Psycho IV: The Beginning (1990)

Directed by: Mick Garris

Written by: Joseph Stefano


Anthony Perkins ... Norman Bates
Henry Thomas ... Young Norman Bates
Olivia Hussey ... Norma Bates
CCH Pounder ... Fran Ambrose
Warren Frost ... Dr. Leo Richmond
Donna Mitchell ... Connie Bates
Thomas Schuster ... Chet Rudolph

Speacial Appearance:

John Landis ... Mike Calveccio

Release Date: Made-for-Cable: November 10, 1990

*Images courtesy at:







Norman Bates (Anthony Perkins) who is supposedly cured this time around with a loving wife named Connie (Donna Mitchell) who wored at the sanitarium, phones up a radio station under a different named and tells the station about his life story which really grabs the attention on the head D.J. named Fran Ambrose (CCH Pounder) who tries to keep him on to talk about it all.
He goes into the story when he was a kid and his first killing after the murder of his mother and with a flirtatious little brat named Gloria (Bobbi Evers) who tried to seduce him and then goes into a history of what happened after his father's death as a child and then growing up with his mother Norma (Olivia Hussey) and her verbally abusive attitude towards him, her lustful behavior and trying to make out that he's Mama's little girl instead of a boy and locking him in a closet. Not only that she has an affair with a local bartender named Chet Rudolph (Thomas Schuster) as he makes his life just as terrible causing him to snap.
After discussing all of this he thinks that he is not free after his wife is impregnated thinking that there will be another killer in the family. Will he lose it again and kill the only woman that loved him?


There is a nice shot on Norman Bates with his back turned talking on a phone to the radio station and then turning around to reveal himself and speaking a little coldly too.
We have a nice flashback that involves the younger Norman Bates at the hotel and a good presence on supporting character Holly flirting with him and acting like a nosey brat.
There's a good shot on her looking around the house and hiding around in the house. A good shot on her creeping up to a doorway and suddenly Norman appears with a stern attitude which makes you jump a bit.
Good shot on Norman in Mother's room taking a wig and going to another room.
We have a nice shot on Holly approaching the room and trying to take a look at Mother and suddenly Norman approaching and dressed as mother raising a kitchen knife and heaving it down along with a camera shot looking down on her screaming.
A good close up shot on a radio DJ Fran Ambrose looking disturbed by this news and taking a drag of her cigarette which takes place present day.
We also have a nice setting with Norma Bates throwing open a blanket and setting down for a picnic and seeing her expressions as well as Norman Bates as a child looking a little disappointed. There are good shots on the two of them rolling around.
A nice camera shot with Norma and sweat pouring down her face. An effective moment when Norman rubs some oil on her and then there's some good blocking by the two of them rolling around lustfully and things look great when she is snapping suddenly and accusing him about it all which looked disturbing.
There's terrific discussions with Fran and Dr. Leo Richmond in the radio station about the person on the phone could possibly be Norman Bates.
A good shot looking up on Norman during present day by washing his face.
Nice moment with Chet Rudolph trying to do some boxing matches with Norman as he acts hestitant and Chet taunting him along with a swinging punch. A good camera shot looking up at both Chet and Norma looking down.
We have a perfect struggling moment with Gloria trying not to get strangled as Norman dressed as Mother.
There's great intense quarrelling between Fran and Leo at the station about Norman Bates and keeping him on line. This of course was taking place present day.
A nice shot on Norman making some iced tea and then pouring poison in it along with carrying it up the stairs.
A good shot on Norman peeking at the side of the bedroom door along with Norma dumping a bit of iced tead on her and rubbing it acting lustfully.
A real disturbing moment with Norma on a chair in a cellar and slowly dying from the poison gasping out along with a nice surprise attack by Chet.
A perfect moment with Fran trying to keep Norman on the phone when he snaps and tells her he's going to kill his wife along with a great close up shot on his mouth trying to shout his name with a perfect camera shot on Norman slamming the phone on the receiver.
A nice shot on Connie Bates opening her car door and a good jumping shot on an umbrella opening up towards her which was done by Norman during present day.
A good conversation between the two of them inside the Bates house as she tries to sympathise with him.
There's also another good moment with Norman coming towards her with a knife and she cries as he stops which looked very impressive.
A nice chasing around moment with the two of them as well which looked incredibly suspenseful.
We have perfect hallucination sequences that involves Norman during present day by burning the house down which involved Norma, Chet, Holly and Gloria as it gives you that perfect haunting type of feel to it.
Bottom line is that this is a terrific sequel / prequel which almost met up to the original film as it was great to see Norman Bates' history as it was about time too. Everyone did marvellous for this flick as it is very suspenseful and disturbing too as the story was well focused during every scene of the film. I was glad to see Mother before she was killed and what she was like to her psychotic son. All of this was very much like the life on Ed Gein which is the reason they made the original Psycho. The ending is very heartwarming and made it a perfect ending to the series as well.

The acting is very good as we have good ole Anthony Perkins (Norman Bates) returning and trying to keep his sanity as he does well by telling some radio people his life story.
It's very necessary to have an oddbal character actor like Henry Thomas (Young Norman Bates) to play the younger role as he has that expressionless look on his face as he lived to play that role. He was fantastic with his psychological and disturbed behaviour. He was good acting choked up in a scene when his onscreen mother goes in a rage on losing her business and blaming him. He shows nice menacing expressions dressed as Mother while strangling someone.
Olivia Hussey
(Norma Bates) played the perfect character with her wild and abusive behaviour and terrific aggressions too beinging every ounce of energy she had in her role. She is a one mean mother. She looked good by trying to hold back by being emotional at a funeral. A perfect reaction on her after discovering some dirty magazines and going into an outrage. She reacts well when her onscreen son rubs some oil on her while sunbathing during some hot weather.
CCH Pounder
(Fran Ambrose) nicely did her job well by playing a radio DJ showing a terrific attitude to her part in it.
Warren Frost
(Dr. Leo Richmond) came across nicely too with his blunt and serious attitude as a Doctor on the radio show.
Donna Mitchell
Connie Bates) showed some nice emotions to her part as Norman Bates wife and was very touching with her part in it.
Thomas Schuster
(Chet Rudolph) was perfect as the dickhead and sleazy boyfriend to Norma Bates as he came across very well by doing so. He was good with his actions by taunting the teenage Norman along with a good swinging punch. He is great at gagging by bursting out of the bathroom after being poisoned.
Supporting actress Sharon Camille (Holly) does well as a sleazy and flirtatious brat in the film which was a shame she was the first to be killed off.
She does very well by coming on to the younger Norman in his room by taking off her clothes and trying to seduce him.

A breast shot on Bobbi Evers when she takes off her bra in Norman Bates' bedroom.
Another breast shot on Olivia Hussey in her bedroom while young Norman peeks at her through his peephole ready for some lustful action.

Some bloody stabbings

There's the perfect violin playing for the film composed by Graeme Revell as he makes it sound similar to the original movie and some new soundings too as it all worked perfectly.

Fran Ambrose: Well we have to call you something.
Norman Bates: Then call me Ed.

Gloria: You've got a tongue like an elephant's memory.

Norma Bates: Get that whore out of my house!

Ambrose: Are you there?
Norman: I said yes.
Ambrose: We didn't hear you.
Norman: I nodded.
Ambrose: [smiling] We can't hear nods.

Norman: I was practically running the motel single-handedly by the time I was 15. I was the man of the house, she used to call me that. She depended on me, especially when she was scared, she was scared to death of thunder and lightning.

[Norma finds pornography in Norman's bedroom]
Norma Bates: You dirty little bastard! Go out there and throw this in the garbage,
[Norman starts to put his clothes on]
Norma Bates: No! Go as you are! Maybe the rain will wash some of the dirt out of your system! Pig! Dirty little pig! Dirty as your whole whore-mongering sex!

[Norma starts to hit Norman]
Young Norman Bates: What... What did I do?
Norma Bates: Nothing, nothing, nothing!
Young Norman Bates: What's wrong?
Norma Bates: They're closing down the highway and building a new one. They couldn't build it closer to the motel because then the world could still see us! Oh, what am I going to do! How am I going to live! You! Just like my father never a drop of sympathy! It's because of you that I can't hold my water, that's why I'm always running to the toilet did you know that!
Young Norman Bates: Yes I know.
Norma Bates: I regret the day that I ever had you! Not one thing you've ever said or done has been worth all this! Not one blasted thing! I should have killed you in my womb! You sure as hell tried to kill me getting out of it!

[Norman and Norma are on top of each other]
Norma Bates: Get off of me! You are going to learn to forget all about that filthy thing of yours! Here put this on! Girl! Yes girl! Mama's little girl!
[Norma puts a dress and lipstick on Norman]
Young Norman Bates: No, I'm not a girl,
[Norma puts Norman in the closet and hands him a iced tea pitcher]
Norma Bates: Here get in there. You will stay locked in there until you learn not to say "no" to your mother when she tells you you're a girl. And you'll probably have to make wee wee, And you'll squat over this! That's all that thing of yours is for, making wee wee! You clear on that! Answer me! You clear on that Norma!
Young Norman Bates: Mother please! Mother please let me out. Please mother.

Young Norman Bates: All that faith and no potatoes.

Young Norman Bates: You take my father's robe off!
Chet Rudolph: Oh a... no underwear. You see Norman, it's not polite to be naked around a lady unless you're having sex with her. Otherwise, it's just not respectable.

Chet Rudolph: Your not a girl are ya? Your mother swore to me you were a boy and she even said you were well hung. Well that's what she said!
Young Norman Bates: Shut up!

Young Norman Bates: Drive whore!

Norman: I never wanted to kill her.
Dr. Leo Richmond: But you did kill her, and several others, and now you tell us you're going to kill again.

Norman Bates: Just me and my trusty umbrella.

Norman Bates: Connie!

Connie Bates: No Norman! No more blood.