Search This Blog

Monday, 18 February 2013


A chapter of romance and suspense; Hopkins and Mirren are a joy to watch

I can't remember the last time I saw Anthony Hopkins on screen; maybe it wasn't a movie worth remembering if I did. But this time around he portrays the master of suspense in what unfortunately isn't a full biopic, but a chapter of great importance regarding the man he would be forever remembered for. 

With movies such as Vertigo and North by Northwest added to his catalogue, Alfred Hitchcock (Anthony Hopkins) is on the look out for an entirely new premise of film making, one that is bound to leave him knee deep in despicable perceptions. With a majority of writers destined to work with Alfred, he struggles to accept a plethora of scripts that ultimately lead him to reading Psycho; a suspenseful novel by Robert Bloch. The book is loosely based on Wisconsin serial killer Ed Gein. Fascinated by Bloch's creative serial killer, Alfred can see the script for his next movie the more he reads the book. His wife Alma (Helen Mirren) is far from convinced as she consistently reminds him that such a genre is not only unheard of then, but she believes that he is setting himself up for a media crucifixion.

This brief chapter in Hitchcock's life is centred around his desperate fight in persuading Paramount Studios boss Barney (Richard Portnow) to take Psycho to the big screen. While on the other hand we are treated to the highs and lows of his relationship with Alma. Despite her love for Alfred, his frontal involvement with shower victim Janet Leigh (Scarlett Johansson) and twin sister Vera Miles (Jessica Biel) of the Psycho cast is proving difficult to over come this time around. Alfred starts to feel the Pressure as his lack of attention toward Alma results in a solo project, while Paramount Studios on the other hand are beginning to show signs of regret as their reputation hangs in the balance of a film revealing more downs than ups. 

Director Sacha Gervasi shoots another euphoric movie following the Terminal in 2004. However, with a movie entitled Hitchcock, viewers may have expected more of the man himself rather than Alma Reville. There is a huge focus on Alma and her apparent drive toward making Psycho the movie that it is, with some saying she is hugely responsible for helping Psycho to the big screen.  With the movie largely titled Hitchcock, I would have liken to get a deeper insight into the man behind the darkness; instead we get a number of haunting sequences of Hitchcock's nightmares involving Ed Gein. Never the less, it showcases Hitchcock's relationship status in fantastic form with some feel-good romance as well as both personalities offering a comedic twist.

The sequences on the set of Psycho are rare, with the brief chemistry of Janet Leigh and Hitchcock running a little bit short. I would have liken to see more of James D'Arcy as Anthony Perkins/Norman Bates, who despite his cameo appearance is quite memorable in what is a shocking resemblance to the original both physically and verbally.

Overall: Hitchcock is a fascinating insight into the life of a man struggling to cope with certain expectations. It is unfortunate this is not a full biopic, however the performance from Hopkins doesn't go unnoticed, along with the chemistry he shares alongside Helen Mirren proving exceptionally funny and emotionally heart-felt. 


No comments:

Post a Comment