Happy 50th Birthday tomorrow to one of the best, and most frightening, classic mystery movies ever made. On June 16, 1960, Alfred Hitchcock's brilliant thriller "Psycho" was released to the public.
"Psycho" broke all kinds of rules. One of the most noteworthy: a key star was murdered - very much onscreen - early in the movie. "Psycho" turned the act of taking a shower into a nightmare for millions of us. And the shocking ending of the movie still ranks as one of the most horrifying scenes ever.
Those were the days, of course, when directors knew how to make effective horror films without needing buckets of blood and guts. "Psycho" was made in black and white. No 3D effects. Very little real on-screen violence. Just good acting and, of course, Hitchcock's incredible direction. Even in the classic horror scenes, you never saw what you might have thought you had seen. It was the direction, the editing, the acting (not to mention Bernard Herrmann's music) that made the movie work and scared the stuffing out of you.
ABCNEWS.com has a fine article about the movie and its birthday. It reminds us that the audience HAD to be seated in the theater by the beginning of the movie - latecomers would not be allowed in. Those of us who had seen it knew there was a good reason for that. If you have never seen it - go ahead. Scare yourself. But take your shower before you watch it.
Hat tip: Buck Wolf and AOL Weird News