Pyscho (1960)

*****

Alfred Hitchcock’s Pyscho (1960) has become synonmous and infamous with the genre of  the thriller.

The film, which is based upon the 1959 novel of the same name, by Robert Bloch. It stars, Anthony Perkins, Vera Miles, John Gavin and Janet Leigh.

Pyscho is considered one of Hitchcock’s best films, it is ranked as one of the greatest films of all time. It was awarded four Academy Award nominations, including Best Actress of Leigh and Best Director for Hitchcock.

The Plot, according to IMDB: “A Phoenix secretary steals $40,000 from her employer’s client, goes on the run and checks into a remote motel run by a young man under the domination of his mother.”

From the very first scene, an aerial shot of Phoenix, an apartment block, the camera pans in to one window, in to one story, we know that there are other stories which Hitchcock could have gone too, but this apartment clearly has significance.

The cast is superb, Anthony Perkins gives a sterling turn as the stammering Norman Bates, whereas Vera Miles’ performance sets the tone for the film, it turns from a film of escape to a who dunnit.

The story is clever and I’m eager not to give too much away, with many twists, turns and clever film making by the great Hitchcock, it is no wonder that this film is considered one of the greats.

Watch it.

Profile of an Auteur: Stanley Kubrick

Words by Naomi Jeffreys

Definition of an Auteur: A filmmaker who influences their movies so much that they rank as their author.

Stanley Kubrick, was a Jewish-American filmmaker who rose to prominence because of his distinct film-making style. His films are acclaimed for their technical perfection and the deep symbolism.

He is known for Lolita, amongst others films, including the gory horror film A Clockwork Orange. 

 He was often nominated for awards, he was nominated for an Oscar for Lolita for Best Adapted Screenplay. He was then nominated for a Golden Globe for Best Director.

What’s more, some of his work was extremely controversial because of their graphic and sexual content. He was not afraid to push boundaries, he always had his own slant on films and is a true Auteur.

Full Metal Jacket (1987) is an interesting film because of his use of music, he uses music seemingly at odd times in the film. The music becomes another character, it clashes, at times, with the action. But, again, this was Kubrick firmly stamping his mark on his films. The film is brutal, angry — and is consequently absorbing to watch.

Kubrick is considered an Auteur because of his long production period, Kubrick took years to complete a film, ensuring that every shot was perfect. Kubrick also worked with a small production group, this allowed Kubrick to remain in control at all times.

What’s more, Kubrick also quite often would undertake the roles of Director, Producer and Writer, again to remain in control. Kubrick himself strived for privacy and consequently became a recluse.

Perhaps most of all, Kubrick strived for technical perfection, he was a true Auteur, whose work has inspired many a filmmaker, and continues to do so. His films have become part of cinema history.

 “What we were after now was the old surprise visit. That was a real kick and good for laughs and lashings of the old ultraviolent. ” Alex, A Clockwork Orange 

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire – Behind the Scenes

Words by Naomi Jeffreys

The fourth in the Harry Potter series, the Goblet of Fire was considerably darker than the previous films.

Directed by Mike Newell (Four Weddings and a Funeral) and starred Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint and Emma Watson. It was the first film in the series which dealt with teenage  troubles, love, hormones and well, a Triwizard Tournament.

According to online sources, ‘as of July 2011, the film holds an 87% “Certified Fresh” overall approval rating at Rotten Tomatoes. Likewise atMetacritic, the film received a score of 81, which indicates “universal acclaim”‘. What’s more, ‘the young actors were praised for demonstrating a “greater range of subtle emotions”‘.

The film’s budget was $150 million and the film was a box office smash, grossing $896,911,078 worldwide.

Check out the behind the scenes images below: