The Internet at the Speed of Thought

A Psychiatrist Ranked the Most and Least Believable Psychopaths in Film

at2:29 pm | By

Fact vs. Fiction

Humans have long been fascinated with the most troubled and dangerous among us.

Especially with the rise of art made for the masses both in print and on film, macabre tales of death and murder became a staple of storytelling. What may have well started as sensationalism with the first penny dreadfuls soon worked its way into even the most acclaimed literature of the Victorian era, shortly thereafter coming to life in moving pictures. Today, stories of murder are everywhere, from the news we watch to the countless channels and podcasts dedicated to true crime and innumerable movies about bloodthirsty murderers.

But how real are these depictions? Why this obsession with the most banal aspects of our humanity? And just how well do even the most notorious murderers from fiction reflect real-life pathology? That’s exactly what one psychiatrist decided to find out.

Often, movies depict crazed killers as brilliant criminals, masterminds capable of fooling law enforcement and civilians to pursue their bloodlust. But personality disorders that lead to psychopathy in the real world are often much more subtle. Which of your favorite characters make the cut?

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Credit: Orion Pictures