Bates Motel (1987)

Bates Motel (1987)





Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Bates Motel Photos

Movie Info

This busted TV pilot film is set in the sinister family-operated motel made infamous by Hitchcock's Psycho. Former mental patient Bud Cort inherits the motel from its cross-dressing owner Norman Bates (played in Psycho by Anthony Perkins, who wisely passed up this TV film). With the help of runaway teen Lori Petty, Cort renovates the motel and hopes to re-open for business. Unfortunately the joint is haunted, thus it attracts only devotees of the Supernatural. Bates Motel was aimed at teenagers, who turned away in droves.
Comedy , Drama , Horror
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:
Universal TV


Bud Cort
as Alex West
Lori Petty
as Willie
Moses Gunn
as Henry Watson
Gregg Henry
as Tom Fuller
Kurt Paul
as Norman Bates
Show More Cast

Critic Reviews for Bates Motel

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Audience Reviews for Bates Motel

Either the writer never actually saw Psycho or just chose to flagrantly ignore much of what transpired in the first. If they were trying to create an honest follow up, they started out with a buncha strikes against them. Inaccuracies aside, Bud Cort is quite good as the replacement "is he crazy/is he not?" figure and the kinda-sorta eccentric family he creates with a girl drifter and an old carpenter is pretty darn charming. There I said it. There's a couple of legitimately spooky moments but nearly every attempt at injecting humor into the proceedings falls flat and weakens the whole thing.

Vincent Pesce
Vincent Pesce

Low Budget, made for TV spin off of the Psycho series, Bates Motel is an ill fated attempt at reinventing the series. The film never takes off, and the film just ends up being your standard, made for TV train wreck that should be avoided. Psycho is one the defining horror classics, and it influenced countless filmmakers. The sequels weren't bad either, but none captured the essence of Hitchcock's harrowing original work. The idea might have been interesting, but there is just no substance to the film's story. The idea is a bit interesting I have to admit, but there can't be a Psycho film with Norman Bates. The cast is boring and what might have worked with the plot, just ends up failing because there are too many things that simply don't work here and end up falling flat. You simply can't have a Psycho spin off without Norman Bates, it just doesn't work. The script itself lacks anything to really terrify the viewer, and Bates Motel as a whole is just a dull, boring affair that fails to capture the vibe of the series. There is a significant lack of suspense and terror, thus it just never takes off, and cannot be salvaged. I wonder why they even attempted at trying to do a spinoff of the series; it just falls flat and doesn't deliver anything memorable or entertaining. This is a boring film, one that is just not worth your time. Don't expect much from this, this is a poorly made feature that tries to capture Psychos effective elements, but never delivers anything that will terrify viewers. Bates Motel is just a waste of time.

Alex roy
Alex roy

Super Reviewer


It's not in community with the other Psycho sequels nor does it focus on Norman Bates. It doesn't even feel like a Psycho film. The plot is slow and scrambled, the characters are pretty bland, and some of the scenes were just plain silly. I suppose I would call it a spin-off rather than a sequel, but there's not much to recommend about this one.

Wes Shad
Wes Shad

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