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Alfred Hitchcock and the Making of Psycho

3.87 of 5 stars 3.87  ·  rating details  ·  698 ratings  ·  111 reviews
Now a major motion picture! Thegripping behind-the-scenes look inside the classic suspense shocker—and the creative genius who revolutionized filmmaking.

First released in June 1960, Psycho altered the landscape of horror films forever. But just as compelling as the movie itself is the story behind it, which has been adapted as a movie starring Anthony Hopkins as Hitchcock
ebook, 224 pages
Published June 16th 2010 by Open Road Media (first published 1990)
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Wendy Darling
Jun 16, 2011 Wendy Darling rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Hitchcock fans, film buffs
After three decades, Alfred Hitchcock's Psycho still stands out as a masterpiece of suspense. June 16 marks the anniversary of the movie's 1960 release and it's a good opportunity to dive into the impressive story behind the film. I don't always have the patience to sit down and read an entire exhaustive biography, so I really enjoyed reading this fairly short, focused piece on one particular project.

The Crime Behind the Film

Alfred Hitchcock and the Making of Psycho traces the origin of the sto
I am a big fan of Alfred Hitchcock and the film "Psycho." I have read a lot about the making of the film and as such, I went into this book not knowing whether I would learn anything new about the film. Honestly, I was aware of much of what was discussed in this book, but what made this book such a great reading experience for me was the fact that it brought together all the different aspects that went into the making of the film together in one place in a way that allows one to truly appreciate ...more
Oct 22, 2013 Ed rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: all Alfred Hitchcock fans
Recommended to Ed by: I liked the movie PSYCHO and read Bloch's novel.
Everything you wanted to know about the filming of PSYCHO and then some sums up this gem of a book. It makes me want to re-watch PSYCHO sometime soon. Sir Alfred's droll wit and dark sense of humor shine through the best.
Ever since I first saw the movie, I've always been particularly taken with Hitchcock's Psycho. When I was younger I'd pour over the movie details, especially when I managed to get my hands on a book that gave a scene by scene guide of the movie. (It was all done picture by picture. I wish I could find a copy of that now!) The first time I watched it I still managed to be surprised by everything even when I knew the outcome. It was just that much of a testament to the genius & talent of Hitch ...more
Sean W.
Not that anybody was truly seeking any insight into Alfred Hitchcock's masterpiece that is Psycho, but if it sounds remotely interesting, consider Alfred Hitchcock and the Making of Psycho a must. This has been adapted as the film Hitchcock (2012); having seen that beforehand, I never would have guessed that what the book details is not the average film production, but, in fact, one director's obsessive creation of a legend that was to be nothing with the slightest emotion other than shock. The ...more
Alfred Hitchcock and the Making of Psycho by Stephen Rebello
Open Road
99 pages
Non-fiction; Hollywood
4/5 stars

Source: Received a free e-copy via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Read: Today is Alfred Hitchcock Day and I recently rewatched Psycho so I thought this would be a good way to celebrate.

This book is a good summation of the path Psycho took to becoming film. First a real-life crime inspired novelist Robert Bloch to write the novel that Hitchcock would end up optioning in order to
Lynn Hartter
I read this book in order to prepare for the upcoming "true" movie with Scarlett Johannsen, Jessica Biels, and Anthony Hopkins, which details the film-maker's transition from romantic comedy suspense stories to darker, more serious matter. Psycho, to me, is a classic thriller, not a horror movie; the breakaway knife only makes contact with flesh once and without blood. This movie is a character study and mystery, but told in a much different manner. . . after the financial disappointment of Vert ...more
Sarah Sammis
Alfred Hitchcock and the Making of Psycho by Stephen Rebello opens with Ed Gein. Taxidermy, furniture and clothing made of human flesh and bone, cannibalism and run down cluttered homes. If you see any of these motifs in film you owe them to one real life monster named Ed Gein. And Psycho was the first to draw creative inspiration from his crimes. Ed Gein, though, makes Norman Bates look like a pussycat.

From the true crime this reissued book about the making of Psycho goes through all the steps
This book is a clear winner. The first non-fiction I've read. But, the efforts taken by the author to collect this humongous amount of information about the movie and present it by way of an interesting narrative has to be lauded.

Although the book deals with the making of just one of his movies, you get to understand Alfred Hitchcock like you've lived alongside him.

Until now, Psycho, for me, was just another critically acclaimed movie of its times, which is just an OK picture now. But, this book
Grant Trevarthen
I have been a fan of Alfred Hitchcock and his many movies for years, and among my favorites is 'Psycho'.
Filmed in 1959, with Janet Leigh & Anthony Perkins in what has to be one of the most iconic movies of any genre.
This was a movie ahead of its time as it concerned issues such as Motherlove, Transvestitism and a graphic murder. There was strict censorship laws at the time and it was debated whether Leigh would appear nude in the shower, and how much the viewer would see, as it transpired
This is a good and very detailed "making of" book on Alfred Hitchcock's most notorious, if not necessarily his best, film Psycho. It's quite an interesting story on why Hitchcock made this film and covers pretty much all the areas of making the movie from the book it was based on to the marketing and its reception. But it's a snapshot from a much bigger life and if the reader would like something more substantial about the director I would recommend Hitch: The Life And Times And Alfred Hitchcock ...more
When I was a kid, mind you a kid too young to see the movie Psycho, the older boys in the neighborhood talked my mother into letting me go with them to see it.

They knew what they were doing because they had already seen it. Mother's initial reticence proved she knew best: I was too young to see it. But I toughed it out, the older boys probably expected I'd bolt.

There was no movie rating system then. No G, no PG, no PG13, no R, no NC17, no LNMNOP. We flew by the seat of our pants back then. If Yo
Alfred Hitchcock is quite a famous person. You may have heard of him. He has made somewhere around 50 films, a fair amount of them considered classics. As great as most of his films are, there is one in particular that was so great that it changed the world forever. If you can’t figure it out, I’m talking about the almighty Psycho.

Psycho is a brilliant film. This film is a prime example of why Hitchcock was called the Master of Suspense, with its plot twists, drama filled scenes, breath taking m
Adam Philips
I decided to go ahead and read Stephen Rebello's chronicle of the making of Alfred Hitchcock's game-changing movie "Psycho" before the new movie starring Anthony Hopkins comes out. So far it is very engaging and fascinating. I'm reading a first printing hardcover, originally published in 1990, and boy, the design really screams "1990s." That doesn't detract from the reading experience at all, fortunately.
As a huge Alfred Hitchcock fan, I really wish I had enjoyed this book more. However, I found the information to be dry, and a little repetitive. Informative? Yes. Interesting? Yes. Fascinating? Oh, for sure. But the delivery was a little on the drab side.

I chose to read this book after watching the movie "Hitchcock" and then reading the book "Psycho" by Robert Bloch. The movie was based off of this book. Obviously, movies made from dry biographies will generally be more interesting. Stephen Reb
SO so so boring...I couldn't bring myself to finish it. I'm a fan of Psycho but not a HUGE fan but the bottom line was that I didn't like the author's writing style at all!

Read my review @ Shivers of Horror
Fascinating story behind the movie that was the pinnacle of Hitchcock's career. Arguably the greatest director of that time basically made an indie horror flick (self-financed and marketed), and turned it into a worldwide juggernaut that changed his career (for better or worse), and movies as we know them, forever.
Excellent for Hitchcock lovers, with lots of cast and crew members contributing interviews. One thing that's striking to a contemporary reader is just how technically difficult analog filmmaking was. For the new generation, the title sequence is the kind of thing that any moderately talented digital artist could knock out quickly, using pre-loaded software. Saul Bass had actual pieces of card stock sliding across a table. It doesn't look that way to us because we aren't used to seeing it. I teac ...more
So did you know that today - March 12th - is Alfred Hitchcock Day? I didn't! But in staying with tradition, I've decided to review a recently released e-book on Hitchcock and the making of the movie Psycho. (P.S. - If you haven't seen this movie yet, I think you've been living in a cave - go watch it now!!)

I found this book to be just as riveting, interesting, and unique as Psycho itself! From the very first chapter, where you learn how the story of Pyscho came out (did you know it was based on
ALFRED HITCHCOCK and the making of PSYCHO is an extremely interesting account of the machinations behind the genius of the man who created the movie Psycho. The story is informative and tells us those "secret" tidbits of information that make these kinds of non-fiction stories successful. Stephen Rebello takes us on a walk behind the scenes and into the minds of the people responsible for the cult classic movie, "Psycho".

The making of Psycho takes the reader to the root of the "inspiration" of t
Rebecca Martin
This book was written about twenty years ago, so quite a lot of what is discussed is well-known to Hitchcock fans and afficionados. However, this is such a detailed and focused look at the background of the film, the piecing together of support and crews to make the film, the financial constraints on the film and why Hitchcock agreed to them, its marketing and enormous, unanticipated success that there is still much to learn from the story Rebello tells. Of particular interest to this reader is ...more
This book recounts the pressure and problems Hitchcock and crew encounter while making the film (Psycho). It all begins when Ed Gein, a serial killer who is brought to justice, it is all over the news and media. Then along comes Robert Bloch, author of Psycho, which I am yet to read. Bloch bases his characters on Ed Gein and his victims, not wanting to make it sound exactly like what really happened but after his book is published many things about the case are revealed and it turns out that a l ...more
Kevin Cecil
I started listening to this on my way to Brooklyn, while somewhat lost on the back roads of Pennsylvania. It was dark out, and the road was obstructed by a thick haze of mist. Every so often small rural houses were visible. It was the perfect atmosphere to begin an audiobook which opens with a detailed chapter on the murders and fetishes of Ed Gein. As the narrator told of Gein's grave robberies, lip collection, and skin suits, I felt more genuinely creeped out than I have been in years. It was ...more
So did you know that today - March 12th - is Alfred Hitchcock Day? I didn't! But in staying with tradition, I've decided to review a recently released e-book on Hitchcock and the making of the movie Psycho. (P.S. - If you haven't seen this movie yet, I think you've been living in a cave - go watch it now!!)

I found this book to be just as riveting, interesting, and unique as Psycho itself! From the very first chapter, where you learn how the story of Pyscho came out (did you know it was based on
From my blog: (\__/)nymfaux


I was absolutely super-psyched to find Stephen Rebello’s Alfred Hitchcock and the Making of Psycho.

I’ve watched Psycho before—Or, that is, I thought I’d watched it. But reading Rebello’s account was like watching the movie for the very first time.


I was absolutely drawn in from the very first page, from the horrifying real-life inspiration of the story, to the best-selling novel, throughout the amazing efforts that it took to make Psycho into Psycho, and the insta
May 01, 2013 Ollie rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Horror buffs and storytellers
Recommended to Ollie by: my bookclub
On one level, this book is about the making of "Psycho" - from the story based on Ed Gein's killings that germinated the novel of the same name to the massive cultural phenomenon it became upon release, almost turning into a success Hitchcock could never escape from. On another level, this book was to me a great example of how storytelling should work; how to craft a narrative, how to create characters, setting, plot and suspense - all through observing how Hitchcock handled his material.

Film bu
Aussiescribbler Aussiescribbler
This book, originally published in 1990, was the credited inspiration for Sacha Gervasi's film Hitchcock. Reading it confirmed my original suspicion that that film was almost entirely a work of fiction. The film centres around Hitchcock's relationship with his wife Alma Reville. Whitfield Cook, the screenwriter who did the original adaptation of Patricia Highsmith's Strangers on a Train for Hitchcock, is also a major character. Alma is only referred to a handful of times in the book, and Cook is ...more
After thoroughly enjoying the movie that lists this book as the source for the screenplay, I have to admit I was a little disappointed. And I shouldn't have been so easily duped. I know, as well as anyone, there is a little thing called 'artistic license' which allows people to add things that may not necessarily be true.
Anyway, back to the book. I think because it didn't follow with 'Hitchcock', the movie, it was a little harder for me to stick with, thus taking longer to finish. I will say th
For people who read this on their Kindle:
The book itself ends at 75% done. The last quarter is bibliography, index, credits, biographies, etc.
(Just in case you're trying to decide how late to stay up reading, this will give you a better idea of how near you are to the end.)

Thoughts while reading:
Every once in a while I hit something that makes me wonder if the author actually READ Robert Bloch's story, which is somewhat disconcerting...

The screenwriter seems very, one might even say overly, ple
Joy H.
Aug 05, 2013 Joy H. marked it as watched-film-only  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: biopic
Added 8/5/13.
I recently enjoyed the Netflix DVD of the film adaptation of this book. (I did not read the book.)
"Hitchcock" (2012)
"A love story between influential filmmaker Alfred Hitchcock and wife Alma Reville during the filming of Psycho in 1959."
"Iconic filmmaker Alfred Hitchcock struggles with his marriage, the censors, and the financiers of his 1960 film Psycho in this biopic. Driven to prove he still has an ed
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Careful how you review this one, might get flamed! 3 13 Feb 02, 2013 09:03PM  
  • Alfred Hitchcock: A Life in Darkness and Light
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  • The Dark Side Of Genius: The Life Of Alfred Hitchcock
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  • A Cinema of Loneliness: Penn, Stone, Kubrick, Scorsese, Spielberg, Altman
  • Showgirls, Teen Wolves, and Astro Zombies: A Film Critic's Year-Long Quest to Find the Worst Movie Ever Made
  • Visionary Film: The American Avant-Garde 1943-2000
  • Superman: The High-Flying History of the Man of Steel
  • Cronenberg on Cronenberg
  • The Gospel of the Living Dead: George Romero's Visions of Hell on Earth
  • Scorsese on Scorsese
  • Alfred Hitchcock
  • Dark City: The Lost World of Film Noir
  • Pre-Code Hollywood: Sex, Immorality, and Insurrection in American Cinema; 1930-1934
Stephen Rebello is a screenwriter, journalist, and the author of such books as Reel Art: Great Posters from the Golden Age of the Silver Screen, which was honored by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in 1999. Based in Los Angeles, he has contributed feature stories to such magazines as Cosmopolitan, GQ, More, and The Advocate, and currently serves as a Playboy contributing editor. St ...more
More about Stephen Rebello...
The Art of the Hunchback of Notre Dame The Art of Pocahontas The Art of Hercules: The Chaos of Creation Reel Art: Great Posters From The Golden Age Of The Silver Screen Come Hitchcock ha realizzato Psycho. Con un'intervista a Gus Van Sant

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