Starring Christian Bale, Jared Leto, Willem Defoe, Samantha Mathis, Reese Witherspoon. Written and Directed by Mary Harron.
Running time: Too long.
American Psycho is based on the novel by Brett Easton Ellis. It illustrates the story of Patrick Bateman (Bale) a Wall Street yuppie who snowballs into a sociopath after a turn of events at work. He claims to have no conscience or emotion (after reading the script, I’m not surprised) and if anybody crosses him there will be hell to pay. The contradiction is that he feels no emotion towards his murder spree, but in a voice over (which pisses me off when they describe things on the screen- its in front of my eyes ! I can see it) he claims he enjoys it. Anyhoo, he is a VP of a stocks company who flirts with his secretary and watches MTV by day and fucks prostitutes and kills people by night. A colleague Paul Allen (Jared Leto) goes out and buys a flashier business card than his, so Bateman hacks him to death with an axe. He then batters a prostitute and as the film progresses he stabs a homeless man and his dog, shoots an OAP in the face and blows up a police car (with the police in it).
The majority of the film then centers around the search for Paul Allen’s body. Enter a deceptively perceptive Willem defoe who is out to solve the crime. Add a soundtrack by Hewey Lewis and the News and Phil Collins and the movie is on 2 hours too long. The Direction and storyboard could have been a lot better. They never show you extreme scenes of gore, but take the camera work too far to leave anything to the imagination, leaving the viewer sitting on a barbed wire fence which you want to get off throughout the film.
The end is largely down to the fact that in the 80’s every wanted to be Gordon Gecco, but this film doesn’t have the panache of “Wall Street.” Bale was too English, Leto too shit, Defoe too cameo’d, Mathis too slutty, Witherspoon too young for the role. The much publiscised 3 way sex scene was poor, too much was left to the imagination as all you could see was Bateman flexing his muscles in a mirror, not even a decent muff shot!
I blame Jared Leto for the ending. It must be him. Urban Legend – a semi decent film with a shit ending, American Psycho, oh sorry, there’s no running trend, this was shit all the way through. Here are 5 steps to save money and not to endure this film but still get a feel of the eighties.
Step 1. Compile an album from the songs you never listened to in the eighties and play it over and over with your eyes shut until it upsets you, psychologically.
Step 2. Watch “Wall Street” and imagine Daryl Hannah shagging another woman while Charlie Sheen chops people up.
Step 3. Talk inherently about the possibility of catching AIDS by shagging a dirty toothbrush.
Step 4. Buy the book!
Step 5. Do what every self respecting man did in the eighties…masturbate over Kelly Le Brock in Weird Science.