Wednesday, April 1, 2009

The Birds(1963)

This is a horror classic. It is directed by Alfred Hitchcock and it stars Tippi Hedren and Rod Taylor.It is based on a short story by Daphne Du Maurier. There isn't anyone who doesn't know this movie, I would say. Along with Psycho(1960), this has to be Hitchcocks most famous horror movie. The story begins with a young woman called Melanie Daniels(Hedren) who goes into a pet shop to pick up a bird for her aunt. She is a rich socialite whose father owns a newspaper. She bumps into a guy called Mitch(Taylor) and he is looking for a pair of lovebirds for his sister. It turns out that he knows her from before and she is not impressed with his behaviour as he jokes with her. She is curious about him and she decides to deliver his lovebirds to his house in Bodega Bay. She procures a boat and she sails over to his house. She leaves the birds on his doorstep with a note. As she is heading back, a bird swoops down and hurts her head. She is seen by Mitch and he helps her from her boat and he takes her back to his house. Melanie meets his mother,Lydia(Jessica Tandy) and his sister, Cathy(Veronica Cartwright). She also meets Mitch's ex-lover, Annie(Suzanne Pleshette). Melanie stays over at Mitch's house for the night and a bird flies into his front door, killing itself. More birds attack the kids at Cathy's birthday party and later at school. Melanie makes a phone call from the local diner to her dad telling him what is going on. The locals tell her about the attacks from birds which have been occurring lately. The birds begin to attack people and there is no doubt that they mean business. Everyone has to run for it as the birds start to become very aggressive.Melanie takes refuge in a phone box and she is rescued by Mitch as the birds try to get at her. The attack abates for a few minutes and Mitch and Melanie go to Annie's house to collect Cathy. They find Annie dead on the doorstep and Cathy is in tears at the window. The birds have killed Annie. The others run to Mitch's house where they take refuge from the birds. They try and board up the windows and doors. They hear something upstairs and Melanie goes to investigate. The birds have broken in through a window and they attack her until Mitch rescues her. She is patched up by Lydia and Cathy and they decide to get her to a hospital. They make it to the car and as they drive off, the news on the car radio tells of similar bird attacks in California. The movie ends with them driving away as the birds watch them go....

A real classic movie with some brilliant scenes of the birds attacking. It might be an old movie, but it is a real delight for any horror fan. I am giving this a 10/10.


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