Not my favorite Hitchcock film but definitely a must-see for any thriller fans or budding cinephiles. There are moments in this one that are truly remarkable and stand out, even within his body of work. I instantly go to the final sequence or the famous shower sequence examples.
Think about it, he basically laid down the blueprint for 99 percent of all horror movies made with this and The Birds. Crazy homicidal maniac, and crazy stuff happening for no real understood reason (which is probably the more terrifying of the two)
As much as I don't think Psycho's scares hold up tremendously well by today's standard, (though its direction and soundtrack will always be timeless), it's boundary pushing concept and invention of both the slasher film and the psychological horror genre make this a truly iconic piece of cinema.
The first 45 minutes are a total masterpiece, right up to That Shower Scene which somehow still manages to be so intense and shocking all these years later. This part is all A+! And then the 2nd half is pretty much a different movie, solidly entertaining, creepy, and cool but not quite amazing. This part gets a B. It's tough to rate this one as a whole but I'm going B+.
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.