Thursday, March 1, 2012

Psycho 4 (1990)

Looking to enlighten the audience of a local radio station with his story, reformed serial killer Norman Bates decides to call in to a segment about matricide, reliving the traumatic childhood events that drove him to kill. This unique framing story allows Anthony Perkins to remain in the prequel as our narrator, often injecting himself as a spectator to his own troubled past. Though many may say that PSYCHO needs no introduction, others will argue that Joseph Stefano's treatment delivers a welcomed back story to the screen's most infamous killer. With the stunning Olivia Hussey playing Mrs. Bates, it is no wonder Norman developed such an odd relationship with his mother. Norma's wicked treatment of her son through verbal castration and taunting sexual torments makes it quite clear why Norman should turn out the way he has. But Hussey also embraces the kinder moments, giving us a dual perspective that accounts for Norman's love and obsession with his mother. Henry Thomas is competent as the young Norman, but his performance is lacking in personality. With a twist ending that closes the book on the PSYCHO series, we feel satisfied that Norman's story has been told to completion.

Rating: 8/10.

6 comments:

  1. Haven't seen this one is far too long. Need a rewatch so I can absorb it and "finish off" the Psycho saga.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Believe it or not, this was the first PSYCHO film I had ever seen, thanks to the old SciFi Channel reruns in the 90s. I enjoy it every time!

    ReplyDelete
  3. "Psycho 4" is the only sequel in the series I've watched and as I recall it wasn't too bad. The again, it's been over 15 years since I've seen this movie.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Seriously, why is John Landis playing a Radio Show Producer in this and Spontaneous Combustion. That's just too coincidental.

    As far as the movie goes, it's pointless. While Hussey plays the role as best as is possible, it's just a pointless, pointless movie.

    Better then 'Psycho III'- granted.

    ReplyDelete
  5. John Landis is a bit player -- his acting resume specifically states that he will only play radio producers and or crime scene investigators.

    But there is pointless, and there is pointless and terrible. If a sequel to Psycho was to be produced regardless, I feel that Mick and Joe Stefano did the best they could and turned out a surprisingly good movie, especially given the fact that it was made for TV.

    ReplyDelete
  6. My first thought when I see 'Psycho IV' is that there is a reason why Mick Garris PRODUCED Masters of Horror, but didn't make any films for it. His resume includes 'Psycho IV' and 'Sleepwalkers'- nuff said.

    I just think that they argument of 'well, they were going to make it anyways' is a silly one. Just don't make it. There- done.

    ReplyDelete