Psycho (1998 film)

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Psycho is a 1998 film about a secretary who is on the run after stealing money from her employers, and her encounter with a profoundly disturbed motel owner. It is a remake of Alfred Hitchcock's 1960 classic.

Directed by Gus Van Sant. Screenplay written Joseph Stefano; Based on the novel by Robert Bloch.
A recreation of the nightmare that started it all... Taglines

Norman Bates[edit]

  • A boy's best friend is his mother.
  • Hate the smell of dampness, don't you? It's such a, I don't know, creepy smell.
  • A hobby should pass the time, not fill it.
  • I don't set a fancy table, but my kitchen's awful homey.
  • Mother! Oh God! Blood! Blood!
  • She might have fooled me, but she didn't fool my mother.
  • I'm not a fool. I'm not capable of being fooled! Not even by a woman.
  • I think I must have one of those faces you can't help believing.
  • Oh, we have twelve vacancies. Twelve cabins, twelve vacancies. They, uh, they moved away the highway.

Marion Crane[edit]

  • [to Sam] You make respectability sound so disrespectful.
  • Headaches are like resolutions. You forget them as soon as they stop hurting.

Detective Milton Arbogast[edit]

  • Well, if it doesn't jel, it isn't aspic, and this ain't jelling.
  • Oh, someone has seen her, all right. Someone always sees a girl with $400,000.
  • We're always quickest to doubt people who have a reputation for being honest.


Dr. Fred Simon: Now to understand it the way I understood it, hearing it from the mother... That is from the mother half of Norman's mind, you have to go back ten years... to the time when Norman murdered his mother and her lover. He was already dangerously disturbed. Had been ever since his father died. His mother was a clinging, demanding woman, and for years the two of them lived as if there was no one else in the world. Then she met a man and it seemed to Norman that she 'threw him over' for this man. That pushed him over the thin line... and he killed them both. Matricide is probably the most unbearable crime of all — most unbearable to the son who commits it. So he had to erase the crime, at least in his own mind. He stole her corpse... and a weighted coffin was buried. He hid the body in the fruit cellar. Even treated it to keep it as well as it would keep. And that still wasn't enough. She was there, but she was a corpse. So he began to think and speak for her. At times, he could be both personalities, carry on conversations. At other times, the mother half took over completely. He was never all Norman, but he was often only mother. [to Lila] When he met your sister, he was touched by her... and aroused by her. He wanted her. That set off his 'jealous mother' and 'mother' killed the girl. Whenever reality came too close, when danger and desire threatened that illusion, he dressed up, even to a cheap wig he bought. He'd walk around the house, sit in her chair, speak in her voice. He tried to be his mother. And now... he is.

[last lines]
Norman Bates' Mother: [in police custody, as Norman is thinking] It's sad when a mother has to speak to condemn her own son. I can't allow then to think I would commit murder. They'll put him away now as I should have years ago. He was always bad, and in the end he intended to tell them I killed those girls and that man, as if I could do anything but just sit and stare like one of his stuffed birds. They know I can't move a finger, and I won't. I want to just sit there and be quiet just in case they suspect me. They're probably watching me. Well, let them. Let them see what kind of person I am. I'm not even going to swat that fly. I hope they are watching... they'll see. They'll see and they'll know and they'll say "Why, she wouldn't even harm a fly..."


[first lines]
Sam Loomis: You never did eat your lunch, did you?
Marion Crane: I better get back to the office. These extended lunch hours give my boss excess acid.
Sam Loomis: Why don't you call your boss and tell him you're taking the rest of the afternoon off? It's Friday, anyway - and hot.
Marion Crane: What do I do with my free afternoon? Walk you to the airport?

Marion Crane: Oh, we can see each other. We can even have dinner but respectably in my house with my mother's picture on the mantel and my sister helping me broil a big steak for three.
Sam Loomis: And after the steak, do we send Sister to the movies? Turn Mama's picture to the wall?

Norman Bates' Mother: No! I tell you no! I won't have you bringing in some young girl in for supper! By candlelight, I suppose, in the cheap erotic fashion of young men with cheap erotic minds!
Norman Bates: Mother, please...!
Norman Bates' Mother: And then what? After supper? Music? Whispers?
Norman Bates: Mother, she's a stranger. She's hungry, and it's raining out!
Norman Bates' Mother: [mockingly] "Mother, she's just a stranger"! As if men don't desire strangers! As if.. ooh, I refuse to speak of disgusting things, because they disgust me! You understand, boy? Go on, go tell her she'll not be appeasing her ugly appetite with my food or my son! Or do I have to tell you because you don't have the guts?
Norman Bates: [shouts] Mother, shut up! Shut up!

Marion Crane: Wouldn't it be better if you... if you... put her someplace?
Norman Bates: Do you mean an institution? A madhouse? People always call a madhouse "someplace", don't they? "Put her in someplace."
Marion Crane: I'm sorry. I didn't mean it to sound uncaring. I...
Norman Bates: What do you know about caring? Have you ever seen the inside of one those places? The laughing and the tears, and the cruel eyes studying you. My mother in there? But she's harmless. She's as harmless as one of these stuffed birds.
Marion Crane: I am sorry. I only felt... I...
Norman Bates: You felt what?
Marion Crane: It seems that she was... she's hurting you. I meant well.
Norman Bates: People always mean well. They cluck their thick tongues and they shake their heads and they suggest, oh, so very delicately... [calms down] Of course, I've suggested it myself.

Norman Bates: It's not as if she were a maniac or a raving thing. She just goes a little mad sometimes. We all go a little mad sometimes. Haven't you?
Marion Crane: Yes. Sometimes just one time can be enough. Thank you.
Norman Bates: Thank you, Norman.
Marion Crane: Norman.

Lila Crane: She left home on Friday. I was in Tuscon over the weekend and I haven't heard from her since, not even a phone call. Look, if you too are in this thing together, I don't care — It's none of my business — but I want to talk to Marion and I want her to tell me it's none of my business. And then I'll go!
Sam Loomis: Bob! Run out and get yourself some lunch, will you?
Bob Summerfield: Oh, that's okay, Sam, I bought with me.
Sam Loomis: Run out and eat it!

Sheriff Al Chambers: Your detective told you he couldn't come right back because he was goin' to question Norman Bates' mother. Right?
Lila Crane: Yes.
Sheriff Al Chambers: Norman Bates' mother has been dead and buried in Greenlawn Cemetery for the past 10 years!
Mrs. Eliza Chambers: I helped Norman pick out the dress she was buried in. Blue Bay.
Sheriff Al Chambers: It ain't only local history, Sam. It's the only case of murder and suicide on the Fairvale ledgers. Mrs. Bates poisoned this guy she was... involved with... when she found out he was married. Then she took a helpin' of the same stuff herself. Strychnine. Ugly way to die.
Mrs. Eliza Chambers: Norman found them dead together... [whispers] in bed.

Lila Crane: Look, that old woman, whoever she is, she told Arbogast something. I want her to tell us the same thing.
Sam Loomis: Hold it, you can't go up there.
Lila Crane: Why not?
Sam Loomis: Bates.
Lila Crane: Then let's find him. One of us can keep him occupied while the other gets to the old woman.
Sam Loomis: You'll never be able to hold him still even if he doesn't want to be held. And, I don't like you going into that house alone.
Lila Crane: I can handle a sick old woman!


  • A recreation of the nightmare that started it all...
  • A new vision of the classic nightmare.
  • The horrifying story of a boy and his mother.
  • Check in. Unpack. Relax. Take a shower.
  • We all go a little mad sometimes... yes... sometimes once is enough.

Main cast[edit]

Actor Role
Vince Vaughn Norman Bates
Anne Heche Marion Crane
Julianne Moore Lila Crane
Viggo Mortensen Sam Loomis
William H. Macy Milton Arbogast
Robert Forster Dr. Fred Stone
Philip Baker Hall Sheriff Al Chambers
Anne Haney Mrs. Eliza Chambers
Chad Everett Tom Cassidy
Rance Howard George Lowery
Rita Wilson Caroline Wilson
James Remar Policeman
James LeGros Charlie LeGros

External links[edit]

Encyclopedic article on Psycho (1998 film) on Wikipedia

  Novels     Psycho  (1959) · Psycho II  (1982) · Psycho House  (1990)  
  Films     Psycho  (1960) · Psycho II  (1983) · Psycho III  (1986) · Psycho  (1998)  
  Television     Films     Bates Motel  (1987) · Psycho IV: The Beginning  (1990)  
  Series     Bates Motel  (2013–17)  
  Miscellaneous     Books     Alfred Hitchcock and the Making of Psycho  (1990) · Robert Bloch's Psychos  (1997)  
  Films     The Psycho Legacy  (2010) · Hitchcock  (2012)  
  Other     Psychopathy · Psychosis