Retro Reviews: The Birds (1963)

Retro Reviews: The Birds (1963)

The Birds (1963) Hitchcock

Only Alfred Hitchcock could pull off an ‘animal invasion’ movie that was not only wildly popular back then but is an icon of today. In the Birds (1963) the famous directing, that has made him a household name plus fabulous acting put this horror/thriller right up there with serious contenders.

Most animal invasion movies end up on the B-List but not anything to do with Hitchcock. The Birds has an excellent story line, mounting horror and suspense and is as much a classic today as it ever was. Special effects for those times are still not lost as this apocalyptic-style movie continues to echoe a long-winded “why?” throughout decades of popularity.Retro Reviews: The Birds (1963)

Things start to go a little crazy in Bodego Bay, California, after a socialite arrives with two love birds as a gift for a lawyer she met in a San Francisco pet shop. She decides to play a little practical joke on him and drives up the coast to meet him, carrying two love birds with her. But things start to go very awry for Bodego Bay and many of the people that live there. Flocks of birds are attacking and no one seems to know how to stop it or why it is happening. The Birds story was loosely based on a short story by Daphne du Maurier and the fabulous screenplay is by Evan Hunter.

The cast of The Birds can never be replaced in the minds of those who have seen it. They have come to more than represent the iconic characters in the movie: Tippie Hendren as Melanie Daniels, Rod Taylor as Mitch Brenner, Suzanne Pleshette as Annie Hayworth, Veronica Cartwright as Cathy Brenner and Jessica Tandy as Lydia Brenner.

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Attack at the School

Like Psycho and many classics from Mr. Hitchcock this is a brilliant and fun movie but still scary enough for a horror-filled movie night. It’s the must-see of the must-sees. And as you’re caught up in the events of Bodego Bay, ask yourself this question: Why did this happen out of nowhere to these unsuspecting town folk. Perhaps you have the answer. I give the movie a 9/10 for Hitchcock’s sheer ‘unflappable’ genius.

*Interesting fact- Hitchcock came to a decision not to use a conventional sound track throughout the film. He made use rather of certain sound effects and well placed silences. Hitchcock used the electro-acoustic Mixtur-Trautonium to create some of the bird sounds on the film.

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    • Lin Jenkinson

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