MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 1,320 this week

Birdman of Alcatraz (1962)

 -  Biography | Drama  -  3 July 1962 (USA)
7.8
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.8/10 from 9,925 users  
Reviews: 68 user | 23 critic

A surly convicted murderer held in permanent isolation redeems himself when he becomes a renowned bird expert.

Directors:

, (uncredited)

Writers:

(screenplay), (book)
Watch Trailer
0Check in
0Share...

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 34 titles
created 12 Oct 2010
 
a list of 28 titles
created 22 Oct 2011
 
a list of 45 titles
created 11 months ago
 
a list of 36 titles
created 8 months ago
 
a list of 45 titles
created 7 months ago
 

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Birdman of Alcatraz (1962)

Birdman of Alcatraz (1962) on IMDb 7.8/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Birdman of Alcatraz.

User Polls

Nominated for 4 Oscars. Another 7 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

The story of Thomas More, who stood up to King Henry VIII when the King rejected the Roman Catholic Church to obtain a divorce and remarriage.

Director: Fred Zinnemann
Stars: Paul Scofield, Wendy Hiller, Robert Shaw
Lenny (1974)
Biography | Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

The story of acerbic 1960s comic Lenny Bruce, whose groundbreaking, no-holds-barred style and social commentary was often deemed by the Establishment as too obscene for the public.

Director: Bob Fosse
Stars: Dustin Hoffman, Valerie Perrine, Jan Miner
Lust for Life (1956)
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

The life of brilliant but tortured artist Vincent van Gogh.

Directors: Vincente Minnelli, George Cukor
Stars: Kirk Douglas, Anthony Quinn, James Donald
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

The story of Anne Sullivan's struggle to teach the blind and deaf Helen Keller how to communicate.

Director: Arthur Penn
Stars: Anne Bancroft, Patty Duke, Victor Jory
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

A man's coerced confession to an IRA bombing he did not commit results in the imprisonment of his father as well. An English lawyer fights to free them.

Director: Jim Sheridan
Stars: Daniel Day-Lewis, Pete Postlethwaite, Alison Crosbie
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

The last days of Frankenstein director James Whale are explored.

Director: Bill Condon
Stars: Ian McKellen, Brendan Fraser, Lynn Redgrave
My Left Foot (1989)
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

The story of Christy Brown, who was born with cerebral palsy. He learned to paint and write with his only controllable limb - his left foot.

Director: Jim Sheridan
Stars: Daniel Day-Lewis, Brenda Fricker, Alison Whelan
The Sea Inside I (2004)
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

The real-life story of Spaniard Ramon Sampedro, who fought a 30 year campaign in favor of euthanasia and his own right to die.

Director: Alejandro Amenábar
Stars: Javier Bardem, Belén Rueda, Lola Dueñas
Chaplin (1992)
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A film about the troubled and controversial life of the master comedy filmmaker.

Director: Richard Attenborough
Stars: Robert Downey Jr., Geraldine Chaplin, Paul Rhys
Nixon (1995)
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A biographical story of former U.S. president Richard Milhous Nixon, from his days as a young boy to his eventual presidency which ended in shame.

Director: Oliver Stone
Stars: Anthony Hopkins, Joan Allen, Powers Boothe
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

After a brilliant but asocial mathematician accepts secret work in cryptography, his life takes a turn for the nightmarish.

Director: Ron Howard
Stars: Russell Crowe, Ed Harris, Jennifer Connelly
Houdini (1953)
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

The spectacular but tragically short career of magician and illusionist Harry Houdini whose tricks defied explanation and safety.

Director: George Marshall
Stars: Tony Curtis, Janet Leigh, Torin Thatcher
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
Bull Ransom
Betty Field ...
Stella Johnson
...
...
Tom Gaddis
...
Albert Comstock
...
Dr. Ellis
Crahan Denton ...
Kramer
James Westerfield ...
Jess Younger
Edit

Storyline

In 1912, the notorious and violent prisoner Robert Franklin Stroud is transferred to the Leavenworth Prison convicted for murdering a man. When a guard cancels the visit of his mother Elizabeth Stroud due to a violation of the internal rules, he stabs and kills the guard and goes to trial three times. He is sentenced to be executed by the gallows, but his mother appeals to President Woodrow Wilson that commutes his sentence to life imprisonment. However, the warden Harvey Shoemaker decides to keep Stroud in the solitary for the rest of his life. One day, Stroud finds a sparrow that has fallen from the nest on the yard and he raises the bird until it is strong enough to fly. Stroud finds a motivation for his life raising and caring birds and becomes an expert in birds. He marries Stella Johnson and together they run a business, providing medicine developed by Stroud. But a few years after, Stroud is transferred to Alcatraz and has to leave his birds behind. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Inside the rock called Alcatraz they tried to chain a volcano they called "The Bird Man"! See more »

Genres:

Biography | Drama

Certificate:

See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

3 July 1962 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Birdman of Alcatraz  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Karl Malden (Leavenworth warden Harvey Shoemaker) introduces a new warden to the institution. He identifies one of the prisoners as "Sekulovich", Malden's own real name. See more »

Goofs

In the last scene at the dock, while Stroud is talking to the reporters, the Alcatraz launch is seen leaving the dock and heading back toward the island. When Stroud then talks with Tom Gaddis, the launch can be seen over Stroud's shoulder, back at the dock again, and is again in the process of casting off. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Tour guide: ...during which you will see all of the man-made and natural beauties, the most spectacular bay in the world. You'll pass beneath the famous Golden Gate Bridge, considered by most authorities to be one of the most striking structures ever erected by man. From the bay, you will thrill to the magnificent San Francisco skyline. Your cruise ship, the Harbor King, will circle Alcatraz, a maximum security prison containing the most dangerous criminals in America. It has been the home of ...
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Mystery Science Theater 3000: Laserblast (1996) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Brilliant film...Lancaster's finest performance...
13 July 2002 | by (U.S.A.) – See all my reviews

BURT LANCASTER seldom had a role that he connected with more than his portrait of an embittered man who must spend his life in prison after murdering a prison guard. His muted performance of this stoic man is under close scrutiny by the camera as he gradually redeems himself through a chance encounter with a fallen sparrow.

Everyone in the cast is superb--Karl Malden as a hard-nosed warden, Telly Savalas as a fellow prisoner, Betty Field as the widow who becomes close to Stroud through a mutual interest, and particularly Thelma Ritter as an over possessive mother. The refusal of a prison guard to permit Lancaster to see his mother is the catalyst that sends Stroud into solitary when the guard is fatally stabbed.

The scene where Stroud breaks down and actually apologizes to a prison guard (Neville Brand) is one of the most powerful moments in the film with Brand speaking up to the defiant prisoner who treats the guards with contempt.

All of the scenes showing Stroud taking care of his birds are startlingly realistic. Through brilliant black and white photography and a compelling script--and under the superior direction of John Frankenheimer--the film will move you to tears on more than one occasion and provides a vast range of emotions for the viewer. Burt Lancaster's finest achievement as an actor.

Interesting to note that only Burt Lancaster and Thelma Ritter were nominated for Oscars. Karl Malden and Neville Brand also deserved Oscar nominations--as did the film.


41 of 46 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Remake 'The Birdman' urbisoler-1
the ending -- help! biskinikill
"Murderous homosexual"? Lupercali
great film carlin4737
Bernstein score flix4me
His Other Book instantvintage-1
Discuss Birdman of Alcatraz (1962) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?