Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Written by: Joseph Stefano
Weapon of Choice: Knife
Rish Outfield's reviews
This is the most influential horror movie ever. Care to argue?
You probably already know the story. Marion Crane (Janet Leigh) steals some money, fleeing on her own across California. When she stops at the Bates Motel, she meets Norman (Anthony Perkins), a kindly young man tormented by his overbearing mother, watching over him from their house on the hill. When Marion takes a shower in the motel bathroom, she gets a very unwelcome visitor.
Psycho is considered Alfred Hitchcock's masterpiece, and the father of modern Horror. The film is overflowing with style and grace and could be studied endlessly. And of course, it has been. It is a fascinating tale with some very suspenseful moments, but in viewing it for the site, I found it less satisfying than I used to.
Tony Perkins is so great, delivering his likable, layered, tortured performance that, unfortunately, he was never able to escape from it. I never want them to catch Norman Bates, and neither do you, and that's Hitchcock's brilliance--even knowing who/what Norman is, I still like him.
This movie taught me that birds actually do eat a great deal, so when somebody tells you that you eat like a bird, you must kill them.
Of course, the years have diluted the shockingness of this piece, and I can only imagine the controversy that surrounded it when it was first released, but it's still intelligent, well-acted, and amazingly orchestrated. It's got nice pacing, a great score, some very disturbing sequences (still), and a nice ending ("she wouldn't hurt a fly").
Best Scare: Well, duh, the shower scene.
I'd Recommend It To: Everybody needs to see Psycho. But NOT the awful 1998 remake.
The tyranist's thoughts
I love Alfred Hitchcock, but I didn't see Psycho for many years. When I finally did see it, I knew almost everything about it. I regret that. Seeing it through new eyes would have been fantastic. In spite of my foreknowledge, it was still one of the finest movies that I have ever seen. Norman is so pathetic and Marion is so desireable in spite of her shortcomings. This film is a must see for any horror fan and should probably be seen by everyone.
|Owes everything to/rips off earlier film|
|Girl unnecessarily gets naked|
|Death associated with sex|
|Characters forget about threat|
|Power is cut|
|Phone lines are cut|
|Someone investigates a strange noise|
|Someone runs up stairs instead of going out front door|
|Camera is the killer|
|Victims cower in front of a window/door|
|Toilet stall scene|
|Victim locks self in with killer|
|Killer is in car with victim|
|Cat jumps out|
|Blood hits camera|
|Killer doesn't stay dead|
|Stupid discovery of corpse|
|Victim running from killer inexplicably falls|
|No one believes only witness|
|Poor death effect|
|Music detracts from scene|
|Horror film showing on TV/in theater in movie|
|Future celebrity appears|
|No one dies at all|
|Death in first five minutes|
|Little kid lamely survives|
|Dog/Pet miraculously survives|
|Villain is more sympathetic than heroes|
|"It was all a dream" ending|
|Unbelievably happy ending|
|What the hell?|
Total Skulls: 4
Other movies in this series:
Psycho IV: The Beginning