78/52: Hitchcock's Shower Scene

Critics Consensus

78/52: Hitchcock's Shower Scene takes a look at one of modern cinema's most memorable moments, offering insights of value to cineastes and casual viewers alike.



Total Count: 77


Audience Score

User Ratings: 1,149
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Movie Info

The screeching strings, the plunging knife, the slow zoom out from a lifeless eyeball: in 1960, Alfred Hitchcock's Psycho changed film history forever with its taboo-shattering shower scene. With 78 camera set-ups and 52 edits over the course of 3 minutes, Psycho redefined screen violence, set the stage for decades of slasher films to come, and introduced a new element of danger to the moviegoing experience. Aided by a roster of filmmakers, critics, and fans--including Guillermo del Toro, Bret Easton Ellis, Jamie Lee Curtis, Eli Roth, and Peter Bogdanovich--director Alexandre O. Philippe pulls back the curtain on the making and influence of this cinematic game changer, breaking it down frame by frame and unpacking Hitchcock's dense web of allusions and double meanings. The result is an enthralling piece of cinematic detective work that's nirvana for film buffs.

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Critic Reviews for 78/52: Hitchcock's Shower Scene

All Critics (77) | Top Critics (17) | Fresh (68) | Rotten (9)

  • Philippe's geekiness is infectious. His passion for film shines through most when he invites some of his interviewees-like horror nerd Elijah Wood and his friends-to watch the film on camera and comment on its foreshadowing and subtle motifs.

    Nov 16, 2017 | Full Review…
  • Hitchcock's shower scene may never leave the pop culture of fear it helped create.

    Nov 9, 2017 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…
  • The infamous shower scene in Alfred Hitchcock's Psycho gets taken apart, fabulously dissected, then reassembled for this expansive and essential Hollywood documentary named after the scene's 78 camera set-ups and 52 edits.

    Nov 2, 2017 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

    Kevin Maher

    Times (UK)
    Top Critic
  • A 30 minute film stretched to feature length.

    Oct 30, 2017 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…
  • Obsessive but accessible, the deepest dive imaginable into one of the most celebrated scenes in movie history, the documentary "78/52" looks at a brief three minutes of cinema the way it's never been looked at before.

    Oct 19, 2017 | Full Review…
  • Alexandre O. Philippe's close reading of the Psycho shower scene is as refreshingly fun and perceptive as his documentary's name (referring to Alfred Hitchcock's 78 camera setups and 52 edits over three violent minutes) is eggheaded and clinical.

    Oct 13, 2017 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for 78/52: Hitchcock's Shower Scene

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