15 January 2013

Hitchcock the Movie

It’s becoming a bit of a habit with us on Tuesdays to go to the movies with friends Ann and George. Well you can do that when you’re retired, can’t you. We drive quite a distance over to Graceville to the Regal Twin. Two small boutique cinemas always screen excellent movies. Last week we saw ‘Quartet’ and today we saw ‘Hitchcock.’

Anthony Hopkins is 'Hitch'
 This is a love story between the famous Hollywood director, Alfred Hitchcock (Anthony Hopkins) and his wife, Alma Reville (Helen Mirren). Alfred Hitchcock, ‘Hitch’ is bored after completing his latest movie ‘North By Northwest’ and is searching for his next project. He comes across the 1959 suspense/horror novel Psycho, by Robert Bloch with the screenplay by Joseph Stephano. Hitch is hooked and determined to make this his next film. But the powerful studios are not willing to finance such a controversial project, especially as they anticipate nudity in the shower scene.

Scarlet Johanssen is Janet Leigh

Hitch finally convinces Paramount Studios that he could finance the project himself and would forgo his $250,000 director’s fee in lieu of 60% of the profits, the film would make.  So he’s on the way. He casts Janet Leigh (Scarlett Johanssen) to play Marion Crane and Anthony Perkins (James D’Arcy) as Norman Bates.

The story really takes shape as Alma, who has previously always helped Hitch with his movies now is co-writing a script with a friend and is frequently absent to the annoyance of Hitch who is jealous.  But Alma is also jealous of Hitch’s roving eye with his leading ladies.

Hitch and Alma edit Psycho

The film completed, Hitch is unable to successfully cut it into the film he had envisaged. He finally pleads with Alma for help, which the ever faithful spouse provides and after convincing Hitch that they need music in the famous shower scene, Psycho is ready to be screened but Paramount, still not convinced about the project, grant him only 2 cinemas to screen the movie, without a Premiere. Hitch counters with a very clever marketing strategy, by placing riot police at every screening, which gets the success he so rightly deserves. Psycho ended up being the most successful film Alfred Hitchcock ever made.

There are lots of behind the scenes shots which many film buffs will find fascinating.

Once again, I liked this movie and can can recommend it.




  1. I've heard less than glowing reviews of the movie, but it sounds ok. Very interesting to learn that Hitch took 60% profit, rather than a fee. What a wise decision. American studios worried about nudity as was in Psysho, silly.

  2. You sound a little bit tepid in this review, Wilbo - 'liked it' - I read a review in The Age the other day and the writer hated it. How many stars out of five?

  3. I really liked the movie too and would give it 3 and a half stars out of 5. I go to the movies to be entertained, and I was with "Psycho".

  4. I enjoyed it too because I am a bio buff.

  5. NICE one, Billy B. We, too, enjoyed the film and to answer Kath's query above and, yes, I too have read the lukewarm Age reviews ---- 3 and three-quarter stars.
    So that's not an exact rating. To round it up --- FOUR stars from me.

    We too love biographies so can't wait to see Lincoln early Feb.
    Kath, we were also a bit amazed at David Stratton's pre-Xmas comments on ABC-TV's At The Movies where he wasn't all that rapt in Helen Mirren's portrayal of Alma Reville.

    We thought she was excellent [but then we are absolute Helen fans} and also liked Toni Collette as Hitch's faithful secretary/girl Friday Peggy.


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