Product Designer Blog
23 Feb 2010
Film Review: Psycho (1960)
I like how Alfred Hitchcock plays with the audience. Like in this trailer he starts introducing with the film set, talks about what scenes are happening there; He is just about to talk more in depth about the interesting and intriguing parts of the film like how the investigator dyes or what is so viciously important about the mother... but "Oh, lets better go to her bedroom'' .This type of game is done continuously. He opens the chest but he doesn't give for us to see and leaves in curiosity.
I can't believe how deeply involved I found myself with the feelings of the Hotel's owner : "Oh let that car sink !" Or how worried you become if he succeeds to cover all the evidence after what you think , wasn't it the dead women you should feel sorry for?.. Not in Hitchcock's scenario.
From the point of film making it was a rich experience.
The most wonderful shots to me were the transition from blood spinning down the drain to zoom out of still eyeball of dead Marion
The superimpose at the very end of Norman and corps skeleton.
Several other shots that became a pleasant experience because of the camera work - such as the pull back when the investigator was coming up the stairs, made such a common action into a slightly surreal experience.
I noticed lots of other camera movements but the most importantly - how the control of what's shown on the screen without any comments can create the meaning. For instance in the hotel when camera moved around Marion's room showing - I believed in that long take an explanation of why she faced her destiny was intended why she was being killed that is what sequence of events brought her there by showing objects in that room.
There is truly so much more to talk about - the black and white imagery, the composition..
wait, I should talk more about the composition .. :D
It was similar to John Carpenter's Halloween way of composing - where one side of the screen in foreground is occupied with a victim (Marion, Laurie) and the other side in the background is left for the criminal to attack (The Mother, The Masked man) in this way bringing the tension (oh no, there's too much of space not occupied with the main character, something is going to happen...).
The hotel owner. From the very first scenes he appeared I was intrigued - he starts being charming and very confident gentleman, but then falls into difficult way of talking, nervous eye moves and .. starts looking boyish and funny. The same happens both with Marion and the rest of other "visitors". It still didn't reveal what the ending is going to be, but A viewer might guess - he stores couple of faces, in this case, couple of personalities :D :D
I felt sorry for him - he did all the things out of love for her mother, and it's the mother indeed who is the vilain :D
It is my second Hitchcock's film and by now I really understand why he is mentioned so often.
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