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Explore the ways in which Hitchcock creates tension and impact in the shower scene in Psycho

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Introduction

Explore the ways in which Hitchcock creates tension and impact in the shower scene in Psycho The film Psycho directed by Alfred Hitchcock is definitely in the genre of a horror film. A horror film should include the ideas of fear, suspense, unexpected surprises that make you jump, twists, history and depth in the plot, and an element of mystery. The film Psycho fits these ideas. Psycho which was released in the 1960's is a film that has maintained its popularity, and is still admired to the present day. Hitchcock directly asked people not to walk into the film when it was half way through and for them not to tell anyone what happens in the film. This could have made the popularity of the film last longer, as it invited more viewers into the pictures as they did not know what to expect. Hitchcock had to stick to the censors rules if he wanted to show the film to the public. The censors objected to too much nudity and any physical violent contact to the skin. ...read more.

Middle

They are just natural everyday sounds that do not come as a surprise. We hear the sounds as Marion would hear them, and they drown out any other sounds. These natural sounds mask the entrance of the killer. Throughout the time that Marion is showering, we get several close-up shots on Marion's face and the showerhead, bringing the viewer right into the action. The camera then focuses on a shot of Marion in the first third of the frame, and a shadow beyond the curtain approaching her in the last third. We get a shot of Marion in the shower from an angle where we can see the bathroom door. We see someone come through the door, but we cannot tell who it is because we see them through the shower curtain. The use of camera angle with both foreground and background action creates a lot of tension and suspense. We get a shot of Marion in the shower from an angle where we can see the bathroom door. This is a called a double shot when Marion is in the shower and the figure is behind the curtain. ...read more.

Conclusion

As the villain leaves the room the music switches to a low pitched violin that could represent a heart beat. The music gradually gets slower and quieter, this could represent Marion's heart beat slowly coming to an end, resulting into her death. As Marion grabs onto the shower curtain in desperation for help, it is ripped and falls downwards along with Marion who dangles from the bath. This could be seen as symbolic as a lot of things in this scene are going downwards, Marion sliding down wall, the shower curtain, the water from the shower head and Marion toppling over the edge of the bath, this could symbolize Marion's life ending going down to hell for the sin she committed. The shower scene bursts with techniques of tension and impact. One of the main ways in which tension and impact are created is through Hitchcock's extensive use of camera set ups, over seventy were used for this important scene alone. Lighting, music, sound and drama are also crucial in the shower scene. All of those aspects together create a huge atmosphere of tension, making this classic film memorable, dramatic and frightening. ...read more.

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