While many of us revel in the multimillion-dollar box office records of films such as RRR and KFG 2, it’s always a good time to shift our focus on underrated thriller movies. They often come from directors who might be largely unrecognised but end up weaving grippingly unique stories that can blend the complexities of the mind with intensely personal dramas at home. These underrated thrillers cover a range of countries and their culture, from Spain to Mexico to the suffocating and pretty woods of Kerala. So, mark all these fields and give each a shot.
7 underrated thriller movies streaming on Netflix and Amazon Prime Video:
1. The Son (2019) — Netflix
Domestic life, with all its conflicts and tension, always makes for a gripping watch. In this Argentinian film, a pregnant woman goes through an increasingly manic phase as her pregnancy date approaches. On the other hand, her husband has to contend with an unborn child and a chaotic wife. Chaos ensues.
2. Jallikattu (2019) — Amazon Prime Video
India’s official entry to the Oscars that year, the title of the film is also symbolic of the controversial bull-taming sport. The film focuses on a sleepy village in the woods of Kerala where a bull to be slaughtered escapes the butcher and goes on a rampage in the village, trampling everything on its way. Using the bull as a narrative tool, the film actually reveals the real beast inside the man.
3. Shahid (2012) — Google Play
This award-winning film is based on the inspiring real life of the titular lawyer who fought for the rights of young Muslim men wrongly convicted in terrorism cases. This one’s an underrated thriller among thriller movies as much as it is a scathing commentary on the divisiveness amidst us. Watch out for Rajkummar Rao’s breakout performance that cemented his position as the actor to watch out for.
4. Dance of the 41 (2020) — Netflix
Based on the real-life scandal that took place in the high society of Mexico in the late 1920s. The Mexican president’s closeted son-in-law frequents gay clubs and parties, while his straight wife navigates her own terrors. Things come to a head when the son-in-law’s secret gay lifestyle comes to light. One of the most engaging yet thriller movies, it will keep you hooked until the end and maybe even nudge you into shedding a tear.
5. Ombatthane Dikku (2022) — Amazon Prime Video
Set in Bengaluru, the local mafia boss sends his trusted lieutenant to close a deal. However, things don’t turn out to be smooth when he never returns. This underrated thriller movie is a crime drama that shows the truth about the middle-class life and packs the right punches and keeps you gripped till the end.
6. Aamir (2008) — Netflix
In this sleeper hit that deserves multiple awards for being such an underrated thriller, an ordinary office man’s family is kidnapped by terrorists. They make him do their bidding: plant bombs in the city and the failure to do so would mean his abducted family gets executed. A true race against time, this is a nail-biting thriller.
7. Malignant (2021) — Amazon Prime Video
In one of the most underrated horror and thriller movies directed by the director of The Conjuring, an ordinary woman is threatened by visions of strangers who seemingly are out to get her. A weird ball of energy, this film is not for the faint-hearted.