A wealthy San Francisco socialite pursues a potential boyfriend to a small Northern California town that slowly takes a turn for the bizarre when birds of all kinds suddenly begin to attack people there in increasing numbers and with increasing viciousness.
The trickster Madam Blanche Tyler lures the elder millionaire Julia Rainbird that believes she is a spiritualist. After a séance, she discovers that Julia is tormented by her past, when she forced her sister and single mother Harriet to deliver her baby for adoption to avoid a family scandal. Julia promises the small fortune of ten thousand-dollar to Blanche if she finds her nephew and heir of her fortune using her phony powers. Blanche asks her boyfriend George Lumley, who is an unemployed actor working as cab driver, to investigate the whereabouts of Julia's nephew. Meanwhile, the greedy jeweler and collector Arthur Adamson kidnaps wealthy people with his girlfriend Fran to increase his collection of diamonds with the ransom. When George concludes that Arthur Adamson might be the heir of Julia Rainbird, the reckless Blanche gets in trouble with the kidnappers. Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
The restaurant seen in the film was built on the Universal Studios back-lot and could be seen on studio tours in 1975. See more »
The first time we see Blanche riding in the back of George's taxi it's rather obvious the background is on a "green screen". Because of this, the street lights ahead of the taxi can be seen moving back and forth right through George's hat and head. See more »
Isn't it touching how a perfect murder has kept our friendship alive all these years.
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The Universal logo does not appear anywhere on this film. See more »
Having seen "Torn Curtain" about a year ago, I wasn't all that enthusiastic about seeing another of Hitchcock's "late" works (indeed, his final film). "TC" was absolutely abysmal, as reflected in my comments there, so I had no great expectations for "Family Plot." I was pleasantly surprised, however. Although true Hitchcock buffs may not rank "FP" alongside the "classics" like "Psycho" and "NxNW," "FP" is an evenly-paced film with strong central characters, an interesting supporting cast, good acting, humor, innuendo, mystery and, of course, suspense. A good all-around film by the master in his final effort. It won't leave your palms sweating and your blood running cold, and there are a couple of flaws that a younger Hitch might have caught (I, for one, wonder how Blanche's car got fixed so quickly -- hard to believe it wasn't totaled in the first place).
Nonetheless, Family Plot will hold your attention and keep you guessing until the very end. I'm glad I took the time to seek it out and watch it.
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