Considering how great the original "Psycho" is, Franklin and screenwriter Tom Holland were brave to attempt a sequel. This film is a decent follow-up, genuinely suspenseful and scary. It's actually much better than the 1998 remake of "Psycho" produced after Perkins' death from AIDS in 1992. The year before it was released, Robert Bloch wrote his novel "Psycho II," which doesn't share the same story.
Twenty-two years after the events of the original "Psycho," Bates is finally released from an insane asylum. Vera Miles returns as Lila Loomis, the sister of Janet Leigh's character in the original, who wants to see Bates back behind bars. Tilly is a mysterious character who moves in with Perkins.
Soon, murders start happening again in and around the Bates Motel, but it isn't clear if Bates is the one who's responsible. Holland's screenplay actually does a great job of crafting a real mystery and building on the story of the first film although some of the "revelations" at the end of Part 2 are a bit far-fetched.
But, given the awesome challenge, Holland did great. Holland, it should be noted, was a great horror movie screenwriter, with "The Beast Within" among his credits before he penned this. He went on to direct the excellent "Fright Night" and "Child's Play."
"Psycho II" was a huge hit, the second biggest film of the summer of 1983 (number one was "Return of the Jedi").
"Psycho II" is a must see, near masterpiece. It was followed by the inferior, but still worthwhile, "Psycho III."