Psycho vs Psycho – Hitchcock’s classic vs Gus Van Sant’s remake
You often hear film fans bemoaning the unwanted and unnecessary nature of remakes, especially when it concerns a cherished work that holds a certain amount of nostalgia value. But is there ever any merit in reimagining or updating a sacred cinematic text?
In the first in a new video essay series entitled Remake/Remodel, Leigh Singer explores this highly contentious trend by analysing Alfred Hitchcock’s seminal 1960 horror, Psycho, and its near-identical 1998 update, as directed by Gus Van Sant.
He starts by looking at the fundamental differences between the films, paying close attention to structure and pacing, before presenting a fascinating side-by-side breakdown of several key moments, including the iconic shower scene – which in the case of Van Sant comprises almost twice the number of shots.
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