The Birds - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Birds Reviews

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½ April 1, 2018
Hitchcock has always been one of my favourite directors, but for whatever reason I never really took to The Birds. Having recently picked up the Hitchcock collection on Blu-ray, I figured this was the perfect opportunity to give the film another shot, as it's been at least fifteen years since I last saw it. Bottom line...I was a friggin' idiot, because The Birds is 100% the masterpiece just about everyone but me has been calling it for decades. On the surface it's a very straightforward movie (birds attack small town), but you peel back the layers and there's so much going on I don't even know where to begin. I love that it starts off as a playful romantic comedy that slowly transforms into a nature gone berserk film. I love the interesting relationships that form between Tippi Hedren's Melanie and everyone else in Bodega Bay, especially as events begin to worsen. And I love the fact just about everything remains a complete mystery. Why are the birds attacking? Why do the attacks seem to centre around Melanie? Is this an isolated incident? We're ultimately left with more questions than answers, and that's part of what makes the film so terrifying. These aren't mutant birds, there's no toxic gas leak causing this, it's simply nature run amok for no other reason than because it can, and our characters are left dazed and confused by it all...just like the audience. Looking back, you can definitely see the influence it had on Spielberg's Jaws. The performances are universally terrific, the dialogue is extremely sharp, and Hitchcock masterfully sets everything up so there's never a dull moment. The Birds is a movie that grabs you, demands multiple viewings, and deserves every bit of praise it's earned since its release.
½ February 24, 2018
It started with an interesting love triangle and then introduced a potential mother twist. The third act didn't deliver anything other than a larger bird attack. After a long-winded second half it abruptly ends with no conclusion..
February 11, 2018
Unlike any other. 1001 movies to see before you die.
½ February 6, 2018
Title: Bird
Story/Writing/Message/Plot: 2
Character/Acting: 2
Music/Sound: 4
Cinematography/Editing: 4
Age/Originality: 4
Total: 16/25
January 12, 2018
A historically important horror film, and ironically directed by Hitchcock who, at the time, was famous for his craft of suspense and fresh to the element of horror, let alone the genre.
½ December 31, 2017
Nope. Watched it out of curiosity and it's not scary or clever - it's just as ridiculous as it sounds. Critics gave it lots of undeserving praise. I would compare it to "The Blob", "Attack of the Killer Tomatoes", or "Sharknado". It starts out as a somewhat interesting love story with a very attractive Tippi Hedren, but all hope for the movie was lost when birds got added to the plot.
½ December 26, 2017
7.3

[Alfred Hitchcock]
December 25, 2017
I love Alfred Hitchcock but this film was soooo slow moving and the Tippi Hedren to me was just a materialistic snobbish stalker. In fact, all the characters were pretty creepy to me, moreso than the birds
½ November 8, 2017
I'd argue that this is the original "zombie film".
½ November 7, 2017
Well, The Birds certainly takes a turn, doesn't it? For what seems like almost an hour this movie barely even hints at what it will become. It feels like a simple relationship drama as we see these two characters meet and grow closer while dealing with all the family and friends that surround them. We wander through a series of scenes that introduce us to all our characters, as they run around from one place to the next. All of this is vital information that makes the rest of the film work. We care about the characters because we got to know them early in the film, and we know where they are headed at any given time because we already are aware of the layout of the town.

When the tone shifts, it turns on a dime and truly becomes a horror film. This is where we totally get to experience the amazing talents of Hitchcock. There are so many scenes where the tension builds brilliantly, and that's what makes for a film that is genuinely scary. We can feel the dread along with the people in the film, and even when they don't see it coming, we do. There were a couple of those classic horror movie moments where you get annoyed with the characters for doing something stupid and risky, but it added to the scares so it's hard to complain. Hitchcock also has a knack for framing shots just right, and he knows how to use sound (or leave it out) to heighten the mood.

I've often heard people say that Hitchcock struggles with ending movies, so it seems his solution with The Birds was simply not to end it at all. This movie stops so abruptly that I thought the blu-ray had somehow skipped a final scene. I don't need to have the reason for the bird attacks explained, it's alright that we're left to guess. I don't even need for the movie to tell me what happens next for our characters. But I need to feel like the movie genuinely concluded. Even if it's just "The End" on the screen or something. This wasn't enough to ruin The Birds for me, but it did leave me on a sour note. Otherwise this was a very well-crafted movie with a great cast and some of Hitchcock's best scares ever.
October 29, 2017
I've lost count how many times I've seen this. The special effects have held up surprisingly well, and the mystery of the situation is a compelling plot device. But beyond that, it's also an interesting story unfolding concerning the characters' history and motivations. Awesome actors with great personal chemistry between them. Many moments of wry humor that eventually begin to twist out of shape as the strangeness of the event takes over. It's also a great look into the time period, while maintaining a timeless quality, showcased by Hitchcock's sense of style and attention to detail.
October 24, 2017
The Birds: Hitchcock expertly builds suspence in this underated masterpeice. While expertly crafting its characters, villans and story.
October 13, 2017
Scariest movie of all time!!! Most modern horror movies require you to believe in something supernatural or are just bloody/shock value. Hitchcock was a master of suspense and horror, mostly because his stories could happen, which makes them even more terrifying! Crazed birds that attack...just saying, where ya gonna go? Hope you have an underground bunker!
½ October 4, 2017
A perfect combination of psychological and actual horrors. Hitchcock brilliantly alternates scenes of tense suspension with an all-out horror unleashed. From the very beginning there is some looming threat in the air, both metaphorically and physically, an inescapable doom. Hitchcock as a great master of suspense the genre he helped to create knows that suggestive horror makes wonders with people's imagination. I'd also like to point out and praise separately the editing of the movie: it's so masterful and careful, you can't help noticing it. There's also a great deal of psychology unfolding in many situations, like mass hysteria, searching for the guilty. Even the small hint at indiscriminate blaming is made when Lydia, the mother, protests against saving little innocent lovebird claiming "They're birds!", meaning they are guilty just being birds also. There were great films thematically similar that preceded this masterpiece, like "Them!" for example and there would follow equally great films like "Night of the Living Dead".
September 29, 2017
the first half was boring, its just about a rich beauty trying to get with this guy. then the birds attack. but the ending was kind of lame, it never explains why the birds attack and they just get away no problem
September 28, 2017
A classic Hitchcock flick that builds up with a long but good story and plenty of thrills. That also shines in its own right even if it is somewhat lower than his other films.
September 21, 2017
Unforgettable, unmatched and unsurpassed.
September 7, 2017
I usually like films from legendary director Alfred Hitchcock.
His brand of suspense thrillers and technical film wizardry for the era are strongpoints. So it is with some degree of trepidation that my review of such a well known Hitchcock film is mediocre. The lowest I have rated one of his films.
I just found the build up starring the two principal actors Tippi Hedren as Socialite Melanie Daniels and Australian Rod Taylor as San Francisco lawyer Mitch Brenner...boring.
It begins with some potential romance scenario where Brenner and Taylor meet each other in a pet store before the film cuts to Daniels driving up the California coast to a resort called Bodega Bay where Taylor spends weekends with his domineering mother Lydia Brenner (Jessica Tandy).
Eventually some bird action occurs as Daniels is attacked by a rogue seagull.
Scenes are shown featuring other bird species in attack mode such as sparrows and crows.
The horror of the bird attacks look tame by modern standards but I imagine back in 1963 they caused a stir.
In one scene a dead body with no eyeballs is shown.
The film was produced way before computer effects so relies on special effects from cameras and film. They do the job adequately.
The film ends quite abruptly without providing adequate resolution in my opinion. Questions are left unanswered. Why do the birds attack the coastal town?
Does outsider to the town Daniels have some link?
½ September 3, 2017
Alfred Hitchcock lets go of all of his symbolism and goes straight for the jugular in this horror-laced suspense thriller that turned out to be one of his most talked about films. Tippi Hedren makes her film debut as a spoiled socialite who pursues a potential suitor (Rod Taylor) after a chance encounter at a pet store. The story unfolds in a quiet beach town in California as residents are being pursued by unusually angry birds at an alarming rate. The reasoning for the attacks are not the point here; but rather the sense of humanity that occurs when danger is imminent. Jessica Tandy plays Taylor's mother and Veronica Cartwright his sister; while Suzanne Pleshette is a school teacher in the town; all part of the mystery surrounding the enraged birds. A great storyline and some shockingly graphic depictions of the attacks make for an unsettling film experience from the master of suspense.
August 22, 2017
I'm really not sure why this movie became such a hit. Were the people in the 1950's that gullible? The movie is well done and I love Tippi Hendron - but the premise is pretty unbelievable. If Hitchcock had at least chosen birds of prey, like hawks and vultures, I would've bought it. But seagulls and sparrows, really?? The part where the seagulls are smashing through the windows and attacking Rod Taylor - without breaking their little necks and pecking through a wooden door - I thought, "This is like a comedy!" lol! Anyway, its a fun watch if nothing else.
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