7 Anxiety Inducing Films Where Not Even The Protagonist Knows What’s Happening

7 Anxiety Inducing Films Where Not Even The Protagonist Knows What’s Happening

Avatar of Diego Cera

By: Diego Cera

April 3, 2017

Movies 7 Anxiety Inducing Films Where Not Even The Protagonist Knows What’s Happening
Avatar of Diego Cera

By: Diego Cera

April 3, 2017

Uncertainty is that dark shadow lurking behind each decision we make. For some, it’s a screen that keeps them from seeing beyond what they can easily perceive. In the summer of 1978, a group of Soviet geologists found a family who had hid themselves in the Siberian taiga since 1936. They’d been unaware of the Second World War as well as other changes in the world. Their isolation, led by religious persecution, had driven them to exist on a completely different reality.

We might never experience the state of unease the family felt when they were presented with different technological advances. However, several filmmakers have made us feel unexplainable anxiety through complex plots and the way the protagonist tries to survive them.

Memento (2000)
Christopher Nolan

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The phrase “Living day to day” would never mean the same after Leonard Shelby began his days with a blank mind. Obsessed with finding his wife, his only ally is a small video camera that works as a surrogate for his brain, and a tattoo machine.

Mr. Nobody (2009)
Jaco Van Dormael 

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Our destiny is based on every choice we make. There are several paths, but do they ultimately lead to the same place? What would happen if we had the chance to know all the different outcomes to every choice we make?

The Aura
Fabián Bielinsky

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The chance of all your darkest desires coming true is barely likely to happen. It’s only natural to distrust your senses if they start to occur. This is the premise of this Argentinean film, where the protagonist imagines several scenarios for perfect crimes that soon show up on the news.

Before I Go to Sleep (2014)
Rowan Joffé

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After a tragic accident, the main character of this film loses all her memories. She sets out to try and fulfill her lifelong goals. However, she starts to realize she’s done it all, leaving her rethinking her life purpose.

Pi (1998)
Darren Aronofsky

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When a mathematician unwittingly finds a number able to reveal all the secrets of the universe, a religious group begins to persecute him. What the character is unaware of is that he has discovered the name of God which, according to Judeo-Christian tradition, must never be spoken or written, since it could bring the end of the world.

Enter the Void
Gaspar Noé

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What happens when we die? While many are sure that there’s no such thing as life after death, this film presents a horrific vision of afterlife, where the greatest torture is being unaware of one’s own demise.

Donnie Darko
Richard Kelly

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Imagine the horror of not being able to trust your own mind, to the point where you’re not able to differentiate between sanity and madness. This film’s protagonist lives in constant fear for the end of the world.

After watching these movies, you’ll find yourself questioning the ways of the world. Just make sure your mind is not left a mess trying to figure out how these characters’ lives can make any sense.

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Translated by María Suárez