By: Ahmed Almatrook (A Toast) –
When talking about Hitchcock flicks, no matter which one of his movies is being discussed, I always have to mention Psycho. Why not? Psycho defines horror in my opinion, it just has all the right “ingredients” . It definitely stood out among other horror movies when it was released and was indeed very controversial. But, it was a fresh idea and it became a huge hit. It was one of the defining moments of Alfred Hitchcock’s career, and vanished any doubts that Alfred Hitchcock is indeed, a legend.
Psycho tells the story of a young woman named Marion Crane (Janet Leigh) who steals $40,000 from her employer since she can’t afford to get married to her boyfriend, Sam Loomis (John Gavin). So she steals the money and drives out of town. As it gets darker, she decides to pull over to a motel to spend the night in. Little does she know what awaits her in the near future…
Before Psycho, horror movies used to be the subject of something supernatural that probably won’t happen in real life, but Psycho was one of, if not the first movie that deals with the evil within the human mind. It basically showed us how fucked up humans can be. It is the Grandaddy of the slasher genre which spawned many great films such as A Nightmare on Elm Street and The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (I just had to mention that movie didn’t I?). Moreover, Psycho is a movie that has balls, no one could fuck with it. Alfred Hitchcock put a specific set of rules on how to watch Psycho, it had to be from the very beginning and no living soul was allowed into the theater after the movie started. Despite that, theaters were met with long lines on the day it was released.
I’ve probably watched Psycho more than a dozen times, but let me tell you, it never fails to surprise me every time I pop that sucker into the DVD player. The movie itself isn’t scary due to the fact that there’s nothing that would induce fear, well at least not to me. But what it lacks in horror, it makes up in suspense. My goodness, the amount of suspense in Psycho is just unbelievable. But the thing is, Psycho isn’t a movie that supposed to scare you whilst watching it, it’s a movie that scares you after you watch it. The reason being is that it shows you the how fucked up a human being can be without being too over the top .
Remember that the source of of inspiration for Norman Bates is Ed Gein, a real life psychopath. Norman Bates…that motherfucker creeps the living shit out of me, he’s the reason why I don’t trust anyone who’s too nice/friendly. Anthony Perkins did a wonderful job portraying Norman Bates because throughout the movie, you would have never even guessed his secret, and his presence is felt throughout the movie, like he’s hiding in some dark alley waiting to jump at you.
As you may know, the movie was shot in black and white because of it’s low budget. But I wouldn’t have had it any other way. I’ve probably said it before, but watching a black and white horror flick is like experiencing a bad dream, it creates a very uncomfortable environment that isn’t the best to have when watching a movie. The editing was just amazing for the time, and it proves how powerful it is in the movie’s most iconic scene, the infamous “Shower Scene”. The cinematography was fantastic, the actors did a good job. The movie became legendary.
Psycho is definitely the movie to watch for anyone who appreciates movies. Don’t watch part 3 and 4; if you really want to watch a sequel and not get shitfaced, watch part 2 ONLY.
Take a Drink: Whenever someone is murdered
Take a Drink: Whenever Norman freaks you out
Take a Drink: Every time you see Norman eat anything
Do a Shot: Every time Norma (not Norman) Bates talks