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Thrill death do us part From whodunits to terrifying thrillers, we look at perfect plots that kept us guessing

Audrey Kane compiles a mixture of television and film that kept us guessing until the end... and sometimes beyond

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ln her latest thriller, Nine Perfect Strangers, Nicole Kidman plays Masha, the Russian-born owner of a deluxe spa called Tranquillum.

ln her latest thriller, Nine Perfect Strangers, Nicole Kidman plays Masha, the Russian-born owner of a deluxe spa called Tranquillum.

ln her latest thriller, Nine Perfect Strangers, Nicole Kidman plays Masha, the Russian-born owner of a deluxe spa called Tranquillum.

Top ten of thrillers.

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1. NINE PERFECT STRANGERS

If you can overlook Nicole Kidman swanning around like Lord of the Rings' Gandalf, this eight-part thriller on Amazon Prime is actually quite good. Based on Liane Moriarty's bestseller, it centres around nine weary city dwellers who travel to a wellness retreat run by eccentric guru Masha Dmitrichenko (Kidman).

While Masha and her sketchy Russian accent are supposed to be the big draw, the real winner is Melissa McCarthy, playing failing author Frances, who delivers dialogue gold. When asked why she is there she responds: "You know, a little bit of my-career-is-over kind of thing, a bit of menopause, mix in a little bad relationship and a dash of crippling shame."

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2. THE RETREAT

A slow psychological horror movie with themes of madness - sure what's not to like? It follows a lesbian couple, Renee and Valerie, who are at a crossroads in their relationship whey they decide to spend the week at a remote cabin with friends, only to find themselves targeted by murderous psychos instead. Full of thrills, spills and girl power, this survivalist slasher available on-demand will satisfy the gore-hungry viewer.

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3. GONE FOR GOOD

Based on a Harlan Coben book, this Netflix gem opens with a murder and a 10-year time jump. It starts in Nice in 2010 as we meet the main protagonist, Guillaume Lucches (Finnegan Oldfield), a social worker who has lost his brother and his ex-girlfriend. The series then unravels itself through its investigation of each character's past - all armed with a back-story or tragedy that makes them who they are.

It's a classic mystery riddled with unforeseen twists that gets darker and creepier as it evolves. If you liked Gone Girl, this is the binge-watch for you.

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4.  THE WHITE LOTUS

There are countless reasons to love this sumptuous six-part HBO satire set at the exclusive White Lotus spa in Hawaii - but at the top it has to be the resort's manager, Armond, played by Australian actor Murray Bartlett - a recovering addict whose sobriety is tested by his stressful job on a daily basis.

The series opens with an ending as newlywed Shane (Jake Lacy), sans his starry-eyed wife Rachel (Alexandra Daddario), waits to board a flight back home as a box containing human remains is loaded onto the plane. Someone has died, but who?

We then go back to the beginning and are introduced to the selfish characters living in a bubble of privilege as they arrive at the idyllic holiday resort. It's a great cast, including Tanya (Jennifer Coolidge) - but it's Armond's epic battle throughout the series with the spoiled, whiny, man-child Shane that steals the show.

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5. CLICKBAIT

Found on Netflix, this social-media-age whodunit features a different character in each of its eight thrilling instalments. It centres around family man Nick Brewer (Adrian Grenier) who is kidnapped by an unseen abductor, making him hold up cards that claim he abuses women. When the video receives five million views, Nick will be executed.

It has plenty of Black Mirror vibes, but nowhere near the same league. Nonetheless, the slow burner holds its own with dark humour making it worth a watch.

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6. BIG LITTLE LIES

Another smart take on the whodunit classic, the first episode of this HBO hit kicks off with a murder but doesn't reveal the identities of the deceased or his/her killer.

The top-tier cast includes Nicole Kidman, who plays Celeste, a woman in a deeply twisted, frequently violent relationship with her husband Perry (Alexander Skarsgård). Meryl Streep joins season two as Mary Louise, a drab and slightly terrifying mother in search of answers.

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thriller

thriller

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7. BEHIND HER EYES

Netflix's six-episode psychosexual thriller, starring our very own Eve Hewson, has one of the more surreal WTF-endings you'll ever see - we're talking twist with a capital 'T'.

The initial plot may seem cliché and you might even think it's a bit slow and predictable but, believe us, it's neither. Absolutely bonkers, yes, but it's also an over-the-top nail-biter of a mini-series.

Based on Sarah Pinborough's 2017 bestseller of the same name, it follows the story of Louise, played by Simona Brown, a single mother who has a one-night stand only to discover that he is her new boss, David, played by the delicious Tom Bateman. Louise's new friend Adele, played by Eve Hewson, also happens to be David's wife - awkward.

Cue nightmarish dream sequences and cryptic conversation. You may think you're watching a glossy whodunit but you're in for a spine-tingling surprise.

8. THE FALL

WHEN psychological murder drama The Fall dropped in 2013, we were obsessed. Jamie Dornan plays dark, twisted and (sexy) serial killer Paul Spector, while Gillian Anderson is the detective (Stella Gibson) brought in to oversee the investigation into his crimes.

Unlike a lot of other thrillers on the list, from the very first episode, the audience is aware of the identity of the killer, giving us three fabulous seasons of cat-and-mouse. It found a whole new fanbase during the pandemic and Anderson recently hinted at a fourth season, saying "discussions" were taking place. That might just give us enough time to upgrade the home security system before watching.

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9. SHARP OBJECTS

This Missouri-set murder mystery has a mix of everything.

Murder — check. Intense family dynamics — check. Complex protagonist in the form of Amy Adams — checkmate.

Adams plays Camille Preaker, a jaded alcoholic journalist assigned to cover murders in her sleepy hometown, while reluctantly confronting her past and fearsome mother (Patricia Clarkson).

It’s mean, moody and an intoxicating feminist take on TV crime.

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10. TWIN PEAKS

It's the show that started it all and, after two seasons and almost 31 years later, we still haven't a clue what went on in David Lynch's Twin Peaks.

Starring Kyle MacLachlan as Dale Cooper, an FBI agent investigating the murder of homecoming queen Laura Palmer in the titular Washington town, both creepy and memorable, it influenced countless other shows over the years.

But it was lover of a good cup of coffee, Special Agent Cooper's dialogue that was the highlight of the show for the die-hard fans. "Never drink coffee that has been anywhere near a fish" is life advice that still rings true.

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