Thriller

Colson Whitehead celebrates old Harlem in a hardboiled thriller that’s also a morality tale

16 October 2021 9:00 am

For modern America, Harlem is a once maligned, now much vaunted literary totem, which continues to occupy a gargantuan place…

The best Cold War thriller I've seen that I fully understand: The Courier reviewed

14 August 2021 9:00 am

The Courier is a Cold War spy thriller and the prospect of a Cold War spy thriller always makes my…

Much smarter than your average podcast: Passenger List reviewed

10 July 2021 9:00 am

Passenger List opens with a carefully structured ripple of breaking news bulletins: a mysterious catastrophe, an unconvincing official explanation, the…

Quietly radiates a wholly justified confidence: BBC 1’s The Pact reviewed

22 May 2021 9:00 am

There was certainly no lack of variety among new TV dramas this week, with a standard British thriller up against…

On the track of a mysterious recluse: Maxwell’s Demon, by Steven Hall, reviewed

13 February 2021 9:00 am

This is not the age of experimental fiction — it’s Franzen’s, not Foster Wallace’s. That shift was on its cusp…

Superb but depraved: BBC1’s The Serpent reviewed

9 January 2021 9:00 am

The Serpent is the best BBC drama series in ages — god knows how it slipped through the net —…

An extraordinary debut: Make Up reviewed

1 August 2020 9:00 am

Make Up is the first full-length film from writer–director Claire Oakley, set in an out-of-season holiday park on the Cornish…

Why does anyone still rate Vertigo and its creepy, wonky plot?

16 May 2020 9:00 am

Here’s something that may interest you. Or not. (Could go either way.) I was looking over Sight & Sound’s ‘100…

Classic tangled thriller: Sky's Gangs of London reviewed

24 April 2020 11:00 pm

There were plenty of TV shows around this week designed to cheer us up. Sky Atlantic’s Gangs of London, however,…

Sharp family saga with a thriller uneasily attached: ITV’s Flesh and Blood reviewed

29 February 2020 9:00 am

As in many thrillers, the characters on display in Flesh and Blood (ITV, Monday to Thursday) often seemed locked in…

Fabulous and enthralling: Parasite reviewed

7 February 2020 10:00 pm

Bong Joon-ho’s Parasite won the Bafta for best foreign film and is up for six Oscars and it is an…

The best Terminator film since the first: Terminator Six reviewed

26 October 2019 9:00 am

The first Terminator film, which came out in 1984, was a high-concept sci-fi serial killer thriller. You can just imagine…

Sian Clifford as Claire and Phoebe Waller-Bridge as Fleabag

Promising but, compared to the first series, short of laughs: Fleabag reviewed

9 March 2019 9:00 am

BBC2’s MotherFatherSon announced its status as a classy thriller in the traditional way: by ensuring that for quite a long…

Not like any serial-killer thriller you’ve seen before: Beast reviewed

28 April 2018 9:00 am

When I first read that Beast is a serial-killer thriller my heart sank like a stone — yet more women…

My knuckles went pure white and have yet to return to full colour: Custody reviewed

14 April 2018 9:00 am

Custody is both social realism and a thriller and it’s terrific. It is smart, beautifully acted, never crass about the…

Hideously watchable: Nicole Kidman as ophthalmologist Anna and Colin Farrell as surgeon Steven

Hideously watchable: Killing of a Sacred Deer reviewed

4 November 2017 9:00 am

You know where you aren’t with director Yorgos Lanthimos. The Greek allegorist creates parallel worlds which superficially resemble our own.…

More secrets and symbols

28 October 2017 9:00 am

Being reflexively snotty about Dan Brown’s writing is like slagging off Donald Trump’s spelling: it just entrenches everyone’s position. In…

Author Nathan Englander (Photo: Getty)

Highly charged territory

14 October 2017 9:00 am

I first heard of this tragicomic spy romp around Israel and Palestine when Julian Barnes sang its praises in the…

Mad house: Jennifer Lawrence as Mother

Nut job

16 September 2017 9:00 am

The film-maker Darren Aronofsky says he wrote Mother! in five days as if in a ‘fever dream’ and, as a…

Tears of a clown: ‘Clowns hate Stephen King. They blame him for the “creepy clown” epidemic, which has led to multiple clown arrests’

Art of darkness

14 September 2017 1:00 pm

Stephen King, 69, has sold more than 350 million books, and tries not to apologise for being working-class, or imaginative,…

Heavy-handed

29 July 2017 9:00 am

Oliver Cotton is an RSC stalwart who looks like a man born to greatness. Google him. He has the fearless…

David Quantick’s The Mule: lost in the world of translation

12 March 2016 9:00 am

For those who read the weekly music press during the 1980s, David Quantick’s was a name you could rely on.…

Richard Gere in The Benefactor

What were they thinking? The Benefactor reviewed

27 February 2016 9:00 am

The Benefactor is both a bad film and a thoroughly inexplicable one. It’s one of those what-were-they-thinking projects that wastes…

Inside the mind of a molester

13 February 2016 9:00 am

This isn’t a book to read before lights out. It’s about a mentally ill man whose mother exiles him from…

Joel Edgerton in The Gift

The plot has enough holes to file the Albert Hall: The Gift reviewed

8 August 2015 9:00 am

Were you ever not very nice at school? A bit of a tosspot to others, perhaps. Ever so slightly a…