I confess my Hitchcock knowledge is minimal and I have only seen 3 of his films.
This biopic focuses on a specific section of Alfred Hitchcock’s life; his direction of one of his most famous films Psycho. Hitch, played by Anthony Hopkins (Silence of the lambs, Remains of the day) is wonderfully humorous and a little morbid.
The film sets the scene by introducing Ed Gein, the real life inspiration for the book Psycho by Robert Bloch. Hitchcock’s obsession to create a new type of film leads him to adapt the book and fund a movie of it himself.
The passion for Psycho, his fixation with his leading ladies and refusal to budget his life for the needs of his film causes further tension with his wife, Alma played by Helen Mirren (The Queen)
The cast of Psycho is well remade with Scarlett Johansson (lost in Translation, Avengers) as The Main Starlet, Janet Leigh, James D’Arcy as Norman Bates (masters and commanders) and Jessica Biel (Total Recall, The Illusionist) as Vera Miles, one of Hitchcock’s previous potential blondes.
Ever increasingly violent dreams and paranoid behaviour with added pressure from the studio and the ever strict censor leave Hitchcock and Alma at a cross roads that only their reconcilement and Psycho’s success can repair.
Hopkins is utterly convincing as Hitchcock and plays his darker sides and faults with a sadness and glee.
I loved Hitchcock’s dedication to creating a picture that people (even critics) would have to see to know the end and his demand of secretly amongst the cast and crew especially when these days we are so used to be spammed by spoilers, set pictures and extended trailers.
The Psycho remake from 1988 was frame by frame in places but paled in comparison to the original. This film was a new way of remaking Psycho and comes off as a testimony to its success and a homage to its great director.
Overall a delightful film for any Hitchcock fan and has encouraged me to watch more of his classics.
Hitchcock is out now at UK cinemas