The first and better of two movies about Alfred Hitchcock I watched within a couple of days of each other (the second being The Girl). For a while at the start I thought I’d be too distracted by Anthony Hopkins’ performance and it would remain a passable impersonation rather than an actual piece of acting. However, eventually I got past this and enjoyed both what he was doing and what the movie was about: his relationship with his wife Alma Reville and the troubles he went through to make Psycho. The solid performances – not just from Hopkins, but also from Helen Mirren as Reville and Scarlett Johansson as Janet Leigh – are key to the success of the movie. Hitchcock’s interactions with his female actresses are done well, especially his relationship with Leigh (the scene featuring the filming of Psycho’s shower scene is particularly good). I could have lost some of the stuff with Danny Huston as a writer Reville collaborates with, and the sequences featuring Hitchcock’s delusions or visions of Ed Gein don’t really work. There’s a moment of triumph towards the end, featuring Hitchcock listening outside a theatre, that is a joy to behold. Look out for the original Karate Kid, Ralph Macchio, in a small role (a cameo, really) as Psycho screenwriter Joseph Stefano.