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Top 10 Male Movie Stalkers!

Ever notice or wonder why the most popular obsessive stalker movies feature a psychotic female? Think about it. From FATAL ATTRACTION, SINGLE WHITE FEMALE and THE HAND THAT ROCKS THE CRADLE to MISERY, POISON IVY, THE CRUSH, OBSESSED, etc etc., they all have an unhinged women at the center. Hell, we even dedicated an entire Top 10 to the subject way, way back in the day. And you know what? Now it's the dudes' turn!

Indeed, with THE STRANGERS: PREY AT NIGHT out today - a movie that seemingly reinforces the 2:1 ratio of female to male stalker movies (1 male leader, 2 female minions), we thought why not expose a good swath of these creepy male obsessives. Now, let's be clear, we're not talking slasher-stalkers per se, we're talking about central figures in genre flicks that stalk, obsess over, follow and ultimately confront their subjects. Ah hell, simply scroll below to see what we mean. Get a load of our Top 10 Male Movie Stalkers underneath!

#1. MARK LEWIS (PEEPING TOM)

"He's a Peeping To-om!" Okay okay, so the great Michael Powell movie PEEPING TOM is technically considered, along with Hitch's PSYCHO, the progenitor of the modern day slasher film, but it's also so much more. This handsome charmer Mark Lewis stalks the streets of London looking for prostitutes to savagely murder. But that's just the half of it. As a photographer, Mark is obsessed with capturing expressions of genuine fear. He therefore keeps a knife-blade tucked in his camera tripod, only to pull it and lethally stab unsuspecting women and film their final moments of mortified expressions on camera. Utter madness! And while there's no one particular object of obsession, much like Nolan's FOLLOWING, Mark stalks strangers with stark precision.

#2. MAX CADY (CAPE FEAR)

"Counselahh...Counselahh...come out come out wherever you are!" Let it be known that I was once so bored house-sitting for my folks that I decided to commit this hysterical De Niro monologue to memory. "Silesius 17th century!" Shite's too funny to me. But no laughing matter is Max Cady, the deeply disgruntled ex-con looking to exact meaningful vengeance on the lawyer that put him away. This f*cker pumps iron, reads literature, speaks in tongues, flexes an intellectual inferiority complex, and if that thick southern accent was creepy enough, old Cady is a women-bashing pedophile to boot. There's also a very interesting Biblical reading of the film that would posit that Cady isn't even human to begin with. It's one of Marty's best (and most overlooked) films!

#3. JOHN RYDER (THE HITCHER)

What's cracking Mr. Red? Here were are, in 2018, once again heaping effusive praise on what is easily one of the all time best stalker flicks in THE HITCHER. You did well Eric, you did real well! Indeed, John Ryder (Rutger Hauer) is easily one of the scariest psycho-stalkers to ever grace the screen, particularly in the way he sadistically taunts, pokes, prods, toys with, threatens and chases young Pony Boy, C. Thomas Howell, across a rain-dappled interstate. I mean, when you serve the poor sap who gave you a lift a severed finger in his basket of fries, yeah, that's no way to return a favor. Yet it's oh so delicious! Full disclosure Eric, you scared the ever loving wits out of my mom when she saw THE HITCHER on cable years ago. For that, I thank you!

#4. SY PARRISH (ONE HOUR PHOTO)

This one is heartbreaking. What a testament to the late great Robin Williams' profound performative skill to pretty much emote the full range of human expression in the psychological stalker film ONE HOUR PHOTO. He starts out harmlessly amiable, lonely and likeable, but as his obsession over a family continues to grow - a family he gets to know intimately through the development of their photo albums - once anodyne Sy Parrish turns into a violently unhinged madman who will not leave the family alone. It's a great performance by Williams, who, also in 2002, played an equally off-putting villain in Nolan's INSOMNIA. For all the countless laughs he provided us over the years, Williams' left us with a true gem of a turn in ONE HOUR PHOTO!

#5. STUNTMAN MIKE (DEATH PROOF)

"It's better than safe, it's Death Proof!" At the midway point, we salute a movie that took cues from both ends of the spectrum (#10 & #1), as Tarantino's DEATH PROOF more or less plays as a slashing vehicular manslaughter motion picture. Remember, QT always equated Stuntman Mike's killer car as an extension of his own penis...with the sexual gratification of ramming sexy young girls to death standing in for the act of sex itself. Pretty diabolical shite for this nacho-chomping, teetotaling stalker sumbitch! Of course, all is rectified when Mike rolls up on the wrong crew of ultra-hardened heroines, who chase after his ass and ultimately beat, bash and brain the shite out of him with pipes and bats until he cries to death!

#6. DAVID MCCALL (FEAR)

Fitted firmly in between the time ole Marky Mark was feeling Good Vibrations and when he was swerving a huge fake cock in BOOGIE NIGHTS, the young man was giving poor Reese Witherspoon one hell of a time! Indeed, FEAR proved a dangerously alarming turn from Wahlberg, solidifying his talent as much more than sexy set of abs (Uh, feel it, feel it!) And while Reese is the object of obsession for David McCall, remember how misogynistically he treats Alyssa Milano. Poor gal! Beyond that, it's the domestic terror David brings into the life of Reese's ineffectual dad, played well by William Peterson, that really drives home how sick and twisted David's stalker status has become!

#7. MARTIN BURNEY (SLEEPING WITH THE ENEMY)

Peep the crazy-eyes on this sick bastard! In all honestly, SLEEPING WITH THE ENEMY was a flick I hadn't seen in full until recently. And you know what, it's a decent little thriller, one that features a long-game stalk-job from a flagrantly abusive husband (Patrick Bergin) who goes to great lengths to track down his relocated wife (Julia Roberts). Remember, after being driven to her absolute wit's end, Julia flees her hubby, creates a new identity and assumes a new life far away from her old one. Still doesn't do the job. This creepy Kevin Kline lookalike doggedly tracks her down, subtly cluing her in to his presence, and ultimately shows down with Roberts' hunky new beau in a brilliant perm-mullet. Never before has a cabinet of canned goods been so terrifying!

#8. GORDO (THE GIFT)

Though we can't quite tell at first, Gordo (Joel Edgerton) in THE GIFT may be the most "sympathetic" of all male movie stalkers. Why? Well, turns out he was not only brutally bullied by Simon (Jason Bateman) as a child, in the end, his baleful brand of vengeance wasn't a violently harmful one, but instead a severe psychologically kind. The horrific ambiguity he plants in the mind of Simon in the end - one we can never fully know the answer to - is as unique a form of domestic terror as there's been in cinema. Remember, Simon is left to wickedly wonder if the baby his wife just gave birth to is his own or the illegitimate rape-child of Gordo's. Like the audience, he never gets a true answer!

#9. THE YOUNG MAN (FOLLOWING)

This year marks the 20th anniversary of Chris Nolan's debut film FOLLOWING, the drably surreal fever dream about a Young Man who develops a hankering for literally following total strangers on the seedy streets of London. Shot for a piddly six grand, Nolan established his trademark visual flare in this black and white gem, and even foreshadows his noirish twist-endings he'd later perfect in stuff like MOMENTO and INSOMNIA. Speaking of foreshadowing, notice how a key character here is named Cobb, just as Dicaprio is in INCEPTION. Also, notice the batman sticker in the second flat Bill and Cobb bust into...Nolan of course would go on to helm three DARK KNIGHT pictures.

#10. THE TRUCK DRIVER (DUEL)

Laying the blueprint he'd shock the entire globe with just four years later, Steven Spielberg's DUEL is essentially JAWS with a big-rig! Dennis Weaver plays a poor sap on the wrong end of an extreme case of road rage, as, after pissing off a murderous motorist, must drive for his life away from the loud, smoke-belching 18-wheeler breathing down his neck. It's a fun movie, a different kind of stalker picture, but one that, even for a TV movie, showcases the deft directorial hand Spielberg had even at 25 years old. The framing, the camera work, the intense action set pieces, all of it flash the early brilliance Spielberg would turn accrue as the most successful filmmaker of all time.
Tags: Hollywood

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