Find the best dark movies to watch, from our mood category. Like everything on agoodmovietowatch, these dark movies are highly-rated by both viewers and critics.
Mr. Lazarescu is a widower living with his cats in a small Bucharest apartment. One night when he begins to feel sick and calls for help, he sets in motion a kafkaesque parade of nurses, doctors, and hospitals as he is ferried through a bureaucratic maze unable to get treatment for his rapidly deteriorating condition. Cristi Puiu’s searing indictment of a failed healthcare system mixes kitchen-sink realism with tinges of gallows humor for a remarkable one-of-a-kind experience.
Beneath its grim demeanor is a clear-eyed portrait of the heart-rending weariness of paramedics and hospital staff that speaks spectacularly to our current mid-pandemic moment of exhausted doctors and overflowing facilities. This focus on the toll of the system on paramedics, in particular, makes this a fantastic pairing with Martin Scorcese’s’ underrated Bringing Out the Dead.
In The Sun, a family of four is dealt with tragedy after tragedy, beginning with the younger sun A-ho's sudden incarceration. The mother is sympathetic but the father all but shuns him as he chooses to throw all his affection to A-hao, the older brother, and his med school pursuits instead. Themes of crime, punishment, family, and redemption are then explored in gorgeous frames and mesmerizing colors with director Chung Mong-hong doubling as the film's cinematographer.
Despite itself, The Sun never falls into cliche melodrama territory. Its heavy themes are undercut by naturalistic acting and poetic shots, resulting in a deeply emotional but balanced film. Rich in meaning and beauty, The Sun will surely stay with you long after your first watch.
16th century Korea—the small kingdom is governed by a royal family, but the sudden death of the king causes a power struggle among the elite, which in turn opens the window for either genuine change or further corrupt rule. At the heart of this is Crown Prince Lee Chang (Ju Ji-hoon), who conspires with the rebel scholars to bring his corrupt rivals down.
This all sounds familiar, if not a bit trite, but before you can start to pin it down, Kingdom quickly morphs into something more than just a period drama. The introduction of fantasy, terror, and neverending gore elevates Kingdom into a multi-genre feat—an impressive blend of political intrigue and pure zombie horror that never fails to keep you at the edge of your seat.
A crazy, anxiety-inducing thriller that turns Adam Sandler into a thrill-generating machine, which in its own speaks volumes about the rhythm of this movie. It follows a jeweler who gets himself in trouble with what feels like all of New York - a gang, Kevin Garnett (the NBA player), other jewelers, his family, odd twins that appear out of nowhere - everyone. This all happens in the backdrop of him feeling he has “hit big” and is on the verge of receiving a lot of money.
If you watched Good Time, you know what to expect from directors Safdie brothers: excruciating tension that keeps building up when you thought it wasn’t possible. And that might be the only problem with Uncut Gems; the tension doesn't feel that different from Good Time, and having watched one you can guess where the other one is going.
From Mike Flanagan, creator of The Haunting anthology, comes Midnight Mass, a miniseries that is just as gory, unsettling, and supernaturally twisted as any Flanagan horror flick. The series follows an ex-convict who returns to his small town just upon the arrival of a mysterious but alluring priest. As inexplicable events start to happen, the townsfolk hang onto the churchman's words, seeking reassurance where they can.
With lots to say about religious fanaticism and perpetual grief, Midnight Mass is part of a new wave of layered and thoughtful scary stories currently dominating the genre. While its stately and meditative pace can be overbearing sometimes, it never runs out of things to shock and unnerve the soul.
1899 is for viewers who love twisty big-budgeted shows in the vein of HBO's Westworld and Amazon Prime's Peripheral. It’s set in the titled year and follows migrants from all walks of life as they set sail for New York, the land of opportunity. There’s a priest from Spain, a couple from France, and a performer from China, all aboard a ship run by Danish sailors and a German captain. It’s a multilingual feat, but the twisty part arrives when they stop to help a steamship that’s been stranded for months. One horrific, mind-bending event follows another as they race to solve the mystery within the ship.
1899 comes from the creators of Dark, the German sci-fi hit that won critical acclaim for its originality and craftsmanship.
From The Babadook director Jennifer Kent comes another horror, although this one is more about the horrors of humanity. Set in 1825 Tasmania, The Nightingale follows Irish settler Clare as she seeks bloody revenge on the monsters who wronged her and her family. She teams up with an Aboriginal guide named Billy to accomplish her goal.
Because of its often violent and disturbing tone (the film is rated R for its potentially triggering scenes), The Nightingale understandably polarized audiences upon its release. But it's also an excellent conversation piece, best watched with friends or anyone up for a discussion-filled movie night.
This Danish thriller is about a man who gets into a car accident with a woman and, upon visiting her at the hospital, gets mistaken for her boyfriend by her wealthy family.
The man in question is Jonas, a family guy with two cheerful children who is also going through a text-book case of mid-life crisis. So when he realizes that Julia lost her memory and that she shows interest in him, he steps into the role of her boyfriend.
Things escalate very quickly, both as Julia starts to get some of her memory back and her actual boyfriend arrives. If you like Scandinavian noirs like Headhunters, you will love this.