Horror to be Thankful for – American Psycho

Note: This entry is the second part of a continuous series in which I list, describe, ridicule, poke fun at, and sing my praises for horror films I am thankful for. Check for weekly updates until the end of November.

Mentally and emotionally, Patrick Bateman is undeniably calculating and cruel: He is a man living in a superficial world who desires more in his life, only finding that special something when killing others. American Psycho has become more than a passing fancy in my horror collection, watching the film numerous times and never growing tired of it.

Patrick Bateman is a Wall Street yuppie with a stunning trophy fiancée, obsessed with success, style, and status in the 1980s. He happens to be so much more: A psychotic killer who rapes, murders, and dismembers both strangers and acquaintances. It is both terrifying and chilling, American Psycho tells a simple tale of a man slipping deeper and deeper into madness. However, American Psycho also focuses on the materialism and superficial trends of the 1980s.

Top 5 Moments of the Film

1. In my mind, I have dubbed it simply as “The Routine,” which is featured in the beginning of the film. The character of Patrick Bateman goes through his daily routine of exercising, bathing, and preparing for the 9-5 business day. Facial masks and cleansers, such meticulous detail is given during his routine. And the scene brings forth my favorite lines of all time in American Psycho.

2. Business cards are more than business cards, they are statements. Not mere pieces of cardstock, those business cards are how each of those men are weighed and measured during a brief meeting. Patrick is desperate to fit in and stand out in the yuppie corporate world in New York, even with his violent tendencies he wants to be accepted in 1980s’ society.

3. “Do you like Huey Lewis and the News?” Patrick asks Paul Allen before he brutally kills the man in his living room with an axe. The song “Hip to Be Square” has never really been the same for me since the first time that I watched this film, which brings me to another conclusion. The music in American Psycho is amazing, so much 1980s pop and rock that I grew up with.

4. The chainsaw was a welcoming addition, but the manner in which the chainsaw is wielded is debatably strange and unique to American Psycho. Chainsaw in hand, Patrick runs after the prostitute completely naked, but with white sneakers adorning his feet. Why the hell did he put shoes on? It kills me every time he runs on-screen with those pristine white sneakers on his feet with blood over his face and his naked body.

5. The ending of American Psycho is amazing. It brings out so many questions to the viewer, especially when his lawyer believes that Paul Allen is still alive even after a hysterical voicemail from Patrick. Was everything that he did real? Or was everything all in his mind?

American Psycho makes the thankful list because it is a horror film that blurs the lines of the mind and the reality, uniquely subtle that the chance that everything was merely in Patrick’s mind never occurred to me the first time viewing the film. It is the picture of 1980s yuppie culture with psychological and murderous elements, Patrick Bateman is a psycho without remorse and without reason.

~ by nicmarray on November 10, 2009.

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