Psycho

Theaters are still showing the amusing Hitchcock, about how the famed director came to make this 1960 shocker, which is always worth seeing again. And listening to again. As Anthony Perkins, dressed in his mother's drag, surprises Janet Leigh in the shower with a carving knife, it's the shrieking soundtrack and meticulous editing--of both sound and picture--that make you believe you've seen something you haven't. The penetration of the blade is never shown, and the rest of the film relies on equally subtle suggestion. The taxidermy birds, beckoning swamp, and curiously empty rooms at the Bates Motel all hint at the proprietor's unhinged state of mind. If Leigh's flighty fugitive misses the signs, it may be because she's preoccupied with own guilt. Hitchcock pairs the two in a weird kind of seduction: She wants to confess, but can't. He wants to caress, but can't. There's so much repression that violence, not sex, is the only release. Movie screens at midnight. (NR) BRIAN MILLER

Fri., Dec. 7; Sat., Dec. 8, 2012

 
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