HITCHCOCK is a highly entertaining film biography that focuses on the filmmaker's relationship with his wife, Alma, during the making of PSYCHO.
Even if you don't know anything about the man and his movies, you can enjoy HITCHCOCK, but the more you know about him, the more you're likely to appreciate it.
Oscar winner Anthony Hopkins with fuller jowls and a fat suit plays the film director, and Helen Mirren is his wife.
Hitchcock: Tell me my dear; do you think I'm too old?
Alma: Yes, you're a true relic, and lest we forget, a notably corpulent one.
Hopkins and Mirren are terrific as an old married couple who really know how to get under each other's skin.
But it was news to me that Alma was a screenwriter and editor herself and that she contributed greatly to the success of many of Hitchcock's movies including, perhaps the most famous, PSYCHO.
Hitch: Just think of the shock value. Killing your leading lady halfway through. I mean you are intrigued, are you not, my dear.
Alma: Actually I think it's a huge mistake. You shouldn't wait till halfway through. Kill her after thirty minutes.
Alfred Hitchcock's rotund profile and affected manner of speech made him an icon in film history. and Hopkins really nails the 60 year old master of suspense who was obsessed with the young blondes he cast in so many of his films. It's a situation his wife tolerates only because none of those blondes are interested in a tryst with him.
Scarlett Johansson plays Janet Leigh, the female lead in PSYCHO.
Leigh to Hitchcock: How are you going to shoot the shower scene? it's only that from here up, I'm not exactly boyish.
And in fact, shooting that famous stabbing in the shower scene was a huge challenge, especially since the censors of the day (1960) restricted what could be shown.
Hitch: I do not want music over the shower murder scene….the images must work on their own.
Alma: we can't scare people just by going "boo!"….Take a step back. (dissolve)
(sound of violin screeches)
Editor to secretary watching the shower scene on his moviola: What do you think?
Secretary: I think I'll never have a shower again.
HITCHCOCK is full of revelations about this egotistic old director and the wife who never got the credit she deserved from anyone but him.
Alma: You may not be the easiest man to live with but you do know how to cut a picture better than anyone else.
Hitch: Except for you.
Terry Hunter, Hawaii News Now email@example.com