter Island.
Also Read: Movies About Mental Illness
5. Inception (2010)
It would be impossible to make a list of films like Shutter Island and not mention Inception. The third film on this list, and rightly so, is a gripping suspense thriller with Shutter Island’s Leonardo DiCaprio as the lead protagonist, Cobb. Working as a professional thief in cutting-edge dream technology, Cobb tries to pull corporate espionage. He longs to be with his kids but due to a certain event of the past, he can’t unless his name is cleared.
There is a shared complexity between both the characters of Leo- A question of how the world is truly built around him. With 8 Academy Awards nominations and 4 wins, this is one of the best films out there and personally one I’d recommend the most. So if you are a fan of movies like Shutter Island, you should definitely check out Inception.
6. The Uninvited (2009)
A teenage girl (Emily Browning) is admitted to a mental hospital after her mother is killed in a tragic accident. She meets up with her older sister (Arielle Kebbel) when she returns to her father’s estate on Maine’s coast and tries to get along with her dad’s new girlfriend (Elizabeth Banks), a former nurse (of her mother’s) who seems to be taking over. Her father is a successful author.
The Uninvited is a horror film that plays with the human psyche. The creepy atmosphere and unexpected twists are packed with genuine suspense, tension and shocks. As a fan of movies like Shutter Island, I’m sure the underrated and brilliant horror The Uninvited will knock your socks off and become one of your favourites.
7. Black Swan (2010)
At first, you wouldn’t think Shutter Island and Darren Aronofsky’s Black Swan wouldn’t have too much in common. One is a mystery with an FBI agent unravelling layers of truth and lies at an island hospital. While the other is all about a ballerina called Nina struggling with the pressures that come with the role of a lifetime. But if you scratch the surface, the two films share a lot of DNA.
Breathtaking, The Black Swan is a psychological thriller that perfects the unreliable POV of the protagonist. The plot is unique and the visuals are haunting. The performances are so amazing that the viewer gets lost in Nina’s struggles- whatever she feels, sees, hears and does. The Black Swan is a stunning choice for films like Shutter Island.
8. Fight Club (1999)
The 1996 David Fincher film Fight Club revolves around an unnamed narrator suffering from amnesia (Ed Norton), who is discontented with his life until he meets a soap maker named Tyler Durden (Brad Pitt), whom he forms a friendship with. Both men start a fight club and the narrator gets embroiled in a relationship woman named Marla Singer.
However, everything is not what it seems, as the narrator finds out the group is out of control and after a major revelation, he realizes there is only one way out. All you really need to know is that the first rule of Fight Club is, you have to watch Fight Club! Filled with fist-on-fist violence, this is a great pick similar to movies like Shutter Island.
9. Gone Girl (2014)
Yet another stunning film by David Fincher that you should consider is Gone Girl. The Movie focuses on Nick and Amy’s seemingly prim and perfect marriage. On their 5th wedding anniversary, Amy mysteriously vanishes, and all evidence points to Nick being implicated in her disappearance. Here we begin to piece together the genuine reality of their lives as the movie progresses.
Adapted from the page to the screen by novelist Gillian Flynn and directed by the modern master of psychological thrillers David Fincher, ‘Gone Girl’ is an intriguing and unsettling mystery thriller that has us questioning It eventually leads to the question of who should be judged in this case. Is Nick truly to blame, or was Amy the one who was wrong all along?. Similar to films like Shutter Island, this film is dark, moody and twisting that surprises and shocks, with questions raised about who we can believe and who we trust with the story.
10. Changeling (2008)
A single mother finds her son missing when she gets home one day in the tale. The cops then give her a child a few months later, but it’s not her son. The mom, Christine Collins (Angelina Jolie) is adamant that this child is not her son, but the police continue to insist that he is and accuse her of being insane.
An adaption of horrifying real-life events, the story’s intrigue and acting performances are moving. What’s really great about this movie is that it shows how corrupt and hypo-critic the system can be, especially to the law enforcement units who could use their power without restraint. As a fan of movies like Shutter Island, Changeling is a good option.
Here are a few psychological thriller movies like Shutter Island that didn’t make it to the list, but you can check them out nonetheless:
- The Machinist
- Mulholland Drive
- Jacob’s Ladder