Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Psycho (1960)

Actors: Anthony Perkins, Janet Leigh, Vera Miles
Dir: Sir Alfred Hitchcock

Psycho is acclaimed as one of the best Suspense / thriller / horror movies of all time. It is based on a novel by Robert Bloch. Critics rate this as one of the most effective horror movies ever. Movie buffs, critics and film makers still talk highly about the famous “shower murder” scene in the film. Another reason why the “shower murder” sequence is thrilling is because of Bernard Herrmann’s superb background score.

This film is around the Multiple Personality Disorder (MPD) aka. Split personality disorder. That is, a person carrying dual personalities in his mind. This disorder makes a person act like two different personalities at times and the person also suffers a memory loss. While the affected person doesn’t know that there are two personalities in him or what the other personality does to him. At the end the dominant of the personalities win resulting in the person losing his own identity or even death of the person.

Marion Crane embezzles $40,000 from her office. She does this to help her struggling boyfriend, Sam (without his knowledge though) and get him marry her soon. While decamping with the cash and on her way to her boyfriend's place she is faced with heavy rains. She decides to stop for the night a nearby motel, at a deserted road which used to be a highway. The owner of the place Norman Bates claims to be living there with his aged mother all alone. She hears the mother telling Norman to keep away from strange women. In a bizarre turn of events Marion is murdered while she is in the shower of her room. It seems that Norman’s mother is the murderer, Norman like a dutiful son clears up the murder scene and wipes of the remains by drowning them in a nearby swamp.

Arbogast, a private detective hired by Marion’s employer also faces the same fate when he goes in search of Norman’s mother to have a word with her about Marion’s disappearance. Fortunately Arbogast speaks to Marion’s sister Lila just before he is murdered about his suspicion on Norman and his mother. Sam and Lila approach the local sheriff for help. The sheriff laughs off at the complaint saying Norman’s mother had died years ago, commiting suicide and Norman was all alone.

Sam & Lila embark on finding the truth. After the usual Hitchcockian moments it is revealed that Norman is suffering from MPD. He takes his mothers identity to kill people who get close to Norman’s identity. And Norman thinks the murders have been committed by his mother and destroys evidence to save her.

An amazing movie and a must watch for all thriller / horror movie lovers.

Trivia: Sir Alfred appears four minutes in to the film. As Marion comes back to her office after meeting her lover Sir Alfred is seen behind the glass door of Marion’s office, wearing a cowboy hat

1 comment:

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