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A few words about...™ Psycho II -- in Blu-ray

A Few Words About Shout Factory Universal Blu-ray

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#1 of 10 OFFLINE   Robert Harris

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Posted October 22 2013 - 05:03 PM

Scream Factory's quality has been up there since their early releases, and with Psycho II, a film that I never though could get made, that quality continues.

 

Their presentation, via Universal, looks like film.  Color, grain structure, shadow detail, blacks... all fine.

 

The only slight problem that I noted, was not with Scream, or even Universal, but rather, with some of the original dupes -- just a bit of positive dirt duped in.

 

Horror fans will take note that the film was written by Tom Holland, and generally the sequel works.  Also take note of some quite lovely matte paintings by Albert Whitlock.  DP on this was Dean Cundey -- another favorite of horror fans, although he does other things on occasion.

 

Is Psycho II one of the great films.  I don't think so.  But it's certainly fun, and those who love the original, should be interested enough to see where it goes.

 

A high end Blu-ray from Scream Factory.

 

Recommended.

 

Image - 4.5

 

Audio - 5

 

RAH


"All men dream: but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds wake in the day to find that it was vanity: but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dreams with open eyes, to make it possible. This I did." T.E. Lawrence


#2 of 10 OFFLINE   Matt Hough

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Posted October 22 2013 - 06:23 PM

My biggest complaint about the film was that it remained true to the spirit of the original movie (violence implicit rather than explicit) until the moment Vera Miles is caught in that basement. Then it becomes just another bloodbath that has nothing to do with the class of film that Hitchcock produced.



#3 of 10 OFFLINE   Michael Elliott

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Posted October 22 2013 - 06:58 PM

To be fair, the Hitch film was pretty violent, bloody and shocking for its time. I've always thought this sequel was extremely good but I prefer the third film and its rather dark humor. I still need to pick both up but I'm waiting until I can find them cheaper.

#4 of 10 OFFLINE   cineMANIAC

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Posted October 23 2013 - 05:40 AM

 it becomes just another bloodbath that has nothing to do with the class of film that Hitchcock produced.

 

Psycho II was made at a time when slasher films were being churned out by the dozen on a monthly basis. I think it turned out pretty good considering.


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#5 of 10 OFFLINE   Matt Hough

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Posted October 23 2013 - 07:22 AM

Psycho II was made at a time when slasher films were being churned out by the dozen on a monthly basis. I think it turned out pretty good considering.

 

Exactly my point. It could have taken the high road all the way through. Instead, it started with restraint and by the end was no better than the run-of-the-mill slashers.



#6 of 10 OFFLINE   TravisR

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Posted October 23 2013 - 08:04 AM

Exactly my point. It could have taken the high road all the way through. Instead, it started with restraint and by the end was no better than the run-of-the-mill slashers.

I guess they wanted one big violent scene to stick in people's mind (a la the original's shower scene) but it is pretty out of place with the rest of the movie. My biggest problem is that the effect is lousy. I first saw the movie on TV a few decades ago and it cuts away when she starts screaming removing the overt violence. When I saw it on VHS and viewed the effect, it was probably when I figured out what people meant by "less is more".



#7 of 10 OFFLINE   zoetmb

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Posted October 24 2013 - 05:09 PM

As I remember it (correct me if I'm wrong), Robert Bloch, the original author of Psycho, wrote a sequel, but it wasn't used for this film.   I remember reading that sequel and while I no longer remember the plot, I remember thinking that it was better than the plot of Psycho II.  



#8 of 10 OFFLINE   rybev

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Posted October 25 2013 - 04:31 AM

Exactly my point. It could have taken the high road all the way through. Instead, it started with restraint and by the end was no better than the run-of-the-mill slashers.

I find the slasher comparison a bit of a cliché. Psycho II is a great suspense horror that builds to a climax. It doesn't feature a final girl, a man in a mask, extensive characters appearing just to die, a chase through the woods etc etc.
It just happens to feature a violent, exaggerated death - hardly cause to change your view on what saw for the previous 90 minutes.

No matter what anyone did, Psycho II was never going have the same feel or impact as the original. It was inevitable that elements of a sequel made in the 80s would be indicative of its time, if it hadn't done this and really tried to emulate what the original had then I'm sure it wouldn't be as well regarded by fans as it is today.

One death scene does not a slasher make.

Edited by rybev, October 25 2013 - 04:33 AM.


#9 of 10 OFFLINE   cineMANIAC

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Posted October 25 2013 - 09:13 AM

I never meant to suggest Psycho II is a slasher film  - just that is was unreasonable to expect a film on the same level as the original film. In 1983, if it were to follow the style of the original, Psycho II would've come across as more of an episode of Masterpiece theater. The producers obviously thought that wasn't going to work so they decided to "up the ante". Still, it's a very good film all things considered.


 

 


#10 of 10 OFFLINE   albert_m2

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Posted October 25 2013 - 10:04 AM

Fortunately the movie is fairly "slasher" (as in clearly on screen visuallly graphic) free for a long while, but it does seem to turn that way for the last third.

Seem unvoidable for a horror film in the early 80s though.

 

Ironic that the iconic movie that arguably gave birth the genre ended up following in the (then) current style.







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