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Cinematic Psycho Sequels
By James Whittington, Saturday 7th April 2018

Everyone who has seen Alfred Hitchcock's monochrome masterpiece Psycho will know that how it created one of the most enduring horror icons of the 20th century, Norman Bates. Played to chilling perfection by Anthony Perkins and based on the novel of the same name by Robert Bloch which was first published in 1959 the movie was a benchmark in the horror/thriller genre and Hitchcock sent the rest of his career trying to match it.

Bates was a reflection, an amalgam of several real-life killers, most notably Ed Gein, whose ability to be in plain sight of his hometown whilst committing hideous crimes is almost as hideous as the crimes he committed. Much has been written about the movie Psycho, but what about the cinematic sequels? Often over-looked and even by some totally ignored, Psycho II and III have a lot to offer and gave Perkins the chance to flesh out his most character.

Psycho II was released in 1983, right at the tail-end of the first big slasher-mania run but could the granddaddy of the knife kill compete? Coming just a year after Robert Bloch's book of the same name but having no resemblance at all this was a brave idea, to bring back the world's most famous Mommy's Boy!

Director Richard Franklin, who apparently was inspired to become a director after seeing, amongst other things the original Psycho, only had four features under his belt but delivers the essence of the original whilst at the same time upping the violence and blood, bringing Tom Holland's script vividly to life. As a side note, look out for Tom in a cameo role as Deputy Norris. It was a box-office hit and though it took some purists time to adjust to seeing Bates in colour its rightly regarded as one of the best horror movie sequels made.

Psycho III arrived in 1986 and this time Perkins decided to sit in the director's chair. Brave you might say, seeing as though it was his directorial debut you could consider it crazy, but Perkins delivers a solid and emotional movie that gave fans a darker insight into Bates' situation, of his off-kilter mind-set and the duplicity in his tangled mind. Again, the film has nothing to do with Bloch's third Psycho novel, Psycho House which was published in 1990.

Set only a month after Psycho II, Norman finds himself falling in love and its this bizarre twist that split the audience at the time. Here we view Norman's softer side which at first seems at odds at to what has gone before but as we all know his evil will always conquer. Perkins would only direct one other feature which is a real shame as he shows signs of a very confident director.

Though there was a movie, Bates Motel in 1987 which didn't feature Perkins, a TV Movie followed and was very good too and we will look at that in a different feature as it wasn't given a cinematic release. There was also a scene for scene remake in 1998 but the least said about that the better. Another TV outing for Norman was Bates Motel, a series that ran for 5 seasons and dived directly into the relationship between a young Bates and his mother.

But apart from these it's the cinema releases with Perkins as the star that made the Psycho series such a success. Check out II, III and Psycho IV: The Beginning on Horror and tell us what you think.


Related show tags: PSYCHO II, PSYCHO III, PSYCHO IV: THE BEGINNING
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Acclaimed sci-fi thriller Radius amongst four UK TV premieres on Horror Channel in May
Posted on Tuesday 17th April 2018

The gates of Hell are well and truly opened on Horror Channel in May, as the UK's most popular TV destination for genre fans plays host to chilling Chinese legends, sinister sorcery, deadly zombies and a rampaging Arnold Schwarzenegger.

There are four prime-time UK TV premieres this month, headed by Caroline Labreche and Steeve Leonard's unusual and compelling sci-fi thriller Radius on the 25th.

Premiered at FrightFest in 2017, it weaves an ingenious plot from the moment Liam (Diego Klattenhoff) wakes from a car crash with no memory of who he is. As he makes his way into town to look for help, he finds only dead bodies, all with strange pale eyes. Liam's first assessment is that a virus is present in...

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John Krasinski talks directing and starring in 'A Quiet Place'
Posted on Friday 6th April 2018


In case you hadn't heard, A Quiet Place has opened in cinemas nationwide.

The film, starring real-life couple, John Krasinski (US adaptation of The Office and 13 Hours) and Emily Blunt (Sicario, Wind Chill and The Devil Wears Prada) takes place in a post-apocalyptic(-ish) environment, in which strange wild creatures that hunt by sound have destroyed a significant amount of the population.

Krasinski and Blunt's characters, husband and wife Lee and Evelyn try to lead a life with their family as quietly (and by that we mean literally) as possible, in able to ensure their survival.

We sat down with the director and one half of Krasinski-Blunt to talk about the film, what scares him the most, and which...

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The 10 best lines from the Evil Dead movies
Posted on Thursday 5th April 2018

Horror Channel is sponsoring a "groovy" night of gore on April 7th at the Stockport Plaza Cinema in conjunction with those fine folks of Grimmfest.

The Evil Dead Marathon will start at 1.30pm (doors at 1pm) and is made up of The Evil Dead (1981), Evil Dead II: Dead By Dawn (1987), Army Of Darkness (1992), and finally Evil Dead (2013). There's also prizes up for grabs and merch stall. More info on the event here.

But what is your favourite line from this amazing series of movies? Here's our Top 10!

10: Alright you primitive screwheads, listen up! You see this? This... is my Boomstick! (Army of Darkness, 1992)

9: What kind of a virus makes someone cut their face off with a ...

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Norman Bates stalks Horror this April
Posted on Wednesday 28th March 2018

Fans of Anthony Perkins and the Psycho franchise are in for a treat as Sunday nights in April are devoted to the network premieres of Psycho II, Psycho III, and Psycho IV: The Beginning. Each movie starts at 9pm.

Set twenty-two years after the famous murder of Marion Crane, Psycho II (showing April 1st) sees Norman Bates (Perkins) declared sane and allowed to return to his now dilapidated motel. But, when the murders start up again, Norman realises an old friend is awaiting his return - Mother! Co-starring Meg Tilly, Robert Loggia, and Dennis Franz, this sequel to the Hitchcock masterpiece is now viewed as an unmissable classic thanks to the way it carefully continues the legend without shying away from expa...

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Top 5 worst horror movie remakes!
Posted on Wednesday 21st March 2018

Remakes, love them or hate them if there's money to be made they'll always be with us. Hollywood loves to look back at past glories and try and wring some more blood out of a well rung stone. Here's my list of frightful fright-flicks that failed to restart an already dead franchise.

5: Poltergeist (2015) "They're here". The original Poltergeist movie from 1982 was a tour-de-farce of effects and atmosphere. Directed by Tobe Hooper with Steven Spielberg as writer and producer, it took the paranormal into new territory. Forward to 2015 and Gil Kenan is given the task of resurrecting the story. Poor guy, the film is a mish-mash of re-visited scenes and not so special effects. The scary clown has been given an update, but the movie lacks...

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Get infected this April on Horror
Posted on Tuesday 20th March 2018

April on Horror Channel sees an Infection Season spread across Saturday nights with a highly contagious collection of outbreak action, headed by the network premieres of Danny Boyle's 28 Days Later and the equally impressive sequel 28 Weeks Later, starring Robert Carlyle. There are also welcome re-showings for Breck Eisner's critically-acclaimed remake of George Romero's 1973 movie, The Crazies, and M. Night Shyamalan's boldly unsettling survival movie The Happening.

28 Days Later on the 7th was one of the most successful genre movies of 20...

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Top 5 horror movie remakes
Posted on Sunday 25th February 2018

Hollywood: a place of constant invention and where everything should be shiny and new. Well, sometimes for at the moment it seems to be looking to the past for inspiration. This is not always a bad thing as sometimes a remake (or re-imagining as they like to call it!) hits the spot so perfectly that it can be considered an equal to the original so here's our Top 5 remakes! Do you agree and which movies would make your own top 5?

5: Evil Dead (2013)
Fans of the original movie, The Evil Dead had been waiting years for a cinematic sequel. Rumour after rumour followed but no one expected a remake of the story especially when rookie director Fede Alvarez was given the job to bring it back to life. It was backed by Sam Raimi, Bruce Campbell and Robert Tapert and given a decent budget, but few fans expected it to be so good. Bloody, ultra-violent and incredibly fast paced, it...

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Unmissable movies on Horror this March
Posted on Sunday 25th February 2018

The nights may be getting lighter but we're turning to the dark side this March on Horror with a slate of premieres that will have you praying for the dawn. So, beware all you virgins, actors, wayward teens and heroic crusaders, Horror has something to get under your skin!

We start with the network premiere of Cherry Falls on the 2nd where a serial killer seems to be going after virgins, rather than promiscuous types! So, sex parties are the order of the day to try and survive! Sounds like a good idea to us. Then the next night we've a true classic which stars Christopher Walken, Chris Sarandon, Ava Gardner, Burgess Meredith, Sylvia Miles, and Eli Wallach, The Sentinel where a young actress (Cristina Raines) ...

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Top 5 werewolf movie transformations
Posted on Saturday 10th February 2018

Come on, admit it! The biggest reason you watch a werewolf movie is to see the much talked-about transformation. You know, the bit of the movie that usually gets all the film budget (no matter how big or small) and the sequence where the rest of the movie will be measured.

Here's our top 5 but what are yours? Don't forget to catch Horror's Season of the Wolf, Saturdays at 10.55pm?

The Wolf Man (1941)
Though not Universal's first werewolf movie, that was Werewolf of London in 1936, this was the biggie. Unleashed in 1941 it was a major success and made Lon Chaney Jr. a real star. His laconic take of a weary man cursed is truly engrossing but what probably makes the movie famous is the transformation scene, well the lack of it as unlike the sequels the main transformation is of his feet! There is a dissolve at the end, but this is backwards, wolf to man but its ...

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There's something in the trees... it's coming! Top 5 Werewolf Songs!
Posted on Friday 2nd February 2018

Of all the horror genres out there, probably the Werewolf genre has made the largest footprint on the charts. From Shakira's She Wolf in 2009 to Killer Wolf from Danzig in 1990, the hairy-side of horror has inspired many musical artists, obviously with varying levels of success.

In celebration of Horror's Season of the Wolf, here's our top 5 favourites from the last few decades.

No list worth its fur would start without Werewolves of London from Warren Zevon. Recorded in 1978 and taken from the album Excitable Boy, it's a mainstay of BBC Radio 2, whose listeners incidentally voted that it had the best opening line to a song. Its inclusion on the soundtrack to An American Werewolf in London gave it a cult status but hearing it in the Paul Newman/Tom Cruise 1996 flick The Color of Money gave it a new lease of life. The B-side, Roland the Headless Thompson Gunner was...

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The Howling - A franchise with bite
Posted on Sunday 28th January 2018

Based on Gary Bradner's novel of the same name, The Howling is one of those werewolf movies that dared to be more vicious than its predecessors and yet still retained a more traditional tone. Horror is proud to be showing this classic on Saturday 3rd February as part of our Season of the Wolf, so here's a quick timeline of The Howling franchise and personal opinions of the movies. Let us know if you agree via email and our social feeds.

Directed by Joe Dante in 1981, The Howling took the young director to new heights after cult hits Piranha in 1978 and Rock N' Roll High School the following year. Though the movie only took some of the ideas from the original story, it was strong enough to earn itself a lastin...

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Bark at the moon this February on Horror
Posted on Friday 26th January 2018

Horror is taking you deep into the woods during February with a selection of movies that celebrate the finest of fearsome flicks all about Lycanthropy, Season of the Wolf. Each Saturday at 10.55pm we're bringing you tales of terror that are dripping with blood and will have you barking at the moon with delight.

The season starts on the 3rd as Dee Wallace, Christopher Stone, Patrick Macnee and John Carradine battle a brutal beast in Joe Dante's superb feature, The Howling. A female reporter is attacked by a notorious serial killer and to get over her trauma she is sent to 'The Colony', a remote mountain resort. But there her problems really begin, as the residents are werewolves. We bring you contemporary h...

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