1. Memento (2000)
Leonard (Guy Pearce) — an ex- insurance fraud investigator with a head trauma that prevents him from retaining memories — searches for the man who raped and murdered his wife during a burglary; he uses a series of handwritten notes, tattoos, and photographs to guide him. It’s told in reverse.
The twist: Leonard accidentally killed his wife, and was being manipulated into killing criminals by Teddy (Joe Pantoliano). Faced with the grim reality, Leonard chooses instead to ignore it, and tattoos Teddy’s license plate on him — keeping the chase going and making Teddy his next mark.
2. The Prestige (2006)
The set-up: Two bitter rival magicians in early 20th Century London — Robert Angier (Hugh Jackman) and Alfred Borden (Christian Bale) — outwit and confound one another with their teleportation illusions.
The twist: Borden achieves his by the use of a twin brother with whom he shared one life — a secret known to no one, including their shared wife and mistress, each being the love of one brother. Angier, meanwhile, discovers the secret to cloning on a visit to Nikola Tesla’s Colorado laboratories. His illusion drowns a clone once per performance.
3. The Orphanage (2007)
The set-up: A family of three returns to the orphanage where the mother Laura grew up, with the intention of opening it as a home for disabled children. The son, Simon, meets another boy named Tomas who sets him on a scavenger hunt. Simon disappears, and the mother is haunted by a boy in a sack-mask who claims to be Tomas.
The twist: Laura returns to the home months later, where the ghosts of the orphans lead her to the cellar door she had inadvertently shut, trapping him inside.
4. Haute Tension (2005)
The set-up: Friends Marie (Cécile de France) and Alex (Maïwenn Le Besco) spend the weekend at Alex’s family’s house, where a psychotic murderer invades the home and kills the family.
The twist: Marie is the killer, and is in love with Alex.
5: Gone Baby Gone (2007)
The set-up: A young, neglected girl goes missing in a Boston working class area. A private investigator couple (Casey Affleck, Michelle Monaghan) are hired by the child’s aunt to figure out what happened to her.
The twist: The kidnapping was faked by the child’s mother’s boyfriend. Police Capt. Jack Doyle (Morgan Freeman) is actually raising the child, who is alive and well, with his wife. They wanted a child, and figured this was a happy alternative to the girl living with her drug-addict mother.
BY HARSHVARDHAN SINGH.