Immortal for its shrieking score and contribution to horror, _Psycho_follows the story of Marion. Frustrated with her job and lover she follows a sudden impulse to steal $40,000 and leave town. She encounters a peculiar young innkeeper during a stopover that culminates with an infamous shower scene.
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35mm screening @Pacific Film Archive, 6 August 2016. I really do not like horror films, but I took my teen to see PSYCHO because it is part of the lexicon of cinema. Although I didn't enjoy the story, I can appreciate the style, the way shots are framed, etc. But I don't want to see this film, or most of Hitchcock's films, ever again, unlike some of my favorite films, which I will watch again and again.
Of all the universally praised filmmakers, there isn't a director who I respect less than this guy. I see absolutely nothing in his films of any value :D and they feel so contrived and fake. My most overrated filmmaker to ever live..
One of those films I've watched almost annually since I was 14 or so. It still gets me to shut out the rest of the world and really engage with it to the point where there are new discoveries with each viewing. The denouement scene feels like an appendage to what's otherwise one of the most effective thrillers ever. An experiment in audience identification, beautifully appropriate given Bates' split identity.
Hitchcock's decision to shoot in black and white lends the film a sense of intimate voyeurism, and the mise-en-scene is incredibly detailed. The scene of Vera Miles scavenging through the Bates' home is one of the greatest in film history. Also, Janet Leigh might be the first person to ever say "I'll lick the stamps" as a term of endearment.
Yep, I do have to watch this again. Because, unlike... everyone I know, I don't really like Psycho that much. And I want to understand if it's because the film is so good that it makes me unconfortable, or because I just don't identify with what it's about.
The first 45 minutes is perfect and almost surprisingly humane for Hitchcock as he avoids characterising Norman Bates as a complete psychopath. I felt sorry for him as he was talking to Janet Leigh. Everything was so good. And then, Hitchcock realised he needed it to be longer so he padded it out with WHO GIVES A SHIT characters and plot twists that even blind man could see coming. It's so mundane and boring.
Some Hitchcock films (N by NW, Rear Window, Rich & Strange) wax with new delights with each subsequent reviewing, but even those that have somewhat faded (for me) with long exposure have such intense 'spots of time' that grow the more mysterious the more familiar they become: what is it about Vera Miles searching the three floors of the Bates home that keeps me in such thrall, the spell only growing the more potent?
"Desire" list. The most experimental film of Hitchcock - together with The Birds - and that starts in the most intoxicating way that a movie could begin - as Welles' "Touch of Evil", which in fact could be the title of this film and vice versa - is also the film that, if we exclude Sirk's "Imitation of LIfe", finally delivers to heartthrob/hunk John Gavin a role that would identify him in the universe of characters.