By EW Staff
October 16, 2004 at 04:00 AM EDT
Psycho: Everett Collection

”Psycho” made our countdown of the 13 scariest movies of all time

The mother of all scary movies (and don’t even think of judging Psycho based on Gus Van Sant’s remake). Many of its most renowned features are readily apparent: those startling cuts (more than 50 in the shower sequence alone), Anthony Perkins’ neurotic mama’s boy, Bernard Herrmann’s shrieking-violins score. But Psycho‘s sneakiest tricks manifest themselves more subtly. Take director Alfred Hitchcock’s decision to use a handful of different stabbers in Janet Leigh’s slice-and-dice sequence: ”He kept changing it so the audience wouldn’t be able to get a fix on Mother,” says Leigh, who spent seven days in that shower. ”At one point it was Tony’s stand-in, at one point it was a woman. Never Tony.” Bottom line: It still works.

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  • R
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  • 109 minutes
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