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Alfred Hitchcock's Psycho and the American Horror Film - Movie Review Example

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The following paper “Alfred Hitchcock's Psycho and the American Horror Film” tries to analyze the reasons behind the movie “Psycho” turning out to be a benchmark film, not only for its introduction of a new genre but for the presentation of art in such a unique and unconventional manner…
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Alfred Hitchcocks Psycho and the American Horror Film
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Download file to see previous pages The man behind the movie is the person to be 'blamed' responsible for the introduction of this genre. Alfred Hitchcock, one of the greatest directors of all time is claimed to be one of the very few who could understand the pulse of the audience and play with that. His principal technique in presenting such kinds of Slashers films, especially Psycho was that he always scripts the movie with the audience in mind and how do they respond to each scene. His theory behind people coming to movie halls to watch it in dark is to enjoy their fear without having to worry about any danger. Falling from cliffs, fighting a tiger, etc., all are things highly improbable in reality. (Bays 2004) But, people like to realize them and when such events are shown in the film medium, they enjoy the fun and they become eager for more. Such is the power of cinema and none other than Hitchcock could have exploited it like the way he did. (Schaffer 2000)
Secondly, Hitchcock captured the emotion of the audience in each and every scene. In any frame of a movie, the position of the camera defines the emotion of the audience. A closeup shot brings out the emotions of the audience in relation to the movie whereas a long shot dilutes the emotions and brings them to a normal state. (Bays 2004) Hitchcock was able to handle the audience has his puppets making them react according to his will. He holds the position of being first to introduce unconventional angles, such as close up shots of people screaming and top angle views. But, what made all these shots such a phenomenon and a juicy piece of information for the critics to rave about was the way each shot panned from one to another. A top shot swiftly changing to a close-up and a wide to close up change became the hallmarks of Hitchcock's Psycho. It thrilled the audience with full of surprises, instances which could have been told very simple. Each frame of the movie was subtle with emotions yet eccentric to watch. (Alan 2010)
The final method involved in creating this genre is the use of sound and dialogues. Alfred was very confident in describing a character in the plot through his course of actions rather than through the delivery of dialogues. This was his main weaponry and his forte, yet to be matched by his compatriots as well as successors. He always believed many a time that a human can say a lot through his eyes that a 10-page dialogue. (Bays 2004) He indeed believed in it and this movie is a perfect example to describe the character of the psyche. Also, Hitchcock was skeptical of the usage of background music. A continuous flow of music followed by a sense of silence always puts the viewers to the edge of their seat and Alfred was a master of that in this movie. The continuous violin background used in major portions of the movie still lingers as a fresh piece of music in everyone's ears. Alfred proved that music could bring a lot of thrill into the viewers as much as the on-screen actors could do and he proved it in this film. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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