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Pi (1998)
Drama, Horror, Mystery, Sci-fi, Thriller

Pi (1998)

Max is a genius mathematician who's built a supercomputer at home that provides something that can be understood as a key for understanding all existence. Representatives both from a Hasidic cabalistic sect and high-powered Wall Street firm hear of that secret and attempt to seduce him.

Themes:nature,  madness,  surveillance,  insanity,  paranoia,  obsession,  conspiracy,  religion,  drugs,  surrealism
Locations:beach
Characters:jew,  photographer,  singer
Story:mathematician,  torah,  stock market,  human brain,  game of go,  board game,  hasidic jew,  orthodox jew,  riding a subway,  bathroom sink,  financial conspiracy,  computer crash,  computer chip,  breaking a mirror,  broken mirror,  character's point of view camera shot,  reference to archimedes,  chinese checkers,  apocryphal story,  nautilus shell,  tree of knowledge,  reference to pythagoras,  burning paper,  reference to icarus,  number 44,  ark of the covenant,  mathematical equation,  golden ratio,  symbol for title,  home aquarium,  beachcomber,  electric drill,  phrenology,  yom kippur,  chinatown manhattan new york city,  chaos theory,  pi,  paranoid schizophrenia,  intuition,  numerology,  reference to leonardo da vinci,  talmud,  spiral,  garden of eden,  calculator,  reference to the ten commandments,  coney island brooklyn new york city,  numbers,  geometry,  purity,  door lock,  trail of blood,  kabbalah,  migraine,  savant,  seashell,  pattern,  lynchian,  atonement,  human experimentation,  snorricam,  crutch,  extreme close up,  hebrew,  eyes,  chinese american,  headache,  schizophrenic,  tai chi,  repeated line,  metal detector,  actual animal killed,  code,  microscope,  coincidence,  kite,  ant,  landlady,  stroke,  rabbi,  mathematics,  journal,  mysticism,  hair,  judaism,  madman,  shaved head,  genius,  brain,  alienation,  briefcase,  loner,  evidence,  sun,  delusion,  bloody nose,  grocery store,  pills,  telescope,  brooklyn new york city,  nosebleed,  self mutilation,  supermarket,  game,  directorial debut,  injection,  liar,  key,  coffee,  teacher student relationship,  darkness,  fish,  subway,  newspaper,  manhattan new york city,  science,  prayer,  neighbor,  bathroom,  low budget film,  avant garde,  reference to god,  lie,  vomiting,  camera,  computer,  punched in the face,  mirror,  song,  voice over narration,  telephone call,  cult film,  chase,  new york city,  singing,  title spoken by character,  cigarette smoking,  independent film,  bare chested male,  one word title,  blood,  death,  gun

The Believer (2001)
Drama

The Believer (2001)

"The Believer" explores a Jewish student's private journey to understand the meaning of Judaism in his life. Set in New York City, the Plot follows a morally confused young adult struggling with the conflict between his beliefs and his heritage. "The Believer" examines themes of religion, family, and self-loathing. It is a psychological examination into the forces of intolerance, both on the individual and society as a whole. (Read More)

Themes:paranoia,  religion
Characters:jew
Story:orthodox jew,  yom kippur,  talmud,  torah,  hebrew,  rabbi,  judaism,  subway,  reference to god,  vomiting,  computer,  punched in the face,  new york city,  independent film,  gun,  death,  blood

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Oldeuboi (2003)
Action, Drama, Mystery, Thriller

Oldeuboi (2003)

Abducted on a rainy night in 1988, the obnoxious drunk, Oh Dae-Su, much to his surprise, wakes up locked in a windowless and dilapidated hotel room, for an unknown reason. There, his invisible and pitiless captors will feed him, clothe him and sedate him to avoid committing suicide, and as his only companion and a window to the world is the TV in his stark cell, the only thing that helps Oh Dae-Su keep going is his daily journal. But then, unexpectedly, after fifteen long years in captivity, the perplexed prisoner is deliberately released, encouraged to track down his tormentor to finally get his retribution. Nevertheless, who would hate Oh Dae-Su so much he would deny him of a quick and clean death? (Read More)

Themes:madness,  surveillance,  insanity,  conspiracy
Characters:singer
Story:character's point of view camera shot,  ant,  journal,  bloody nose,  self mutilation,  game,  injection,  subway,  newspaper,  manhattan new york city,  prayer,  bathroom,  vomiting,  camera,  computer,  song,  voice over narration,  telephone call,  cult film,  chase,  new york city,  singing,  title spoken by character,  cigarette smoking,  one word title,  death,  blood

Jacob's Ladder (1990)
Drama, Horror, Mystery

Jacob's Ladder (1990)

New York postal worker Jacob Singer is trying to keep his frayed life from unraveling. His days are increasingly being invaded by flashbacks to his first marriage, his now-dead son, and his tour of duty in Vietnam. Although his new wife tries to help Jacob keep his grip on sanity, the line between reality and delusion is steadily growing more and more uncertain. (Read More)

Themes:paranoia,  conspiracy
Characters:singer
Story:riding a subway,  lynchian,  human experimentation,  snorricam,  delusion,  self mutilation,  subway,  vomiting,  cult film,  chase,  new york city,  independent film,  death,  blood

A Beautiful Mind (2001) is one of the best movies like Pi (1998)
Biography, Drama

A Beautiful Mind (2001)

From the heights of notoriety to the depths of depravity, John Forbes Nash, Jr. experienced it all. A mathematical genius, he made an astonishing discovery early in his career and stood on the brink of international acclaim. But the handsome and arrogant Nash soon found himself on a painful and harrowing journey of self-discovery. After many years of struggle, he eventually triumphed over his tragedy, and finally - late in life - received the Nobel Prize. (Read More)

Themes:paranoia,  conspiracy
Characters:photographer
Story:mathematics,  game of go,  breaking a mirror,  broken mirror,  paranoid schizophrenia,  mathematician,  schizophrenic,  genius,  loner,  delusion,  self mutilation,  camera,  punched in the face,  cult film,  chase,  blood

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The Beach (2000)
Adventure, Drama, Romance, Thriller

The Beach (2000)

Garland's novel centers on a young nicotine-addicted traveler named Richard, an avid pop-culture buff with a particular love for video games and Vietnam War movies. While at a hotel in Bangkok, he finds a map left by his strange, whacked-out neighbor, who just committed suicide. The map supposedly leads to a legendary island paradise where some other wayward souls have settled. This is why The Beach (2000) is one of the best movies like Pi (1998). (Read More)

Themes:insanity,  drugs
Locations:beach
Characters:photographer
Story:trail of blood,  delusion,  fish,  neighbor,  lie,  vomiting,  camera,  computer,  voice over narration,  telephone call,  chase,  title spoken by character,  bare chested male,  blood,  death,  gun

Shallow Grave (1994)
Crime, Thriller

Shallow Grave (1994)

The new flatmate of three preexisting roommates turns up mysteriously dead but in possession of a large sum of money. When the roommates decide to keep it for themselves, their action sets in motion a destructive chain of events that spiral out of control.

Themes:madness,  insanity
Story:spiral,  briefcase,  directorial debut,  liar,  key,  newspaper,  lie,  camera,  computer,  punched in the face,  voice over narration,  independent film,  blood,  death

Gifted (2017)
Drama

Gifted (2017)

Frank Adler (Chris Evans) is a single man raising a child prodigy - his spirited young niece Mary (Mckenna Grace) in a coastal town in Florida. Frank's plans for a normal school life for Mary are foiled when the seven-year-old's mathematical abilities come to the attention of Frank's formidable mother Evelyn (Lindsay Duncan) whose plans for her granddaughter threaten to separate Frank and Mary. Octavia Spencer plays Roberta, Frank and Mary's landlady and best friend. Jenny Slate is Mary's teacher, Bonnie, a young woman whose concern for her student develops into a connection with her uncle as well. (Read More)

Themes:obsession
Locations:beach
Characters:singer
Story:mathematical equation,  calculator,  seashell,  mathematician,  landlady,  mathematics,  genius,  neighbor,  reference to god,  computer,  mirror,  song,  singing,  title spoken by character,  one word title,  death

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A Serious Man (2009) is one of the best movies like Pi (1998)
Comedy, Drama

A Serious Man (2009)

Bloomington, Minnesota, 1967: Jewish physics lecturer Larry Gopnik is a serious and a very put-upon man. His daughter is stealing from him to save up for a nose job, his pot-head son, who gets stoned at his own bar-mitzvah, only wants him round to fix the TV aerial and his useless brother Arthur is an unwelcome house guest. But both Arthur and Larry get turfed out into a motel when Larry's wife Judy, who wants a divorce, moves her lover, Sy, into the house and even after Sy's death in a car crash they are still there. With lawyers' bills mounting for his divorce, Arthur's criminal court appearances and a land feud with a neighbour Larry is tempted to take the bribe offered by a student to give him an illegal exam pass mark. And the rabbis he visits for advice only dole out platitudes. Still God moves in mysterious - and not always pleasant - ways, as Larry and his family will find out. (Read More)

Themes:paranoia,  religion,  drugs,  surrealism
Locations:beach
Characters:jew,  singer
Story:orthodox jew,  mathematical equation,  kabbalah,  torah,  mathematician,  hebrew,  rabbi,  mathematics,  mysticism,  coffee,  teacher student relationship,  neighbor,  bathroom,  reference to god,  song,  telephone call,  chase,  singing,  title spoken by character,  cigarette smoking,  blood,  death

Maniac (2012)
Horror

Maniac (2012)

Just when the streets seemed safe, a serial killer with a fetish for scalps is back and on the hunt. Frank is the withdrawn owner of a mannequin store, but his life changes when young artist Anna appears asking for his help with her new exhibition. As their friendship develops and Frank's obsession escalates, it becomes clear that she has unleashed a long-repressed compulsion to stalk and kill. (Read More)

Themes:insanity,  obsession
Characters:photographer
Story:breaking a mirror,  broken mirror,  migraine,  schizophrenic,  pills,  subway,  neighbor,  bathroom,  vomiting,  camera,  computer,  one word title,  blood,  death

Deception (2008)
Crime, Drama, Mystery, Thriller

Deception (2008)

Cat and mouse. Jonathan McQuarry is an auditor in Manhattan, moving from office to office checking their books. While working late, a smooth and well-dressed man named Wyatt Bose chats Jonathan up, offers him a joint, and soon they're pals. When their cell phones are accidentally swapped, Jonathan answers Wyatt's phone to a series of women asking if he's free tonight. Jonathan discovers it's a sex club: busy powerful people meet each other anonymously in hotels. Jonathan falls for one of the club members, whom he knows only as "S," whom he's also seen on a subway. When she goes missing, patterns emerge and Jonathan faces demands involving violence and lots of money. This is why Deception (2008) is one of the best movies like Pi (1998). (Read More)

Characters:singer
Story:chinatown manhattan new york city,  briefcase,  delusion,  liar,  subway,  lie,  computer,  punched in the face,  mirror,  song,  voice over narration,  telephone call,  new york city,  singing,  cigarette smoking,  one word title,  death,  gun,  blood

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Hollow Man (2000)
Action, Horror, Sci-fi, Thriller

Hollow Man (2000)

Having discovered they could turn animals invisible, a group of scientists test the subject on a human. Head of research, Dr. Sebastian Caine decides to use himself as the subject. After the experiment can't be reversed, it takes a toll on Caine's personality, causing him to hunt down and kill his colleagues (Read More)

Themes:madness,  surveillance,  insanity,  paranoia,  nature,  surrealism
Story:human experimentation,  genius,  injection,  science,  bathroom,  reference to god,  vomiting,  computer,  punched in the face,  mirror,  telephone call,  cult film,  chase,  bare chested male,  gun,  blood,  death

Big Eyes (2014) is one of the best movies like Pi (1998)
Biography, Crime, Drama, Romance

Big Eyes (2014)

In San Francisco in the 1950s, Margaret was a woman trying to make it on her own after leaving her husband with only her daughter and her paintings. She meets gregarious ladies' man and fellow painter Walter Keane in a park while she was struggling to make an impact with her drawings of children with big eyes. The two quickly become a pair with outgoing Walter selling their paintings and quiet Margaret holed up at home painting even more children with big eyes. But Walter's actually selling her paintings as his own. A clash of financial success and critical failure soon sends Margaret reeling in her life of lies. With Walter still living the high life, Margaret's going to have to try making it on her own again and re-claiming her name and her paintings. (Read More)

Themes:insanity
Locations:beach
Characters:photographer
Story:numerology,  reference to leonardo da vinci,  eyes,  delusion,  grocery store,  supermarket,  liar,  key,  newspaper,  reference to god,  lie,  camera,  mirror,  voice over narration,  telephone call,  new york city,  title spoken by character,  cigarette smoking

La Science Des Reves (2006)
Comedy, Drama, Fantasy, Romance

La Science Des Reves (2006)

Following the death of his father in Mexico, Stephane Miroux, a shy insecure young man, agrees to come to Paris to draw closer to his widowed mother Christine. He lands a boring job at a calendar-making firm and falls in love with his charming neighbor Stephanie. But conquering her is no bed of roses for the young man and the only solution he finds to put up with the difficulties he is going through is escape into a dream world... (Read More)

Themes:surrealism
Characters:singer
Story:character's point of view camera shot,  electric drill,  schizophrenic,  landlady,  brain,  briefcase,  science,  neighbor,  low budget film,  lie,  mirror,  song,  voice over narration,  telephone call,  singing,  cigarette smoking,  independent film,  death,  blood

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Gomorra (2008)
Crime, Drama

Gomorra (2008)

"Gomorra" is a contemporary Neapolitan mob drama that exposes Italy's criminal underbelly by telling five stories of individuals who think they can make their own compact with Camorra, the area's Mafia.

Themes:paranoia,  drugs
Locations:beach
Characters:photographer,  singer
Story:tai chi,  grocery store,  fish,  manhattan new york city,  camera,  computer,  mirror,  song,  chase,  new york city,  singing,  cigarette smoking,  bare chested male,  one word title,  gun,  blood,  death

New York, I Love You (2008)
Comedy, Drama, Romance

New York, I Love You (2008)

Eleven vignettes, all homages to New York City life, are presented. I. Ben, a pickpocket, is attracted to Molly on first sight, and gets into an interesting "pissing match" with Molly's married lover, NYU professor Garry. II. Mansuhkhbai, an orthodox Jain diamond wholesaler, and Rifka, an orthodox Jewish diamond retailer who is getting married tomorrow, learn that they have more in common than just diamonds. III. David, a musician and music editor for a video being directed by Abarra, is having problems meeting Abarra's demands while he slowly falls for Abarra's assistant, Camille, who he's never met but has only talked to on the telephone solely about work. IV. A young man believes he's made a powerful connection to a stranger, a young woman, in the simple act of lighting her cigarette, and proceeds to convince her of the same and as such that there is a future for them from that point on, and not at some unspecified time down the road. V. A high school senior, who has been dumped by his girlfriend just before senior prom, is given a gift by his local pharmacist, Mr. Riccoli, the senior not understanding the full implication of the gift until the full process of prom night is over. VI. Each on their way to their first official date together after what started out solely as a one night stand, Gus and Lydia each contemplate not keeping the date. VII. Isabelle, a retired opera diva, has returned to a hotel where she's stayed many times and where she has strong memories of encounters with a young bellhop. VIII. In brown skinned Dante and white skinned young adolescent Teya spending time together in a park, most outsiders see a manny and his charge, not realizing the true nature of Dante and Teya's relationship. IX. In questioning why one of her elderly Eastern European customers chose her as the wanted subject for his next painting, a young Chinese herbalist may be inspired to create some art of her own. X. Anna, who meets Alex by chance on the street each going about their individual business, asks him a question, she having an ulterior motive while expecting a totally different reaction from him contrary to her motive... maybe. XI. Abe and Mitzie are spending their 63rd wedding anniversary together, not always harmoniously. Interspersed between these eleven vignettes are even shorter ones, often tying together to another or to one of the eleven primary ones in some manner. This is why New York, I Love You (2008) is one of the best movies like Pi (1998). (Read More)

Themes:nature
Locations:beach
Characters:jew,  photographer,  singer
Story:chinatown manhattan new york city,  coney island brooklyn new york city,  chinese american,  metal detector,  rabbi,  hair,  shaved head,  sun,  brooklyn new york city,  nosebleed,  subway,  manhattan new york city,  camera,  computer,  mirror,  song,  voice over narration,  telephone call,  new york city,  singing,  cigarette smoking,  bare chested male,  blood,  death

Proof (2005) is one of the best movies like Pi (1998)
Drama, Mystery

Proof (2005)

The daughter of a brilliant but mentally disturbed mathematician (recently deceased) tries to come to grips with her possible inheritance: his insanity. Complicating matters are one of her father's ex-students who wants to search through his papers and her estranged sister who shows up to help settle his affairs. (Read More)

Themes:insanity,  paranoia
Story:mathematician,  numbers,  mathematics,  journal,  genius,  teacher student relationship,  science,  telephone call,  new york city,  title spoken by character,  one word title,  death

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Scanners (1981)
Horror, Sci-fi, Thriller

Scanners (1981)

Darryl Revok is the most powerful of all the scanners, and is the head of the underground scanner movement for world domination. Scanners have great psychic power, strong enough to control minds; they can inflict enormous pain/damage on their victims. Doctor Paul Ruth finds a scanner that Revok hasn't, and converts him to their cause - to destroy the underground movement. (Read More)

Themes:surveillance,  conspiracy,  surrealism
Story:character's point of view camera shot,  schizophrenic,  nosebleed,  self mutilation,  injection,  subway,  computer,  telephone call,  cult film,  chase,  title spoken by character,  cigarette smoking,  independent film,  bare chested male,  one word title,  blood,  death

Before I Go To Sleep (2014)
Drama, Mystery, Thriller

Before I Go To Sleep (2014)

Forty-year-old Christine Lucas wakes up in bed with a man she does not know, in an unfamiliar house. The man explains that he is her husband, Ben, and that she suffered brain damage from a car accident ten years earlier. Christine wakes up every morning with no memory of her life from her early twenties onwards. Christine receives treatment from Dr. Nasch, a neurologist at a local hospital who provides her a camera to record her thoughts and progress each day, and calls her every morning to remind her to watch the video in the camera. Soon, she starts to discover the truth around her. (Read More)

Themes:paranoia
Story:brain,  character's point of view camera shot,  camera,  repeated line,  evidence,  bloody nose,  nosebleed,  injection,  liar,  key,  bathroom,  lie,  punched in the face,  mirror,  telephone call,  chase,  cigarette smoking,  independent film,  blood

Kill Your Darlings (2013)
Biography, Drama, Romance, Thriller

Kill Your Darlings (2013)

In the early 1940s, Allen Ginsberg is an English major at Columbia University, only to learn more than he bargained for. Dissatisfied by the orthodox attitudes of the school, Allen finds himself drawn to iconoclastic colleagues like Lucien Carr, William S. Burroughs and Jack Kerouac. Together, this gang would explore bold new literary ideas that would challenge the sensibilities of their time as the future Beat Generation. However, for all their creativity, their very appetites and choices lead to more serious transgressions that would mark their lives forever. (Read More)

Themes:paranoia,  obsession,  drugs
Characters:jew,  singer
Story:injection,  key,  teacher student relationship,  subway,  manhattan new york city,  reference to god,  mirror,  song,  voice over narration,  telephone call,  chase,  new york city,  singing,  title spoken by character,  cigarette smoking,  bare chested male,  blood

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21 Grams (2003) is one of the best movies like Pi (1998)
Crime, Drama, Thriller

21 Grams (2003)

This is the story of three well-meaning but flawed people: Paul Rivers, an ailing mathematician lovelessly married to an English emigre; Christina Peck, an upper-middle-class suburban housewife, happily married homemaker with two young daughters, with hiding a secret past; and Jack Jordan, an ex-convict who has found in his Christian faith the strength to live a law-abiding life and raise a family. They will be brought together by a terrible accident that will change their lives. By the final frame, none of them will be the same as they will have learnt harsh truths about love, faith, courage, desire and guilt, and how chance can change our worlds irretrievably, forever. This is why 21 Grams (2003) is one of the best movies like Pi (1998). (Read More)

Themes:religion,  drugs
Story:mathematician,  schizophrenic,  mathematics,  evidence,  pills,  prayer,  bathroom,  reference to god,  vomiting,  computer,  voice over narration,  telephone call,  singing,  cigarette smoking,  independent film,  gun,  death,  blood

Enter The Void (2009)
Drama, Fantasy

Enter The Void (2009)

Tokyo's nasty underside, seen primarily through the eyes of Oscar, a heavy drug user, whose sister Linda is a stripper. Oscar also has flashbacks to his childhood when trauma upends the siblings. Oscar's drug-fed hallucinations alter Tokyo's already-disconcerting nights, and after the police shoot him, he can float above and look down: on his sister's sorrow, on the rooms of a love hotel, and on life at even a molecular level. The spectrum's colors can be beautiful; it's people's colorless lives that can be ugly. And what of afterlife, is there more than a void? (Read More)

Themes:paranoia,  drugs,  surrealism
Locations:beach
Characters:jew,  singer
Story:character's point of view camera shot,  door lock,  eyes,  pills,  bathroom,  punched in the face,  mirror,  song,  telephone call,  cult film,  chase,  singing,  cigarette smoking,  bare chested male,  blood,  death,  gun

Southland Tales (2006)
Comedy, Mystery, Sci-fi, Thriller

Southland Tales (2006)

Southland Tales is an ensemble piece set in the futuristic landscape of Los Angeles on July 4, 2008, as it stands on the brink of social, economic and environmental disaster. Boxer Santaros is an action star who's stricken with amnesia. His life intertwines with Krysta Now, an adult film star developing her own reality television project, and Ronald Taverner, a Hermosa Beach police officer who holds the key to a vast conspiracy. (Read More)

Themes:surveillance,  paranoia,  conspiracy,  drugs,  surrealism
Locations:beach
Characters:singer
Story:character's point of view camera shot,  paranoid schizophrenia,  lynchian,  telescope,  injection,  key,  science,  vomiting,  computer,  punched in the face,  mirror,  song,  voice over narration,  telephone call,  cult film,  chase,  singing,  cigarette smoking,  independent film,  bare chested male,  death,  blood,  gun

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High-rise (2015)
Drama

High-rise (2015)

Class struggle becomes all too real as a young doctor moves into a modern apartment block in suburban 1975 London. Drugs, drink & debauchery dissolve into murder, mayhem and misogyny in this pseudo-post-apocalyptic breakdown of societal norms.

Themes:insanity,  paranoia,  drugs,  surrealism
Story:character's point of view camera shot,  briefcase,  supermarket,  injection,  coffee,  reference to god,  lie,  punched in the face,  mirror,  voice over narration,  title spoken by character,  cigarette smoking,  bare chested male,  blood,  gun

Cube (1997) is one of the best movies like Pi (1998)
Drama, Mystery, Sci-fi, Thriller

Cube (1997)

Six different people, each from a very different walk of life, awaken to find themselves inside a giant cube with thousands of possible rooms. Each has a skill that becomes clear when they must band together to get out: a cop, a math whiz, a building designer, a doctor, an escape master, and a disabled man. Each plays a part in their thrilling quest to find answers as to why they've been imprisoned. (Read More)

Themes:insanity,  paranoia,  surrealism
Story:character's point of view camera shot,  numbers,  savant,  mathematician,  extreme close up,  mathematics,  directorial debut,  low budget film,  punched in the face,  cult film,  title spoken by character,  independent film,  one word title,  blood,  death

The Unborn (2009)
Drama, Horror, Mystery, Thriller

The Unborn (2009)

While babysitting a boy and his baby brother, Casey Beldon has a dreadful nightmare involving a weird dog and an evil child, and she tells her best friend Romy over the phone. Casey is haunted by this boy, and when she goes to the ophthalmologist, he asks if she has a twin brother or sister. She asks her father and discovers that her mother lost a son that died in the womb. Casey suspects that she is haunted by the spirit of her brother. She finds a letter addressed to a woman called Sofi Kozma and a creepy picture at home that belonged to her mother. She goes with Romy to a retirement home to meet Sofi, a survivor of the experiments during the Holocaust. But Sofi tells Casey that she had never met her mother and later calls Casey to tell her she is in great danger. This is why The Unborn (2009) is one of the best movies like Pi (1998). (Read More)

Story:broken mirror,  kabbalah,  human experimentation,  hebrew,  rabbi,  injection,  subway,  prayer,  vomiting,  punched in the face,  mirror,  telephone call,  chase,  title spoken by character,  bare chested male,  death,  blood

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Morgan (2016)
Action, Horror, Sci-fi, Thriller

Morgan (2016)

Themes:surveillance,  paranoia,  conspiracy
Story:directorial debut,  injection,  science,  camera,  computer,  punched in the face,  mirror,  chase,  title spoken by character,  bare chested male,  independent film,  one word title,  blood,  death

The Butterfly Effect (2004)
Sci-fi, Thriller

The Butterfly Effect (2004)

Evan Treborn grows up in a small town with his single, working mother and his friends. He suffers from memory blackouts where he suddenly finds himself somewhere else, confused. Evan's friends and mother hardly believe him, thinking he makes it up just to get out of trouble. As Evan grows up he has fewer of these blackouts until he seems to have recovered. Since the age of seven he has written a diary of his blackout moments so he can remember what happens. One day at college he starts to read one of his old diaries, and suddenly a flashback hits him like a brick! (Read More)

Themes:insanity,  paranoia,  religion,  surrealism
Story:human brain,  chaos theory,  journal,  brain,  nosebleed,  self mutilation,  reference to god,  vomiting,  telephone call,  cult film,  cigarette smoking,  bare chested male,  gun,  blood,  death

The Interpreter (2005) is one of the best movies like Pi (1998)
Crime, Mystery, Thriller

The Interpreter (2005)

Escalating events begin when U.N. interpreter Silvia Broome alleges that she has overheard a death threat against an African head of state, spoken in a rare dialect few people other than Silvia can understand. With the words "The Teacher will never leave this room alive," in an instant, Silvia's life is turned upside down as she becomes a hunted target of the killers. Placed under the protection of federal agent Tobin Keller, Silvia's world only grows more nightmarish. As Keller digs deeper into his eyewitnesses' past and her secretive world of global connections, the more suspicious he becomes that she herself might be involved in the conspiracy. With every step of the way, he finds more reasons to mistrust her. Is Sylvia a victim? A suspect? Or something else entirely? And can Tobin, coping with his own personal heartache, keep her safe? Though they must depend on one another, Silvia and Tobin couldn't be more different. Silvia's strengths are words, diplomacy and the subtleties of meaning, while Tobin is all about instinct, action and reading into the most primal human behaviors. Now, as the danger of a major assassination on U.S. soil grows and Silvia's life hangs in the balance, Silvia and Tobin play out a gripping dance of evasion and revelation that keeps them both guessing as they race to stop a terrifying international crisis before it's too late. (Read More)

Themes:surveillance,  conspiracy
Characters:photographer
Story:door lock,  metal detector,  coincidence,  brooklyn new york city,  liar,  key,  subway,  manhattan new york city,  lie,  camera,  computer,  telephone call,  chase,  new york city,  title spoken by character,  death,  gun,  blood

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The Midnight Meat Train (2008)
Horror, Mystery

The Midnight Meat Train (2008)

The photographer Leon lives with his girlfriend and waitress Maya waiting for a chance to get in the photo business. When Maya contacts their friend Jurgis, he schedules a meeting for Leon with the successful owner of arts gallery Susan Hoff; she analyzes Leon's work and asks him to improve the quality of his photos. During the night, the upset Leon decides to wander on the streets taking pictures with his camera, and he follows three punks down to the subway station; when the gang attacks a young woman, Leon defends her and the guys move on. On the next morning, Leon discovers that the woman is missing. He goes to the police station, but Detective Lynn Hadley does not give much attention to him and discredits his statement. Leon becomes obsessed to find what happened with the stranger and he watches the subway station. When he sees the elegant butcher Mahogany in the train, Leon believes he might be a murderer and stalks him everywhere, in the beginning of his journey to the darkness. (Read More)

Themes:obsession
Characters:photographer
Story:character's point of view camera shot,  trail of blood,  briefcase,  self mutilation,  darkness,  subway,  camera,  punched in the face,  mirror,  chase,  death,  blood

A Scanner Darkly (2006)
Animation, Crime, Drama, Mystery, Sci-fi, Thriller

A Scanner Darkly (2006)

In a totalitarian society in a near future, the undercover detective Bob Archor is working with a small time group of drug users trying to reach the big distributors of a brain-damaging drug called Substance D. His assignment is promoted by the recovery center New Path Corporation, and when Bob begins to lose his own identity and have schizophrenic behavior, he is submitted to tests to check his mental conditions. This is why A Scanner Darkly (2006) is one of the best movies like Pi (1998). (Read More)

Themes:surveillance,  paranoia,  conspiracy,  drugs,  surrealism
Story:character's point of view camera shot,  schizophrenic,  code,  brain,  pills,  bathroom,  vomiting,  voice over narration,  cult film,  title spoken by character,  cigarette smoking,  bare chested male,  blood,  death

Hesher (2010)
Comedy, Drama

Hesher (2010)

T.J., a high school freshman, lost his mother two months before in a car accident: his father pops pills and sits on the couch; his grandmother holds things together, chatting and cooking. T.J. wants the car back from the salvage yard where the owner's son is a bully. By happenstance, Hesher, a foul-mouthed squatter, moves in with T.J's family. T.J. also meets Nicole, a grocery clerk near poverty who helps him once. Hesher involves T.J. in crime, the bully is omnipresent, mom's car is slipping away, dad has checked out, T.J. watches Nicole at work, and his grandma invites him to join her morning walk: the odds are long that T.J. can assemble a family to help him thrive. (Read More)

Characters:singer
Story:hair,  loner,  bloody nose,  grocery store,  pills,  directorial debut,  liar,  lie,  vomiting,  punched in the face,  song,  telephone call,  chase,  singing,  cigarette smoking,  bare chested male,  one word title,  death,  blood

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We Need To Talk About Kevin (2011) is one of the best movies like Pi (1998)
Drama, Mystery, Thriller

We Need To Talk About Kevin (2011)

Eva Khatchadourian is trying to piece together her life following the "incident". Once a successful travel writer, she is forced to take whatever job comes her way, which of late is as a clerk in a travel agency. She lives a solitary life as people who know about her situation openly shun her, even to the point of violent actions toward her. She, in turn, fosters that solitary life because of the incident, the aftermath of which has turned her into a meek and scared woman. That incident involved her son Kevin Khatchadourian, who is now approaching his eighteenth birthday. Eva and Kevin have always had a troubled relationship, even when he was an infant. Whatever troubles he saw, Franklin, Eva's complacent husband, just attributed it to Kevin being a typical boy. The incident may be seen by both Kevin and Eva as his ultimate act in defiance against his mother. (Read More)

Themes:insanity,  paranoia
Characters:singer
Story:extreme close up,  ant,  alienation,  grocery store,  pills,  supermarket,  liar,  lie,  vomiting,  computer,  mirror,  song,  telephone call,  new york city,  singing,  bare chested male,  death,  blood

American Psycho (2000)
Crime, Drama

American Psycho (2000)

Patrick Bateman is handsome, well educated and intelligent. He is twenty-seven and living his own American dream. He works by day on Wall Street, earning a fortune to complement the one he was born with. At night he descends into madness, as he experiments with fear and violence.

Themes:madness,  insanity,  paranoia,  drugs
Story:journal,  madman,  alienation,  briefcase,  telescope,  brooklyn new york city,  manhattan new york city,  camera,  mirror,  voice over narration,  cult film,  chase,  new york city,  cigarette smoking,  independent film,  bare chested male,  gun,  death,  blood

Gods And Monsters (1998)
Biography, Drama

Gods And Monsters (1998)

The story of 'James Whale (I)' (qv), the Director of _Frankenstein (1931)_ (qv) and _Bride of Frankenstein (1935)_ (qv), in the time period following the Korean War. Whale was homosexual, and develops a friendship with his gardener, an ex-Marine.

Locations:beach
Characters:photographer,  singer
Story:headache,  stroke,  brain,  newspaper,  bathroom,  camera,  mirror,  song,  telephone call,  singing,  title spoken by character,  cigarette smoking,  independent film,  bare chested male,  death

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The Rules Of Attraction (2002)
Comedy, Drama, Romance

The Rules Of Attraction (2002)

Camden College. Sean Bateman is the younger brother of depraved Wall Street broker Patrick Bateman. He's also a drug dealer who owes a lot of money to "fellow" dealer Rupert Guest, as well as a well-known womanizer, for he sleeps with nearly half of the female population on campus. Lauren Hynde is, technically, a virgin. She's saving herself for her shallow boyfriend, Victor Johnson, who's left the States to backpack across Europe. Her slutty roommate, Lara, has the hots for Victor as well. Paul Denton, who used to date Lauren, is openly bisexual and attracted to Mitchell Allen, who's dating Candice to prove to Paul that he's not gay. Sean loves Lauren. Paul loves Sean. And Lauren may love Sean. This is why The Rules Of Attraction (2002) is one of the best movies like Pi (1998). (Read More)

Themes:drugs
Characters:singer
Story:character's point of view camera shot,  eyes,  repeated line,  bloody nose,  pills,  bathroom,  vomiting,  computer,  punched in the face,  mirror,  song,  voice over narration,  telephone call,  cult film,  singing,  cigarette smoking,  independent film,  death,  gun,  blood

2 Days In Paris (2007) is one of the best movies like Pi (1998)
Comedy, Drama, Romance

2 Days In Paris (2007)

2 Jours - 2 Days follows two days in the relationship of a New York based couple - a French photographer Marion and American interior designer Jack - as they attempt to re-infuse their relationship with romance by taking a vacation in Europe. Their trip to Venice didn't really work out, - they both came down with gastroenteritis. They have higher hopes for Paris. But the combination of Marion's overbearing non-English-speaking parents, flirtatious ex-boyfriends, and Jack's obsession with photographing every famous Parisian tombstone and conviction that French condoms are too small, only adds fuel to the fire. Will they be able to salvage their relationship? Will they ever have sex again? Or will they merely manage to perfect the art of arguing? (Read More)

Themes:paranoia,  obsession
Characters:jew,  photographer
Story:headache,  ant,  liar,  subway,  lie,  camera,  computer,  voice over narration,  new york city,  title spoken by character,  cigarette smoking

The Basketball Diaries (1995)
Biography, Crime, Drama, Sport

The Basketball Diaries (1995)

Film adaptation of street tough Jim Carroll's epistle about his kaleidoscopic free fall into the harrowing world of drug addiction. As a member of a seemingly unbeatable high school basketball squad, Jim's life centers around the basketball court and the court becomes a metaphor for the world in his mind. A best friend who is dying of leukemia, a coach ("Swifty") who takes unacceptable liberties with the boys on his team, teenage sexual angst, and an unhealthy appetite for heroin -- all of these begin to encroach on young Jim's dream of becoming a basketball star. Soon, the dark streets of New York become a refuge from his mother's mounting concern for her son. He can't go home and his only escape from the reality of the streets is heroin for which he steals, robs and prostitutes himself. Only with the help of Reggie, an older neighborhood friend with whom Jim "picked up a game" now and then, is he able to begin the long journey back to sanity. (Read More)

Themes:religion,  drugs
Story:journal,  bloody nose,  pills,  nosebleed,  game,  injection,  key,  manhattan new york city,  prayer,  neighbor,  bathroom,  vomiting,  voice over narration,  telephone call,  chase,  new york city,  cigarette smoking,  independent film,  death,  blood,  gun

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K-pax (2001)
Drama, Sci-fi

K-pax (2001)

Themes:paranoia
Story:savant,  sun,  delusion,  telescope,  manhattan new york city,  science,  computer,  cult film,  new york city,  title spoken by character,  independent film,  blood,  death

Lovelace (2013)
Biography, Drama

Lovelace (2013)

Locations:beach
Characters:photographer,  singer
Story:pills,  coffee,  prayer,  reference to god,  camera,  song,  telephone call,  chase,  new york city,  singing,  title spoken by character,  cigarette smoking,  bare chested male,  one word title,  gun,  blood,  death

Paranoia (2013) is one of the best movies like Pi (1998)
Drama, Thriller

Paranoia (2013)

The high stakes thriller Paranoia takes us deep behind the scenes of global success to a deadly world of greed and deception. The two most powerful tech billionaires in the world ('Harrison Ford (I)' (qv) and 'Gary Oldman (I)' (qv)) are bitter rivals with a complicated past who will stop at nothing to destroy each other. A young superstar ('Liam Hemsworth' (qv)), seduced by unlimited wealth and power falls between them, and becomes trapped in the middle of the twists and turns of their life-and-death game of corporate espionage. By the time he realizes his life is in danger, he is in far too deep and knows far too much for them to let him walk away. This is why Paranoia (2013) is one of the best movies like Pi (1998). (Read More)

Themes:surveillance,  paranoia,  conspiracy
Story:metal detector,  brooklyn new york city,  game,  subway,  manhattan new york city,  voice over narration,  chase,  new york city,  cigarette smoking,  bare chested male,  independent film,  one word title,  blood,  death

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Don't Say A Word (2001)
Drama, Mystery, Thriller

Don't Say A Word (2001)

A group of thieves steal a rare gem, but in the process, two of the men double cross the leader of the thieving group, Patrick, and take off with the precious stone. Ten years later, prominent psychiatrist Nathan Conrad is invited to examine a disturbed young woman named Elisabeth. Patrick immediately kidnaps Nathan's daughter, forcing Nathan to attempt to get Elisabeth to reveal a secret number which will ultimately lead Patrick to the whereabouts of the precious gem that has eluded him. (Read More)

Themes:surveillance,  insanity,  paranoia
Characters:photographer
Story:schizophrenic,  brooklyn new york city,  injection,  subway,  manhattan new york city,  vomiting,  camera,  punched in the face,  chase,  new york city,  singing,  title spoken by character,  cigarette smoking,  blood,  death

Conviction (2010)
Biography, Drama

Conviction (2010)

Betty Anne Waters (Swank) is a high school dropout who spent nearly two decades working as a single mother while putting herself through law school, tirelessly trying to beat the system and overturn her brother's (Rockwell) unjust murder conviction.

Themes:obsession
Characters:photographer
Story:evidence,  supermarket,  liar,  prayer,  neighbor,  lie,  camera,  computer,  punched in the face,  mirror,  telephone call,  cigarette smoking,  bare chested male,  one word title,  death,  blood,  gun

Gattaca (1997)
Drama, Sci-fi, Thriller

Gattaca (1997)

In the not-too-distant future, a less-than-perfect man wants to travel to the stars. Society has categorized Vincent Freeman as less than suitable given his genetic make-up and he has become one of the underclass of humans that are only useful for menial jobs. To move ahead, he assumes the identity of Jerome Morrow, a perfect genetic specimen who is a paraplegic as a result of a car accident. With professional advice, Vincent learns to deceive DNA and urine sample testing. Just when he is finally scheduled for a space mission, his program director is killed and the police begin an investigation, jeopardizing his secret. (Read More)

Themes:surveillance,  paranoia,  religion
Locations:beach
Story:character's point of view camera shot,  microscope,  hair,  telescope,  self mutilation,  injection,  reference to god,  vomiting,  computer,  punched in the face,  voice over narration,  cult film,  title spoken by character,  cigarette smoking,  bare chested male,  one word title,  blood,  death

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Abre Los Ojos (1997) is one of the best movies like Pi (1998)
Drama, Mystery, Romance, Sci-fi, Thriller

Abre Los Ojos (1997)

A once handsome playboy, Cesar finds himself in a mental facility and he can't remember why. All he can remember is meeting the love of his life for one day, and then getting into a car accident which left his face horribly disfigured. But the pain of becoming physically undesirable may help him to find the truth. (Read More)

Themes:paranoia,  surrealism
Story:character's point of view camera shot,  lynchian,  eyes,  pills,  reference to god,  vomiting,  computer,  voice over narration,  gun,  death,  blood

Persepolis (2007)
Animation, Biography, Drama, War

Persepolis (2007)

In 1970s Iran, Marjane 'Marji' Statrapi watches events through her young eyes and her idealistic family of a long dream being fulfilled of the hated Shah's defeat in the Iranian Revolution of 1979. However as Marji grows up, she witnesses first hand how the new Iran, now ruled by Islamic fundamentalists, has become a repressive tyranny on its own. With Marji dangerously refusing to remain silent at this injustice, her parents send her abroad to Vienna to study for a better life. However, this change proves an equally difficult trial with the young woman finding herself in a different culture loaded with abrasive characters and profound disappointments that deeply trouble her. Even when she returns home, Marji finds that both she and homeland have changed too much and the young woman and her loving family must decide where she truly belongs. This is why Persepolis (2007) is one of the best movies like Pi (1998). (Read More)

Themes:religion,  surrealism
Story:eyes,  grocery store,  pills,  supermarket,  liar,  key,  fish,  newspaper,  prayer,  neighbor,  reference to god,  lie,  vomiting,  voice over narration,  telephone call,  chase,  cigarette smoking,  one word title,  death,  blood

Ghost Dog: The Way Of The Samurai (1999)
Action, Crime, Drama, Thriller

Ghost Dog: The Way Of The Samurai (1999)

A hitman who lives by the code of the samurai, works for the mafia and finds himself in their crosshairs when his recent job doesn't go according to plan. Now he must find a way to defend himself and his honor while retaining the code he lives by.

Story:code,  character's point of view camera shot,  mysticism,  briefcase,  loner,  telescope,  brooklyn new york city,  key,  bathroom,  voice over narration,  cigarette smoking,  independent film,  death,  gun,  blood

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The Tailor Of Panama (2001)
Comedy, Drama, Thriller

The Tailor Of Panama (2001)

John LeCarre's spy thriller is brought to the big screen. A British spy is banished to Panama after having an affair with an ambassador's mistress. Once there he makes connection with a local tailor with a criminal past and connections to all of the top political and gangster figures in Panama. The tailor also has a wife, who works for the canal administrator, and a huge debt. The spy's mission is to learn what the President intends to do with the Panama Canal, but he's really in business for himself, blackmailing the tailor into spinning a fantastic tale about the canal being sold to China and former mercenaries ready to topple the current government. (Read More)

Characters:jew,  singer
Story:liar,  newspaper,  neighbor,  lie,  camera,  computer,  mirror,  song,  telephone call,  chase,  singing,  cigarette smoking,  death,  blood

Janghwa, Hongryeon (2003) is one of the best movies like Pi (1998)
Drama, Horror, Mystery, Thriller

Janghwa, Hongryeon (2003)

Two sisters who, after spending time in a mental institution, return to the home of their father and cruel stepmother. Once there, in addition to dealing with their stepmother's obsessive and unbalanced ways, an interfering ghost also affects their recovery.

Themes:insanity,  paranoia,  obsession,  conspiracy,  surrealism
Story:delusion,  coffee,  newspaper,  lie,  mirror,  cult film,  cigarette smoking,  blood,  death

The Pink Panther (2006)
Adventure, Comedy, Crime, Family, Mystery

The Pink Panther (2006)

When the coach of the France soccer team is killed by a poisoned dart in the stadium in the end of a game, and his expensive and huge ring with the diamond Pink Panther disappears, the ambitious Chief Insp. Dreyfus assigns the worst police inspector Jacques Clouseau to the case. His intention is to give a diversion to the press, while he uses his best men to chase the killer and thief. He assigns Gendarme Gilbert Ponton to work with Clouseau and inform each step of the investigation. When Clouseau is nominated with honor to the highest prize in France, Dreyfus decides to humiliate Clouseau and take him out of the case. However Clouseau has already solved the mystery. (Read More)

Themes:surveillance
Characters:photographer,  singer
Story:metal detector,  game,  newspaper,  bathroom,  camera,  computer,  punched in the face,  song,  cult film,  chase,  new york city,  singing,  title spoken by character,  gun,  death

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(Poster artwork courtesy of TheMovieDB.org)