Based on Bret Easton Ellis’ controversial novel, American Psycho is a film that dares you to watch it. Taking place in New York City in 1987, this is the story of Patrick Bateman, a Wall Street player and status whore, who dedicates his time to a lifestyle of material gain. “I have all the characteristics of a human being,” he warns us in voice-over narration, “but not a single clear identifiable emotion, except for greed and disgust”. His contempt for society takes on a murderous form, as the bodies pile up beside his designer sheets. Christian Bale, in a star-making turn as Bateman, is a Calvin Klein poster-boy with a nail gun behind his back and the velvet voice of Satan’s DJ. Director Mary Harron has assembled a stellar cast, drawing strong performances from Willem Dafoe, Reese Witherspoon, Chloe Sevigny and Samantha Mathis. Equally horrifying and hilarious. American Psycho is Fight Club’s bastard first cousin, an assault on the senses that leaves you mesmerized. –MIFF
Canadian writer and director Mary Harron first made an impact on the world of American independent cinema with her 1996 feature directorial debut I Shot Andy Warhol. The widely acclaimed film, which detailed the short, strange life of S.C.U.M Manifesto author Valerie Solanas, earned both an Independent Spirit Award nomination for Best Film and a Special Jury Award for star Lili Taylor at the 1996 Sundance Festival.
The daughter of celebrated Canadian actor Don Harron, she was educated at Oxford University and began her career as a rock journalist. One of the founders of Punk magazine, the first publication dedicated solely to punk rock, Harron was the first writer to interview the Sex Pistols for an American publication. She also worked for a number of British publications, including New Musical Express, for which she wrote a history of the Velvet Underground, and Melody Maker, for which she wrote a detailed history of Andy Warhol and the Factory.
Harron began her film… read more
Most psychopathic individuals do not engage in violent behaviour so the title in itself is quite misleading. However, Bale embodies sex appeal and narcissim in his role. The fact that he is not unlike his contemporaries in his workplace is in itself a reflection upon the superficial values of Americans who are wealthy and materialistic.
In a voiceover, Patrick informs us that “There is no real me. I simply am not there.” He sees himself as a facade – a perfectly sculpted body encompassing a black hole where his soul and conscience… read review
This movie will always be a nice comment on yuppies and the 80’s in general. Thank god we have the ‘american psycho’ we know today, and not what almost became the cocaine induced Oliver Stone adaptation… read review
An amazing adaption from one of my favorite Bret Easton Ellis novels. It showed about as much as it could, while retaining as much story as possible. Christian Bale was the perfect choice for Patrick… read review