4 out of 5

Director: Alfred Hitchcock

There’s no reason to write another review for Psycho except to document ones thoughts or experiences. So, for my own edification: I did not see Psycho when I should have. I think the film works best before youve seen too many movies, i.e. when youre in your growing period. Had I seen this for a class, and had it dissected for my pleasures, or when I was hell-bent on watching all the classics for an ad hoc film education, Im sure it would have impacted as it was meant to. Instead, I grew up without any Hitchcock, knowing the film, as many do, my reputation. I understood the references, I knew the plot (girl steals money, ends up getting killed unconnectedly by Psycho Norman Bates, whose motivations serve as the big twist for the movie). Now, years later, I have some Hitchcock under my belt and this movie… is great popcorn. I understand its relevance for its impact on cinema, but I dont think its Hitchcocks most polished piece. It comes across as a talented director giving a stab at a profitable genre… which is what it was. The twist and explanation at the end is schlocky, and I wish I could be transported back in time to see if it was convincing (apparently it was…), because you could tell what was up with momma Bates from shot one. I didnt have expectations because I accept this films place in history. But I think its standing exists more for its effect on the audiences than its quality. Great, and important, but not the best thing ever.

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