The Top 63 Marathon, part 42

Title: Psycho
Year: 1960
Length: 109 minutes
Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Writer: Joseph Stefano, based on the novel by Robert Bloch
Starring: Anthony Perkins, Vera Miles, John Gavin, Janet Leigh
Music: Bernard Herrmann
Distinctions: Oscar nominations for Best Director, Best Supporting Actress (Leigh), Best Cinematography (black-and-white) and Best Art Direction/Set Decoration (black-and-white); currently #23 on the IMDb’s Top 250

My reaction
Synopsis: a secretary runs off with stolen cash and ends up at an isolated motel
How I saw it: on video a couple times, most recently yesterday (rented from Netflix)
Concept: Indifferent.
Story: Great. Narrative expectations are for sissies.
Characters: Good.
Dialog: Good.
Pacing: Indifferent. Similar to Vertigo, he breaks the suspense an hour before the end of the movie and never quite puts it back.
Cinematography: Great.
Special effects/design: Great.
Acting: Good. Perkins is great, but the rest of them are unnatural.
Music: Great.
Subjective Rating: 7/10 (Good). Knowing what’s going to happen ruins most of the suspense, but it’s still awesome.
Objective Rating: 3.2/4 (Very good).


3 Responses to Psycho

  1. khocolatemoose says:

    What a great film. Although the “groundbreaking” special effects are dated, the story is still fun and fantastic. I’m not a huge Hitchcock fan, but I love to watch this often. Thanks for spreading the word. Feel free to join the conversation about films at

    We’d love to hear what you think, and often.



  2. Daniel says:

    Where are the special effects dated? I didn’t notice anything wrong with them, myself.

  3. khocolatemoose says:

    When Arbogast falls down the stairs is somewhat laughable by today’s standards. Also, the car driving scenes are a bit dated. It’s still a great movie.


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