Films Great Movies About Serial Killers That Are Totally Dramatic  

Ranker Film
325 votes 65 voters 3.3k views 25 items

List Rules Vote up your favorite movies about the hunt for a serial murderer that are less OMG horror, more dramatic thriller.

Murder plus expertly calibrated tension is the perfect recipe for serial killer thrillers. The top dramatic serial killer movies feature cat-and-mouse games between disturbed characters and the people out to put them behind bars. This is a list of the greatest serial killer dramas including everything from Kiss the Girls to The Killer Inside Me to I Saw the Devil.

What films will you find on this list of the best dramatic serial killer movies? The Silence of the Lambs features not one, but two serial killers. The incarcerated Hannibal Lecter is recruited by the FBI to help catch Buffalo Bill before he kills again. Seven is another compelling serial killer movie with a lot of drama. American Psycho finds a New York businessman trading in stocks for slaughters. Other good movies featured on this list include Psycho, Zodiac, and Strangers on a Train.

Do you have a favorite movie about serial killers? Give the best films a thumbs up and please add any great movies that are missing.

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The Silence of the Lambs is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list Great Movies About Serial Killers That Are Totally Dramatic
The Silence of the Lambs Jodie Foster, Anthony Hopkins, Chris Isaak The Silence of the Lambs is a 1991 American thriller film that blends elements of the crime and horror genres. Directed by Jonathan Demme and starring Jodie Foster, Anthony Hopkins, and Scott ...more

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Seven is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list Great Movies About Serial Killers That Are Totally Dramatic
Seven Brad Pitt, Gwyneth Paltrow, Morgan Freeman Seven is a 1995 American psychological thriller film directed by David Fincher. The film stars Brad Pitt and Morgan Freeman, with Gwyneth Paltrow, R. Lee Ermey, John C. McGinley, and Kevin ...more

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Zodiac is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list Great Movies About Serial Killers That Are Totally Dramatic
Zodiac Robert Downey Jr., Jake Gyllenhaal, Mark Ruffalo Zodiac is a 2007 American mystery-thriller film directed by David Fincher and based on Robert Graysmith's non-fiction book of the same name. The Paramount Pictures and Warner Bros. joint ...more

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Psycho is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list Great Movies About Serial Killers That Are Totally Dramatic
Psycho Alfred Hitchcock, Janet Leigh, Anthony Perkins Psycho is a 1960 Psychological thriller and horror film written by Joseph Stefano and directed by Alfred Hitchcock.

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Red Dragon is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list Great Movies About Serial Killers That Are Totally Dramatic
Red Dragon Anthony Hopkins, Ralph Fiennes, Edward Norton Red Dragon is a 2002 American psychological thriller film based on Thomas Harris' novel of the same name, featuring psychiatrist and serial killer Dr. Hannibal Lecter. It is a prequel to The ...more

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Kiss the Girls is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list Great Movies About Serial Killers That Are Totally Dramatic
Kiss the Girls Morgan Freeman, Ashley Judd, Mena Suvari Kiss the Girls is a 1997 American psychological thriller film directed by Gary Fleder and starring Morgan Freeman, Ashley Judd, and Cary Elwes. The screenplay by David Klass is based on the ...more

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American Psycho is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list Great Movies About Serial Killers That Are Totally Dramatic
American Psycho Reese Witherspoon, Christian Bale, Willem Dafoe American Psycho is a 2000 American psychological thriller comedy film co-written and directed by Mary Harron, based on Bret Easton Ellis's 1991 novel of the same name. It stars Christian Bale, ...more

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Hannibal is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list Great Movies About Serial Killers That Are Totally Dramatic
Hannibal Julianne Moore, Gary Oldman, Anthony Hopkins Hannibal is a 2001 American crime thriller film directed by Ridley Scott, adapted from the novel of the same name by Thomas Harris. It is the sequel to the 1991 Academy Award-winning film The ...more

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Mr. Brooks is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list Great Movies About Serial Killers That Are Totally Dramatic
Mr. Brooks Demi Moore, Kevin Costner, Danielle Panabaker Mr. Brooks is a 2007 American psychological thriller film directed by Bruce A. Evans starring Kevin Costner, Demi Moore, Dane Cook, and William Hurt. It was released on June 1, 2007. The film ...more

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Copycat is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list Great Movies About Serial Killers That Are Totally Dramatic
Copycat Sigourney Weaver, Holly Hunter, Harry Connick Copycat is a 1995 American psychological thriller, starring Sigourney Weaver, Holly Hunter and Dermot Mulroney. The film was directed by Jon Amiel, with a score composed by Christopher Young.

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Frailty is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list Great Movies About Serial Killers That Are Totally Dramatic
Frailty Matthew McConaughey, Bill Paxton, Powers Boothe Frailty is a 2002 psychological thriller film, directed by and starring Bill Paxton, and co-starring Matthew McConaughey. It marks Paxton's directorial debut. The plot focuses on the strange ...more

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Confessions is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list Great Movies About Serial Killers That Are Totally Dramatic
Confessions Takako Matsu, Masaki Okada, Ai Hashimoto Confessions is a 2010 Japanese drama film directed by Tetsuya Nakashima, based on housewife-turned-author Kanae Minato's 2008 debut mystery novel that won the 2009 Honya Taisho award.

Co-Stars Who Totally Hated Each Other

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Hannibal Rising is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list Great Movies About Serial Killers That Are Totally Dramatic
Hannibal Rising Gong Li, Kevin McKidd, Rhys Ifans Hannibal Rising is a 2007 horror film and the fifth film of the Hannibal Lecter franchise. It is a prequel to the previous three films: Red Dragon, The Silence of the Lambs, and Hannibal. The ...more

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I Saw the Devil is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list Great Movies About Serial Killers That Are Totally Dramatic
I Saw the Devil Lee Byung-hun, Choi Min-sik, Cheon Ho-Jin I Saw the Devil is a 2010 South Korean psychological thriller/horror film directed by Kim Ji-woon, written by Park Hoon-jung, and starring Choi Min-sik and Lee Byung-hun. The film introduces the ...more

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Manhunter is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list Great Movies About Serial Killers That Are Totally Dramatic
Manhunter Brian Cox, Garcelle Beauvais, Joan Allen Manhunter is a 1986 American crime thriller film based on Thomas Harris' novel Red Dragon. Written and directed by Michael Mann, it stars William Petersen as Will Graham and features Brian Cox ...more

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Dahmer is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list Great Movies About Serial Killers That Are Totally Dramatic
Dahmer Jeremy Renner, Bruce Davison, Dion Basco Dahmer is a 2002 American biopic horror film about the American serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer. Jeremy Renner stars in the title role. There are two timelines in the film: The "present" ...more

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Strangers on a Train is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list Great Movies About Serial Killers That Are Totally Dramatic
Strangers on a Train Alfred Hitchcock, Farley Granger, Leo G. Carroll Strangers on a Train is an American psychological crime thriller film produced and directed by Alfred Hitchcock, and based on the 1950 novel of the same name by Patricia Highsmith. It was shot ...more

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Bundy: An American Icon is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list Great Movies About Serial Killers That Are Totally Dramatic
Bundy: An American Icon Kane Hodder, Corin Nemec, Kristen De Luca Bundy: An American Icon is a 2008 horror film depicting the criminal career of American serial killer, Ted Bundy. It was directed by Michael Fein serial killer biopics, and starred Corin Nemec ...more

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The Chaser is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list Great Movies About Serial Killers That Are Totally Dramatic
vasdim added The Chaser Kim Yoo-jung, Ha Jung-woo, In-gi Jeong The Chaser is a 2008 South Korean film starring Kim Yoon-seok and Ha Jung-woo. It was directed by Na Hong-jin in his directorial debut. Inspired by real-life Korean serial killer Yoo Young-chul, ...more

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Memories of Murder is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list Great Movies About Serial Killers That Are Totally Dramatic
vasdim added Memories of Murder Song Kang-Ho, Park Hae-il, Kim Roi-ha Memories of Murder is a 2003 South Korean crime-drama film directed by Bong Joon-ho. It is based on the true story of the Korea's first serial murder in history, which took place between 1986 ...more

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Sympathy for Lady Vengeance is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list Great Movies About Serial Killers That Are Totally Dramatic
vasdim added Sympathy for Lady Vengeance Lee Young-ae, Song Kang-Ho, Choi Min-sik Sympathy for Lady Vengeance is a 2005 South Korean film by director Park Chan-wook. In North America and parts of Europe, the film has been screened under the title Lady Vengeance. The film is ...more

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Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list Great Movies About Serial Killers That Are Totally Dramatic
vasdim added Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance Bae Doona, Song Kang-Ho, Shin Ha-kyun Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance is a 2002 South Korean film directed by Park Chan-wook which follows the character Ryu trying to earn enough money for his sister's kidney transplant and the path of ...more

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Funny Games is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list Great Movies About Serial Killers That Are Totally Dramatic
Funny Games Naomi Watts, Tim Roth, Michael Pitt Funny Games is a 2007 psychological thriller film written and directed by Michael Haneke, a remake of Haneke's 1997 Austrian film Funny Games. Naomi Watts, Tim Roth, Michael Pitt, and Brady ...more

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Lady Vengeance is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list Great Movies About Serial Killers That Are Totally Dramatic
vasdim added Lady Vengeance

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The Killer Inside Me is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list Great Movies About Serial Killers That Are Totally Dramatic
The Killer Inside Me Jessica Alba, Kate Hudson, Casey Affleck The Killer Inside Me is a 2010 American film adaptation of the 1952 novel of the same name by Jim Thompson. The film is directed by Michael Winterbottom and stars Casey Affleck, Jessica Alba, ...more