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Birds in Peru (1968)

Les oiseaux vont mourir au Pérou (original title)
X | | Drama | 6 November 1968 (USA)
On a beach, a group of sailors have sex with a depressed young woman. Madam of a nearby brothel takes her in but she leaves with an artist who lives close by. Meanwhile, her old rich husband and his sinister chauffeur are looking for her.


Romain Gary


Romain Gary (screenplay), Romain Gary (story)


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Credited cast:
Jean Seberg ... Adriana
Maurice Ronet ... Rainier
Pierre Brasseur ... Husband
Danielle Darrieux ... Madame Fernande
Jean-Pierre Kalfon ... Chauffeur
Michel Buades Michel Buades ... Alejo
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Henri Czarniak Henri Czarniak ... Truck driver (as Henry Czarniak)
Pierre Koulak Pierre Koulak ... Bouncer
Jackie Lombard Jackie Lombard ... Rita


On a beach, a group of sailors have sex with a depressed young woman. Madam of a nearby brothel takes her in but she leaves with an artist who lives close by. Meanwhile, her old rich husband and his sinister chauffeur are looking for her.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Beneath her icy core lay a desperate desire to love, she would use anyone to find it.




X | See all certifications »






Release Date:

6 November 1968 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Birds in Peru See more »

Filming Locations:

Mauritania See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


The first movie to receive an X rating from the MPAA. See more »


Featured in From the Journals of Jean Seberg (1995) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Arty, Bleak Meditation on Suicidal Nymphomania
6 August 2019 | by jfrentzen-942-204211See all my reviews

Written and directed by novelist Romain Gary, BIRDS IN PERU is a slow-moving French film intended to bolster Seberg's career, which was flagging at the time (1968), and was also intended as Gary's response to the movies previously made from his books - such as ROOTS OF HEAVEN and LADY L - which he disliked. Unfortunately, Gary the filmmaker was a negligible talent compared with Gary the novelist, and BIRDS IN PERU suffers greatly as filmed drama. It tries for a romantic ambience but is more correctly a somewhat clinical meditation on the life of a suicidal nymphomaniac (Seberg) who, after a night-long orgy wakes up to find herself surrounded by bodies, some dead and some alive. She wanders down a Caribbean beach followed by her somewhat maniacal husband and chauffeur. She wants sex at every turn but is actually quite frigid, which sets up the underlying tension in the movie, which is ineptly explored. Seberg does little but stroll aimlessly throughout the film, apparently pursued by the husband who wants her dead.

While Gary attempted to produce a bitter satire on the feminine mystique, the action, dialog and schematic photography are too vague and arty and achieve only boredom. BIRDS IN PERU is not pointed enough for satire and too unrealistic as straight melodrama. The opening beach orgy scene provides the film's most compelling imagery, with its attempts to visually interpret some of the horrors Seberg's character feels towards sex.

BIRDS IN PERU has a place in movie history as one of the first films to receive an "X" rating in the U.S., but the sex and nudity are quite tame by modern standards and Miss Seberg lounges around in skimpy attire for the bulk of the running time, threatening but unwilling to reveal more.

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