The movie is about the making of the movie Psycho. It starts with the events that the original book was based on, then moves to Alfred Hitchcock, discovering the book, and trying to get the movie made. Until this point, horror movies were not his specialty, and the start of the movie follows Hitchcock as he tries to get a studio interested in funding the project.
In the end, he decides to take a massive risk, and mortgages his house to fund the making of the movie. His wife is there supporting him all the way.
What I liked:
I loved the dialogue and the casting. Anthony Hopkins (while better looking even in his “ugly” make up) did an incredible job mimicking the real Alfred Hitchcock. He was 100 percent believable as a vile tyrant, who was in love with the art of movie making. Hitchcock was a very complex man and Anthony Hopkins pulled the different facets together beautifully.
I loved the focus on the relationship between Alfred and his wife Alma (Helen Mirren). It showed a side of Hitchcock that was probably very rarely seen in the public eye. There was complications and difficulties, as with many “show bizz” relationships, and I felt they were played out beautifully.
What I did not like:
I thought the focus on the man himself was a bit sugar coated. While all I have are news reports and articles, by all accounts, Alfred Hitchcock was not a nice man. He was a womaniser who bedded many of his leading ladies – and rumours even suggest that this was a pre-requisite to becoming one of his leading ladies, he was cruel on set to cast and crew, he was tyrannical, and he was generally seen to be a bit crazy. This movie made him out to be a misunderstood softy with a few anger issues. It glanced over the relationships with the leading ladies, referring to them as mere “crushes” or “infatuations”. It focussed on an implied affair that Alma was meant to be having, however completely ignored Alfred’s outside dalliances.
Despite all this, I really enjoyed the movie. I see a lot of it as fictional rather than a true account of the man himself, but did enjoy seeing the process of how one of my favourite movies was made.
I would highly recommend this movie to anyone who is a fan of Psycho or movies of this time.