Sociopaths don’t exist. By that I mean they are empty shells who, chameleon like, morph into a mirror image of their victims. During the initial phase of love-bombing, the sociopath questions the prey and adapts to mimic and complete them. This is called the “idealization” phase – the predator breaks down your defences and inserts himself into your life. In the chilling film The Hand That Rocks The Cradle, sociopath Peyton (Rebecca de Mornay) plays a twist on this theme by morphing into the wife of the man she hopes to seduce: right in front of the wife’s eyes!

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She becomes an essential part of the family’s life and then begins her twisted vengeance on the family whom she blames (with narcissistic rage) for the loss of her husband. This film, like so many films on this list, illustrates that the sociopath is really great fodder for the psychological thriller genre. Here’s a brilliant video analysis of the evil character Amy Dunne.

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