"I can't seem to face up to the facts, I'm tense and nervous and I can't relax" - Psycho Killer / Talking Heads
American Psycho, based on Bret Easton Ellis' literary gem (strongly recommended by the way), is a menagerie of violence, confusion, and the "it's all about image" mentality of 1980's Metropolis.
Say what you will, Christian Bale is a hell of an actor. He plays the infamous (perhaps in his own mind) Patrick Bateman. Pat is a bit self obsessed to say the least. His morning pre-work ritual taking at least several hours, with a bathroom that looks like the Men's skin care counter at your local Macy's. He brags he's up to 1,000 crunches a day, and makes sure you know his aftershave is alcohol free to avoid pre-aging of his face. His suits are obviously handmade and if given the opportunity has absolutely no problem bragging his alma mater is Harvard where he earned his MBA. And he loves Dorsia, but unfortunately he isn't quite high enough on the food chain to get a reservation. All his friends are carbon clones of this same ideal, shallow with shallow girl-friends, and shallow lives. I cannot see anyone nailing this role like Bale. Check out the scene where he realizes his newly minted business cards pale in comparison to his nemesis Paul Allan played by Jared Leto and his card. His face is classic, and hopelessness sets in, and he may realize his so-called rival is not even really aware of his existence or real name. Oh, and I forgot to mention that Patrick is a serial killer who loves taunting the homeless, and killing prostitutes with chainsaws. Common mistake. But he loves Whitney Houston, Phil Collins, and Huey Lewis and the News. A word of warning to any guests of Patrick, if he starts spewing a 10 minute lecture on any popular musician get the hell out, because like Paul Allan found out, he is about to bury a hatchet in your skull.
The movie in my opinion fails to really explain what the hell his actual motivation was, and even worse, did he really do these things at all? He IS on meds, so perhaps he imagines these scenes as his lawyer laughs away his confessions. Kudos to the Ed Gein reference though I don't think Gein was quoted correctly. The movie nails the era right on the head, but without Bale, and a Private investigator played by Willem Defoe, the attempt of copying the book is frankly a cluster fuck. But a fun one just the same, in listening to his conversations with the escorts he likes to hire. Let's talk Blu Ray.
Video: 4 out of 5
Nothing to complain about here at all. Bright whites, dark blacks, and red blood come through clear. However what keeps it from a higher score is that the Blu Ray is not much better than the DVD edition. So that being said if you have the DVD, keep it. But if you don't, this is a tight looking film on Blu Ray, and you can find most retailers have it for 7.50 and up.
Audio: 5 out of 5
Wow. The audio on the high def disk is awesome. During the various nightclub and restaurant scenes, you would swear you are there basking in the debauchery. The scenes like Patrick's "Hip to be square" segment is crazy, it sounds like you are listening to a high end stereo, while the sound mode changes perfectly to imitate a club spewing out mindless beats to drink and hunt the opposite sex to. Outstanding audio work here, and it saves the overall film with a soundtrack fit for the insane decade of indulgence.
This film is a must for any fan of the 80's, and of course Christian Bale. If not meh...