Hit or Miss

American Psycho.

Jeff and I caught the matinee of American Psycho yesterday. Hm. Wasn’t nearly as gruesome as I had expected. Also, it was a lot funnier – even if a lot of it was nervous laughter from the audience.

Like everyone else, I can’t picture Leonardo Dicapprio having done the role. I think Christian Bale aquitted himself pretty well – even if a generation of Freudists will have a field day with his chainsaw scene.

I really have to wonder though if I would have found it more gruesome if not for the progression of sex and violence in recent films. I think Pulp Fiction was probably quite a bit more violent – but if I hadn’t ever seen it, I would have been more shocked by American Psycho.

SPOLIER: Anyone who thinks at the end that the murders were all in his mind is fooling themself. While I’m pretty shallow and don’t normally go in for all the psycho-babble of many films, I do think this movie was an interesting look at white, upperclass privilege and the atrocities that are covered up by its members.

2 responses so far (Respond)

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I agree with you that the murders did happen. Everyone is saying the end is some kind of David Fincher prank but what really happens is that his lawyer doesn’t know who he is — he confuses him with somebody else, just as somebody else confused Bateman for someone else in the company. These people are so shallow and cookie-cutter that they are completely interchangeable. The murders did happen – it wasn’t in his mind. At least that’s my take on it. I haven’t read the book.

Tracy | 18 Apr 2000
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Having both read the book (twice) and seen the film (countless times), I kind of disagree with you on the matter of whether the murders are in Bateman’s head, or not. Reason: Timothy Price (Brice in the film). In the book it is pretty clear that he is the guy Patrick looks up to, admires perhaps, and all of a sudden he vanishes – when the murders start. In the film version they added (and later cut) a scene to explain Price’s “disappearance” (as seen on DVD). I think that Bateman just abandons Price from his mind, out of his environment, because he wants to be something he can’t be when Price is around. In the end, when there is nothing more to achieve for Patrick, Price comes back (and only drinks water…). And I don’t want to start on why all these people around Bateman never notice anything at all – even the shallowest person would see (or smell) that there is something foul going on. Anyway – I guess it’s all debatable and this is just my point of view. I certainly enjoyed reading the book – yes, call it sick, but I think it’s hilarious – and (surprise, surprise!) loved the film, so, there you go.

Malfoy | 19 Nov 2000