As I watched “Psycho II” for the first time in several years, I found myself just as excited and giddy as I was the first time I saw it. The film still looks as cinematically beautiful as it ever has in high-definition. Director Richard Franklin simultaneously pays respect to Alfred Hitchcock and adds a new chapter to the original. If imitation is the best form of flattery, Hitch would be blushing if he were here today watching the “Psycho II” Collector’s Edition.
22 years after being institutionalized for several murders (including his mother), Norman Bates (Anthony Perkins) returns to his home and the motel he ran. Settling back into normal life is made difficult when the sister (Vera Miles) of one of his victims begins taking drastic measures to have him sent back to the mental institute. The disappearance of some locals raise suspicions that Norman might be up to his old tricks again.
Franklin compels Director of Photography Dean Cundey to both mimic certain shots from the 1960 classic and come up with new ways to visually fray the edges of the audiences’ sanity. The angled shots of Norman Bates looking up at the house are some of the most unhinging moments in horror history. Cundey’s use of sweeping overhead shots are captivating as well.
The audio and video high-definition transfer makes seeing “Psycho II” on Blu-ray a treat. The picture quality is cleaner and clearer than it ever has been before. The 4.0 audio shines a spotlight on Jerry Goldsmith’s fabulous musical score and brings those stabbing sounds to the forefront even more.
Special features for the “Psycho II” Collector’s Edition include audio commentary with Screenwriter Tom Holland. There’s a 35-minute vintage video featuring interviews with the cast and crew from both “Psycho” and “Psycho II.” Audio interviews with Anthony Perkins, Vera Miles, and Director Richard Franklin can be heard while you’re watching the film. A theatrical trailer and TV spot can be found as well.
Fans of “Psycho II” couldn’t ask for more from this Collector’s Edition Blu-ray. A wonderful feature presentation and priceless bonus material make this a must-have. Scream Factory earns another gold star for delivering this classic follow-up to Alfred Hitchcock’s original in hi-def.
“Psycho II” is available on now on Blu-ray.
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