5 Guilty Pleasure Thrillers to Enjoy while Staying at Home

Happy Throwback Thursday! Staying at home has really allowed me to enjoy a lot of new television series and movies. However, there are some old favorites that I wanted to return to. Netflix has recently been releasing some guilty pleasure Lifetime-like thrillers such as Secret Obsession and Dangerous Lies, which really got me thinking about some of my own personal favorite guilty pleasure thrillers.

While nothing compares to watching these films for the very first time, there is this rush I get whenever I watch them. Sure, some of them are somewhat predictable and have outrageous plots, but that’s why I love them. They are the perfect films to binge-watch staying at home while enjoying a nice glass of wine and a snack…or two.

Either way, these films will certainly provide you with some edge of your seat tension to shake things up while staying at home. Please note spoilers have been left out for your convenience. Enjoy!

My top 5 Guilty Pleasure Thriller films of all time are:

5

Red Eye

Red Eye
Image courtesy of HBO

Released in 2005, Red Eye stars Rachel McAdams and Cillian Murphy and is directed by Wes Craven. A lot of people forget about this movie, but I actually saw it in theaters and loved it!

Synopsis: Hotel manager, Lisa boards a plane and sits next to a charming stranger. Things seem to be going well until the stranger reveals that he has an ulterior motive for sitting with her. The plane ride is filled with unexpected twists and turns.

I have probably seen this movie over twenty times and while I know the plot very well now, I just can’t stop watching it. It’s over the top sometimes and predictable in certain moments, but the film pulls you in and brings you back to those edge of your seat moments without skipping a beat.

Where to watch: HBO demand

4

Sleeping with the Enemy

Sleeping with the enemy
Image courtesy of STARZ

Released in 1991, this film stars Julia Roberts and Patrick Bergin. Before I had cable TV, this movie was always on as the Saturday night movie on The WB. I used to watch it all the time because I didn’t really have many other options, but I quickly became obsessed. It’s actually one of my mom’s favorite movies and I still think twice about keeping my towels in order. Watch out for that music…

Synopsis: An abused wife fakes her own death and tries to start her life over, but her husband attempts to track her down to make her life a living hell.

Where to watch: STARZ demand

3

A Perfect Getaway

Perfect Getaway
Image courtesy of STARZ

Released in 2009, A Perfect Getaway stars Milla Jovovich and Steve Zahn. This thriller has one of the best twists I have ever witnessed. Sure, I know the twist now, but I still love watching this movie. It has some really great stars in it, including Timothy Olyphant and Chris Hemsworth! Plus, the movie takes place in Hawaii! You can’t get much better than a vacation trip gone wrong when you’re stuck staying at home.

Synopsis: A newly married couple travel on their honeymoon in Hawaii, but quickly realize that they may be hiking with a dangerous threat. Secrets are revealed and their survival is put to the test.

Where to watch: STARZ demand

2

The Call

The Call Halle Berry
Image courtesy of Amazon Prime

Released in 2003, The Call stars Halle Berry and Abigail Breslin. I absolutely adore this movie! I have probably seen it more than all the others on this list and Halle Berry is beyond amazing as 911 operator, Jordan. This movie screams guilty pleasure thriller. It is fast paced and has a shocking ending that will leave you completely satisfied.

Synopsis: After a young woman meets her demise while on the phone with 911, Jordan is traumatized. She sticks to training new 911 operators, but when a similar call comes through from a young woman, she is forced to push her demons aside in order to try and save her before history repeats itself.

Where to watch: Amazon Prime with add on, VUDU, FANDANGONOW

1

Double Jeopardy

Double Jeopardy Movie
Image courtesy of STARZ

Released in 1999, Double Jeopardy stars Ashley Judd and Tommy Lee Jones. This is my go-to movie and probably the one that first got me interested in this guilty pleasure thriller genre. While there are certainly a lot of movies that fall into this category, there’s really nothing like Double Jeopardy. It stands in a class of its own and always will for me.

Synopsis: You can’t be convicted for the same crime twice. Ashley Judd’s character, Libby, eventually learns this when she is wrongfully convicted for the murder of her husband. After being released, she tries to track down her son and starts to learn that she may have been intentionally framed for her crime. Libby decides to get revenge while her parole officer tries to stop her.

Where to watch: STARZ demand

Which guilty pleasure thriller films do YOU enjoy most? 

I hope you enjoyed the list and feel free to post your own thoughts on these movies and your favorites in the comments section below. Thank you so much for reading and happy viewing!

Best,

Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl

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Spoiler-Free Review of “The Stranger” on Netflix: A Complex Thriller Worthy of your next Binge-Watch

**This is a spoiler-free review so feel free to read on!**

“A secret revealed is a secret destroyed.”

The Stranger premiered on Netflix on January 31st 2020 with 8 episodes (40-45 minutes in length).  It stars Richard Armitage, Siobhan Finneran, Anthony Head, Dervla Kirwan, and Hannah John-Kamen.

The show is based on the book of the same name by Harlan Coben.  It is a mystery thriller that follows the lives of several families, as secrets are exposed by a stranger, creating a vortex of lies, murder, and a quest to uncover the truth.

This is not the first crime thriller that Netflix has released, but it’s difficult to deliver some worthy twists without over-complicating things.

If you enjoy movies like The Call, The Girl on the Train, and Gone Girl, this new show will make you feel right at home, but does it do enough to stand out as a worthy thrill ride?  Let’s find out…

The Pros:

The Stranger Netflix 4
Images courtesy of Netflix

The mystery will keep you invested and guessing the entire time.

Adam Price basically has his entire life turned upside down when a stranger approaches him with a shattering secret about his wife.  As we begin to uncover the truth with Adam, you will find yourself on the edge of your seat, which makes the watch entertaining and fast-paced.  Unnecessary set-up does not get in the way, as we dive right into the mystery from the opening minutes of the series.

An amazing cast.

Richard Armitage does a fantastic job with his role, but I was also really impressed by Siobhan Finneran’s portrayal of Johanna Griffin.  Let’s not forget that we also have Buffy the Vampire Slayer alum, Anthony Head playing a supporting role to perfection.  The list goes on and on and every single performance was spot on.

The Cons:

The Stranger Netflix Show 1
Images courtesy of Netflix

Way too many sub-plots.

Yes, this is one of those shows where everything connects.  However, we certainly get a lot thrown our way and some of it seems beyond outrageous.  If you pay attention, a lot of the connections and reveals make sense later on, but some of them are actually never explained, so I’m wondering why we didn’t just focus on the main mystery, which was compelling enough.

It’s easy to get lost in this show and perhaps it is too complex for its own good, but there are enough reasons why you should still watch the show in its entirety anyway.

So am I in or out?

The Stranger Netflix Show 2
Images courtesy of Netflix

I’m in 100 percent!  While the show may be unnecessarily complex at times, it is the epitome of the perfect weekend binge-watch.  You can watch all eight episodes in one sitting and you will probably want to because each episode leaves you wanting more, as you try to figure out the mystery going on.

I tend to thoroughly enjoy mystery thrillers with a touch of Lifetime drama thrown in and this show exceeded my expectations.  While this isn’t the best show or thriller I have ever seen, it delivers as a quick and entertaining show you can watch while throwing in some unexpected twists and moments that will keep you guessing.

Keep these coming, Netflix!

I hope you enjoyed the review and feel free to post your own thoughts and theories on The Stranger in the comments section below.  Thanks so much for reading and happy viewing!

Best,

Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl

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