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Video: Psycho Trailer (1960)

Excerpt from "My favourite Hitchcock: Pyscho" by Peter Bradshaw, the Guardian, Film Blog:

At 61, Alfred Hitchcock was reaching what many saw as the end of an illustrious career. Then he took a quantum leap to further greatness with a low-budget, black-and-white shocker.

Hitchcock's macabre pulp masterpiece begins with the most dangerous piece of tax evasion in movie history. Sweaty, leery, cowboy-hatted businessman Tom Cassidy has come into the office of a Phoenix realtor, George Lowery, to close a house purchase in cash: an ostentatious wedding present for his 18-year-old daughter, due to get hitched the next day.

He boasts to the secretary, Marion Crane, that the $40,000 he's waving under her nose has been amassed without reference to the tax authorities. He even brags that he never carries more than he can afford to lose. In a shrewd instant, Marion reaches a conclusion Hitchcock cleverly never spells out. If she steals his money, he can take the hit and won't call the cops because that would alert the IRS. She's right. As things turn out, Cassidy only engages a private detective, the stolid Arbogast. But her fantasies of Cassidy's rage-filled threats about getting his money back are weirdly prescient: "If any of it's missing, I'll replace it with her fine soft flesh!" What a very psycho image.

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