Alfred Hitchcock is known as the ‘master of suspense’ this title is blatantly visible in the shower scene of the film “Psycho” The use of cinematic elements at such a critical moment helps to heighten the suspense of the scene. Consider the use of cinematography, editing, and musical score in the most intense of moments and one sees how the mood of suspense is evident
At the start of the shower scene the audience follows Marion into the bathroom. We see her undressing to have a shower. It is very silent and we can just hear her taking off her gown. The shot is an eyelevel medium close up which makes us feel uncomfortable because we are close behind a naked woman and following her, which seems like we are intruding into this private space, Marion then enters the shower, ready to clean herself of her sins and guilt, we cannot hear anything except for the running water, and this may distract us and Marion if someone is nearby. However, Hitchcock then cuts to an eyelevel medium close up in which we see Marion rinsing herself. This is a realistic shot because the camera is on the bathroom floor on the side of the shower watching and we can see her calm facial expression, so we relax as well, this then forces us to take our guards down, allowing the audience feel the ultimate thrill of Hitchcock’s film. The camera is then placed in front of her, inside the wall, and Hitchcock makes us feel uncomfortable and tight as if we are trapped in the shower with her, through the translucent shower curtain, we see the door open, With her back to the shower curtain, we can spot a shadowy figure coming from behind. The shock comes when the dark figure suddenly tears the shower curtain and shrill high-pitched music begins from sharp shrieking, violin strings. The shrill music plays a large part in creating absolute terror, as does the silhouette of the figure that is revealed because the face is shadowed and we cannot see it. The killer is on the left or more dominant side of the...
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