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American Psycho (2000)


Duration 1h 41m Rating (UK) 18
Source of story A book of the same name by Bret Easton Ellis
Director Mary Harron
Writers/Script Mary Harron, Guinevere Turner
Starring Christian Bale, Justin Theroux, Josh Lucas, Chloë Sevigny, Reese Witherpoon, Samantha Mathis, Jared Leto, Willem Dafoe, Cara Seymour, Krista Sutton,

Elevator Pitch: Patrick Bateman is one of a group of young VPs mostly involved in Mergers and Acquisitions, working in a luxury office in New York in 1987. They vie with each other for their ability to make reservations at exclusive retaurants, and the wonderfulness of their business cards, but Bateman is different. In a secret life his murders homeless people and, because he is envious of the business card produced by Paul Allen, dispatches him with a chromed woodsman’s axe. Then he moves on to killing prostitutes, even though the disappearance of Allen is being investigated by a private detective.

Content: There is sex and nudity, drinking, drug taking and murders with a variety of actual and improvised weapons. But apart from that, the young VPs meet and compare notes with a vitually continuous stream of complete nonesense, usually in expensive eating and drinking locations, where the restauranteurs compete for the weirdness of the dishes and the menus. Bateman meets his fiancee occasionally and they exchange unimportant info, and even when he decides to leave her she takes no notice. There is frequent voice-over to keep us up to date with his thoughts.

A View: I had seen this film many years ago. I did not remember the details, or the denoument, but its reputation goes before it. In the end I had to go to the internet to find out what people thought about it, and there is video explaining about how it goes. Not really surprisingly it polarised the critics, some thinking it was great others exactly the opposite, but it just comes out as a winner on Rotten Tomatoes. I am almost encouraged to read the book which is billed as a satire, so maybe that is what American Psycho is; so is it really a slasher film? It is probably worth a download price. You won’t find out the answer but you might develop a view.

Additional Info: This movie spent years in development hell with all sorts of people attached at various times, at once with Leonardo DiCaprio. Can you imagine?

About Victor R Gibson

Author of this site three technical books and two novels


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