It was made like a television movie, and completed in less than three months. It killed off its star in forty minutes. There was no happy ending. And it offered the most violent scene to date in American film, punctuated by shrieking strings that seared the national consciousness. Nothing like Psycho had existed before the movie industry- even America itself- would never be the same. In The Moment of Psycho , film critic David Thomson situates Psycho in Alfred Hitchcock's career, recreating the mood and time when the seminal film erupted onto film screens worldwide. Thomson shows that Psycho was not just a sensation in film: it altered the very nature of our desires. Sex, violence, and horror took on new life. Psycho , all of a sudden, represented all America wanted from a film- and, as Thomson brilliantly demonstrates, still does.
English-American writer David Thomson is the author of many books on film, including Have You Seen...?" A Personal Introduction to 1,000 Films, which the New York Times called, passionate, illuminating, rich, and eccentric" and the massively influential Biographical Dictionary of Film called the best book on the movies ever written in English" (The New Republic). He lives in San Francisco with his family.