Friday, May 08, 2015

OK, so you forgot to book a place for Mother's Day and now the good places are booked up? If you're in the NYC area, here's a great way to celebrate


And even if you're not in the NYC area, if
you're resourceful, you can do this yourself

In the history of cinema, what film says "Happy Mother's Day" more purely from the heart than Alfred Hitchcock's Psycho? This, of course, is Anthony Perkins as Norman Bates, a boy who really loves his mom.

by Ken

Some of you may object that I've already had my crotchety say on the closing-in-on-us Mother's and Father's Days. But that was before I'd experienced the full horror of spending hours every day clearing my e-mailbox of the barrage of too-exciting-for-words Mother's Day offers.

Speaking of horror . . . .

That was also, I think, before I noticed, or at least took proper notice of, what the Museum of the Moving Image in Astoria, Queens, has lilned up for the big day: the first part of a two-part cinematic celebration, Horror Mother's Day and Horror Father's Day. Coming up Sunday is a triple bill of -- wait for it -- Psycho, Rosemary's Baby, and The Brood. How cool is that? On a day like that, smart mothers may deny having offspring. (Schedule conflicts make it impossible for me to catch Psycho or Rosemary's Baby, much as I'd enjoy seeing them again. But I've never seen The Brood, so that works out okay!)

Don't think MoMI is singling out Mom. Dad will get his turn too, and I'll try to remember to give you some links before we leave this evening. But this weekend, it's Mom's turn. (The films are $12 for adults, which includes free museum admission, and free for members "at the Film Lover level and above. Advance booking online is not only possible but highly recommended; see the individual listings for links.)

Of course, if you're not within striking distance of MoMI but you have access to a good DVD or streaming source, you can re-create the Mother's Day and Father's Day horrors for yourself.


Early in 2013 a tape from 1964 was discovered in BBC archives in which Alfred Hitchcock (seen here on-set) claimed that Psycho had always been intended as a comedy! As Xan Brooks told readers of The Guardian, the Master of Horror says on the tape, "I was horrified to find some people took it seriously."
Sunday, May 10, 1:30pm
Part of Horror Mother's Day and Horror Father's Day

Dir. Alfred Hitchcock. 1960, 109 mins. 35mm. With Anthony Perkins, Janet Leigh, Vera Miles. Norman Bates, anxious proprietor of the Bates Motel, is horror cinema’s ultimate momma’s boy in Alfred Hitchcock’s shocker masterpiece. But as Norman explains about his mother to the lovely blonde guest, “She isn’t quite herself today.”

Rosemary's Baby

Mia Farrow as Rosemary
Sunday, May 10, 4pm
Part of Horror Mother's Day and Horror Father's Day

Dir. Roman Polanski. 1968, 136 mins. DCP. With Mia Farrow, John Cassavetes, Ruth Gordon. Roman Polanski turned the stately Dakota into Manhattan’s most infamous apartment house in his unsettling horror classic. Mia Farrow is the unfortunate mother-to-be, married to a sketchy Broadway actor (played by John Cassavetes) and possibly carrying an antichrist in her womb. Ruth Gordon steals the show as the sinister next-door neighbor.

The Brood

Sunday, May 10, 7pm
Part of Horror Mother's Day and Horror Father's Day

Dir. David Cronenberg. 1979, 92 mins. New 35mm print! With Oliver Reed, Samantha Eggar, Art Hindle. David Cronenberg made The Brood after a painful divorce, and described the film as a “fantastical Kramer vs. Kramer.” The mother is involved in “psychoplasmics,” a treatment that leads to her literally (and graphically) giving birth to her rage. Howard Shore’s musical score pays homage to Bernard Herrmann’s music for Psycho.


• Charles Laughton's Night of the Hunter (1955) at 2pm
• Georges Franju's Eyes Without a Face (1960) at 4:30pm
• and a true Father's Day epic, Stanley Kubrick's The Shining (1980), at 6:30pm

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