Oscar-winning director Steven Soderbergh (Ocean's Eleven) tapped into his years of editing experience for a strange and creepy experiment that surfaced this week on his website Extension 765: a feature-length fusion of Alfred Hitchcock's 1960 classic Psycho and Gus Van Sant's controversial shot-by-shot color remake from 1998. The end result is titled, not surprisngly, Psychos.
I had to put aside my apprehension about Van Sant's oddball vanity project when digging into this one, but it was well worth the effort; Soderbergh has carefully aligned the two films (which already sync up very closely, as Van Sant was consciously copying the original's pacing and tempo) so that key scenes from both are often shown overlapping... with Marion Crane's legendary shower murder forming the centerpiece (naturally) of the entire project.
While Soderbergh removed the color from most of Van Sant's version to match Hitchcock's, that scene is the only one he left as-is... which creates an even more dramatic juxtaposition with the original, sometimes lining up shots in exact detail, while other times revealing creepy double-exposures between the two Marions (Janet Leigh & Anne Heche) whenever the cuts don't quite match.
The two films' soundtracks are often mixed together as well, creating an even more disturbing effect... which I'm glad he didn't sustain for the entire running time, as it probably would've given me a helluva headache.
You can watch the complete Psychos at Extension 765, and here's a little preview... and while you're in a stabby Psycho mood, check out this guest cast preview for the new season of Bates Motel!