Psycho Parlor Scene Analysis

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In the Alfred Hitchcock Film “Psycho”, Norman Bates, a motel desk receptionist, is living with his “mother” in a giant house close to his family’s motel. The lovely Marion Crane, who is very disturbed and looks as if she has a dirty secret, greets him one stormy night. In the “parlor scene”, Norman and Marion are talking and eating dinner late at night. This scene shows the first clues of how crazy Norman actually is by showing a glimpse of his anger. Marion comments on his mother saying he might want to “put her in a home” considering how she is the reason he has no social life because he is always taking care of her. He becomes very extreme in his response to her and yells at Marion for no reason. This scene has beautifully and carefully …show more content…
All of its subfields have to work together perfectly to create an exceptionally great scene. The lighting, acting, and setting of this scene all add to the idea that the movie is at a turning point and is changing drastically.at the beginning of the scene we are shown the characters in the parlor room with light happy lighting and soft peaceful music in the background. Halfway through the scene the music stops and the lighting takes a dramatic turn. The lighting shows Norman in a dramatic way while Marion is seen as bland once again. This once again reimburses the fact that Marion is unimportant to the scene. She is seen with plain flat lighting that does not highlight any certain facial features in particular. Norman is seen with bold and dramatic shadows cast across the sides of his face that give the viewer a very ominous view of him and his personality. Marion is shown to act very timidly and almost as a secondary character to Norman. Marion in this scene when compared to Norman is merely used for the act of “shot reverse shot” so that he can get his spotlight. In this scene Norman starts out acting normal and happy and by the end is seen as almost violent and terrifying as he is yelling at Marion for the advice she gave him about his mother. Norman quickly regains his composure but Marion’s face shows us that she is scared. This is to show the transition from the fake story line into the real and …show more content…
Hitchcock uses this scene to set up the entire story and to help us better understand the characters and their motives. The suspense of the scene is built up till a climax at the end where the audience is shown more information about a Norman than what was expected. Hitchcock uses elements of sound, Mis-en-scene, and cinematography to display the outcome of this scene before we even know what is really going to happen. With the help of these aspects it can be inferred that the movie is about to take a drastic and very different change than what was previously thought to be the story line. This scene is a perfect example of how good director can even take the simplest of scenes and make it something unique and original. This scene starts out as a boring cheese sandwich dinner and at the end leaves you feeling like Norman is a psychopath ready to pounce at any given moment with nothing more than dialogue and some good

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