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Thursday, October 28, 2010

Scary trailer countdown, Oct. 28: 'Psycho' at the Plaza

As luck would have it, the scary trailer countdown to Halloween coincides with the Plaza Theatre's 50th anniversary screening of Psycho, Oct. 28-31 at 7:30 p.m.. Alfred Hitchcock's oft-imitated suspense thriller slashed so many rules for screen narratives and created so many new ones, it can be hard to appreciate how shocking and original it would've seemed to audiences in 1960. Psycho has a brilliant, almost trailer, although it's not conventionally frightening like most horror movie previews, which labor to cultivate a sense of dread, delivery sudden jolts, or both. For more than six minutes, Alfred Hitchcock puts his mordantly amusing persona to use, offering a tour of the Bates Motel as the scene of some unspecified crimes, and the clip is almost post-modern in the way it comes just to the brink of spoiling Psycho's famous scenes. Although primarily played for laughs, the director's descriptions serve to put some disturbing images in your head, and you may not be prepared for the startling final shot.

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