Director Alexandre O Phillipe’s new documentary 78/52 takes a look behind the curtain at cinematic icon Alfred Hitchcock, his hit film Psycho, and that one shower scene that changed the horror genre as we knew it forever.
To celebrate the DVD release of 78/52, which is out on Monday 11 December, here’s a sneak peek at Phillipe’s interview with one of the film’s contributors, director Guillermo del Toro (Pacific Rim, Crimson Peak, Pan’s Labyrinth):
You can read the synopsis for 78/52 here:
In 78 setups and 52 cuts, the deliriously choreographed two-minute shower sequence in Psycho ripped apart cinema’s definition of horror. With a shocking combination of exploitation and high art, Alfred Hitchcock upended his own acclaimed narrative structure by violently killing off a heroine a third of the way through his film, without explanation, justification, or higher purpose. Psycho played out like a horrific prank, forcing audiences to recognize that even the most banal domestic spaces were now fair game for unspeakable mayhem.
With black-and-white film-geek reverence, director Alexandre O. Philippe breaks down this most notorious and essential scene shot for shot, enlisting the help of film buffs and filmmakers alike – including Guillermo del Toro, Bret Easton Ellis, Karyn Kusama, Eli Roth and Peter Bogdanovich. 78/52 examines Janet Leigh’s terrified facial expressions and the blink-and-you-miss-it camera work, not just within the context of the film but also with an eye toward America’s changing social mores – revealing how one bloody, chaotic on-screen death killed off chaste cinema and eerily predicted a decade of unprecedented violence and upheaval.
78/52 will be released on DVD on 11 December 2017. You can order your copy here. Get all the latest horror news with every issue of SciFiNow.