american psycho

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Post on 11-Apr-2017



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American Psycho is a psychological thriller which is distributed and financed by Lion Gate Films. The company is a Canadian entertainment distributer of many films that originated in Vancouver, British Columbia in 1995. It was found by Frank Giustra. The companies name is shown for 25 seconds, which shows the importance of it.


The films name is shown after 1 minute of the start of the film. The name is shown for 7 seconds and is in capital letters.

The credits and titles that are shown at the beginning of the film appear in order of power. E.g. the financer of the film coming first and the make-up crew coming last. Each credit is shown for 4-5 seconds.

Camera Angles/Movements/Shots:

At the beginning of the film, there is a low angle shot used, where the camera focuses on the food that has been laid out on the table. From this, the setting of the film is exposed. We can see that the beginning scene of the film is set in a restaurant and the food that has been put on the table is probably for the opening characters of the film.

Miss-en-scene The camera then moves on to another dish on the table. This is a dessert that is eaten by a man. The man is wearing a black leather glove. The use of the black glove shows negative connotations about the character. As everyone else is eating with their bare hands, however this man is eating with a glove on. Also, the red raspberry sauce also gives negative connotations about this character. As red is symbolic for danger and passion, it highlights the genre of the film.


There are two types of lighting used in the opening of the film. 1) Low Key lighting: this type of lighting is used where the characters are shown in dark costumes. I.e. black long leather coats. The use of the low lighting is used to help identify the genre of the film. 2) High Key lighting: this type of lighting is used to clearly help identify the villain of the film. The villain is shown as wealthy and the use of the high key lighting helps identify him as a normal part of the high class society.


In the opening of the film, there is only non-digetic sound used, where we only hear music in the background. The music helps set the scene and identify the genre of the film. The music is very sinister and classy.


1) Who is the hero and who is the villain and how do you know?We are not introduced to a hero in opening of the film. However the villain is possibly the character of Patrick. His use of abusive language and the way he looks and talks to women shows this. Hes a very sinister character.

2) Where is the story set and what does this tell you about the genre of the film? The story is set in a city of America where the characters have been shown as wealthy people. We havent been shown any poor areas of the city and are only shown the higher class people. The genre of the film is identified quite clearly as mainly all psychological thrillers have set their stories in cities.

3) How many principle characters?In the opening of the film we are introduced to many characters. However the main one is Patrick as when we see him in the opening. He later introduces himself to us (audience). He is the only character that talks about his daily routine and what he likes and doesnt like. Also as the story is told by him, we can see that he has an important role in the film, perhaps a negative role in the film.

4) How is the story told? Chronologically or not? What is the effect?The movie is told chronologically as the villain attacks the innocent women and someone come along to stop him. The effect that this has is that the audience know what to expect from a psychological thriller. It follows the trend of all psychological thrillers.

5) What questions are you left with?From the opening of the film, we are left with many questions such as: Why is Patrick so obsessed with the way women dress? Why does he look at women in a sinister way? Why is the story told from his point of view? Why does he threaten to kill the bar maid over such a minor issue?