The unreliable narrator

True to its name, an unreliable narrator is a narrative device in which the person conveying the story provides information to the audience that cannot be fully trusted. There are various reasons why a narrator might do this— personal biases, behavioral characteristics, intentions to deceive, or a limited perspective. This makes the audience question the accuracy and truthfulness of the narrator’s account.

But why do filmmakers employ such a technique? Well, there are several reasons to it.

This way they can engage the viewer in the story, add depth to a character, create a sense of intrigue and anticipation, or they can simply use it as a plot device.

Let’s examine several examples of movies where the director has used an unreliable narrator and is successful in doing so.

Firstly, let’s consider “Gone Girl.” In this movie, dual narration between a husband and wife presents differing accounts of events. This approach engages the audience in the storyline, leaving them pondering over the question of who is truly telling the truth.

Similarly, in the movie “Fight Club” The narrator gives a distorted view of events, leaving the audience perplexed about the reality, which eventually culminates in a surprising revelation of the character’s true identity.