Psycho Essay Research Paper Alfred Hitchcocks fantasticthriller

Psycho Essay, Research Paper

Alfred Hitchcock?s fantastic

thriller Psycho was made in the late 1950?s. Since then it has become a cult

classic all over the world. Janet Leigh plays the helpless victim Marian

Craine, brutally murdered in the shower by the psychotic Norman Bates. ? When Marian arrives at the small, isolated

motel she has no clue to what is around the next corner. The rain is beating

down so hard you can?t hear anything all you can see is the big old house with

a shadow of someone in the window. This setting creates a terrifying atmosphere

because it?s so dark and quiet you don?t know what to expect or what?s going to

happen next. ?? In the opening dialogue between Norman and

Marian, Norman shows her to her room. She is the only guest staying at Bates

Motel so he puts her in room number 1 the closest room to him. Norman

underlines how isolated the motel is by saying that no one ever comes to the

motel anymore. ? Marian checks in under a different name

because she wants to hide her identity. This is because she stole some money

from where she works and is on the run. ?? The house behind the motel is big, old and

frightening. It is appropriate to the genre as it creates an element of tension

its not somewhere you would want to go. When Marian is unpacking in her room

she overhears a conversation between Norman and his mother. Norman?s mother is

shouting at him because she doesn?t want him seeing young women, as her son

might be lead astray. This makes the audience feel sympathy towards him, his

mother treats him like a child and he is still worried she will tell him off he

is scared of her.? ?? When Norman and Marian enter the parlour

the camera draws our attention to two stuffed birds. The dead birds symbolise

death, murder, preying on other creatures. When Marian talks about the birds

she says its good for a man to have a hobby but Norman says it?s more than just

a hobby. This indicates that he is a loner. He only has his mother and she

controls his life. ? Psycho?? The purpose of the extended dialogue between

the two central characters is to get to know them better particularly Norman

Bates. Within the dialogue there are hints about what is going to happen later.

Its starts to reveal a more sinister, threatening side to Norman. When Norman

talks of his mother the angle of the camera focuses the audience on one of the

birds connecting Norman with murder and death. ? As they talk of the mad house the camera

works to convey tension by focusing up close on the two central characters, the

camera cuts from one face to the next. When the camera is focused on Norman?s

face his eyes stare intensely and become threatening this makes Marian feel

uncomfortable and nervous around Norman. When the camera focuses on Norman?s

eye it is just still staring all you see is a little beam of light from the

room shinning onto it. ?? The shower scene can be broken down into

many different frames to help with the interpretation of this part of the film.

When Marian enters the shower the camera focuses on her washing, she is very

vulnerable because she is naked and has no means of escape. The camera spends a

long time focusing on her washing this indicates to the audience that something

is going to happen. Hitchcock uses dramatic irony the audience see a figure

behind the shower curtain before Marian does therefore we are alerted to the

danger. Someone opens the curtain and Marian turns around this is when the

music starts, it?s high pitched and creates lots of tension. The camera flashes

from the killer to her, Norman stabbing her and the fear in her eyes. Norman

runs away and she reaches for the shower curtain, she is reaching out for

someone to help her. The camera focuses on her blood running down the drain,

this symbolises her life being wasted away. We see her eye still and lifeless this

connects to when Norman was watching her through the peephole.


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