Study Guide

Psycho Scene 4

Scene 4

Scene 4

  • Dissolve again to Marion's car parked on the side of the road. A police car pulls up beside her.
  • A highway patrol dude gets out and sees her sleeping. Yet another Peeping Tom moment (you're not done with those yet).
  • Marion wakes up and looks really startled. She turns on the ignition. She looks awfully guilty.
  • The trooper insists on talking to her. She says she got tired and pulled over to close her eyes.
  • The trooper thinks she is guilty guilty guilty, but he doesn't know of what. He asks to see her license, which makes her even more nervous, because the envelope is in her purse.
  • But the trooper doesn't find anything wrong and lets her go.
  • But the sawing strings start up again, meaning she's not out of trouble yet.
  • The police car follows her, making her very, very nervous.
  • Now follows the world's slowest on screen car chase. Hitchcock never would have made it as a James Bond director.
  • Finally the police car pulls onto a side road, much to Marion's relief.
  • She drives into a town where there's a used car lot.
  • She buys a paper to see if the theft has been mentioned yet, but it hasn't.
  • While she's looking at the paper, the trooper pulls up nearby and sees her. He parks across the street to watch.
  • She's really bad at this life-of-crime thing.
  • And the dealer, California Charlie, comes out. Marion asks to buy a used car.
  • She's in a big hurry. She sees the policeman across the street, which makes her even more worried.
  • She wants a car instantly, without a test drive or a day and a half to think it over.
  • "First time the customer ever high-pressured the salesman," California Charlie says. He's got good patter.
  • Despite his suspicions, he agrees to sell her a car right away for $700 (which would be about $5,600 in 2015 dollars).
  • Marion goes to the bathroom, counts out the money from the envelope, then sticks it back in her purse.
  • She and California Charlie go in to make the deal, and the police officer drives into the lot.
  • She sees him and gets in the new car. She almost forgets her suitcase. The police dude and California Charlie stare after her.
  • As she's driving away you hear more voices in her head.
  • She's thinking about Charlie and the officer behind her, and imagining them talking about her. She thinks they think she's guilty of something. She's probably right.
  • More driving, driving, driving.
  • Now Marion imagines Caroline and Mr. Lowery talking about her.
  • She imagines that they're worried, and that they get in touch with her sister (also worried).
  • Then she imagines that Lowery figures out she stole the money and that he tells Cassidy.
  • It's quite late at night at this point; Marion's still driving.
  • She imagines Cassidy planning to track her down and take any lost money out of her "fine soft flesh."
  • At this point, Marion starts to smile, as if she enjoys the thought of putting one over on Cassidy.
  • You can see why she might like the idea of fooling him He was unpleasant, and flirting with her, so she's sort of getting her own back on him.
  • Still, Marion's smile is a little creepy (and not the last creepy smile in the film).

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