Melanie Daniels is the modern rich socialite, part of the jet-set who always gets what she wants. When lawyer Mitch Brenner sees her in a pet shop, he plays something of a practical joke on her, and she decides to return the favor. She drives about an hour north of San Francisco to Bodega Bay, where Mitch spends the weekends with his mother Lydia and younger sister Cathy. Soon after her arrival, however, the birds in the area begin to act strangely. A seagull attacks Melanie as she is crossing the bay in a small boat, and then, Lydia finds her neighbor dead, obviously the victim of a bird attack. Soon, birds in the hundreds and thousands are attacking anyone they find out of doors. There is no explanation as to why this might be happening, and as the birds continue their vicious attacks, survival becomes the priority. Written by
Shortly before he died, the Japanese director Akira Kurosawa created an unranked, chronological list of the films he considered the 100 greatest of all time. (However, because he deliberately limited himself to only one film per director, it is actually more of a "greatest directors" than a "best films" list.) The single Hitchcock film that he chose to include was _The Birds (1963)_. In his accompanying commentary, he noted that the sight of so many birds massed together caused him to feel "dread" and wondered how Hitchcock had managed to shoot those scenes. See more »
While in the car when the crows attack the school, Melanie's left hand is by her head when she beeps the horn. In the next shot, her hand is on the steering wheel while beeping the horn, the next shot her hand is by her head again. See more »
Unfortunately, the self-styled Master of Suspense is the Master of Pretentiousness in this one. The "I'm an auteur now, as you can see by slooow pacing, the waxy, masklike stares of my blonde, and my deliberately withholding from any character the faculty of reason."
Main-character Melanie, the Paris Hilton of her day (did she or didn't she skinny dip in a Roman fountain? Oooh, titillating!) has absolutely no affect to her voice--in every line, she channels Lauren Bacall on barbituates. The women all hate each other instantly and are each fixated on "Mitch," a hubba-hubba guy with no chemistry. The cute meet is stupid; the melodrama is boring; there is no suspense because, between deadly attacks, people seem to forget the trauma of the birds--after a harrowing encounter, the mother rambles on about missing her husband and not knowing whether she likes Hubba's new relationship, for example.
In short, this would be excellent, excellent fodder for Mystery Science Theater--just the right level of movie-making competency and retardness to make for gleeful ridicule.
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