Bird - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Bird Reviews

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September 14, 2016
A clear passion project for director Clint Eastwood on his jazz hero Charlie 'Bird' Parker focusing on his phenomenal talent but self destructing addictive nature.

Forest Whitaker was stellar cast as Bird & brought much life to the character. The jazz scene back then was a passion filled environment but rather dingy & disconnected to popular music circles.

Although not a wildly entertaining & fast moving film it was interesting & engaging piece of cinema. Well worth a watch if your Eastwood Enthusiast.
June 2, 2016
A somewhat hard to understand depiction of the life of Charlie Parker, but everything else is outstanding: the acting, cinematography, the dark settings of New York, the jazz music etc.
April 28, 2016
A rather lame attempt to capture the life and times of one of the greatest jazz musicians of all times. The film is boring, disjointed and confusing, to say nothing of needing a good deal of editing. The acting is pretty good, though, but nobody could carry this script that distance.
February 20, 2016
So few movies about Jazz so automatic five stars. It is a excellent movie great acting. The script jumping around in time didn't always work for me. Also you make a movie about a musician that musicians are going to be the main audience take the time to buy or rent period correct instruments it is really distracting seeing gear that wasn't invented till decades later in scene.
½ December 26, 2015
Though quite a soulful performance by Forest Whitaker, and Diane Venora's best performance, it doesn't give a complete narration or look into Bird's life, which does not warrant its feature length time.
½ October 5, 2015
Clint Eastwood's love letter Charlie Parker shouldn't have been written. Disjointed, overly melodramatic, with too many shifting time periods that made it confusing.
July 19, 2015
A fabulous performance from Forest Whitaker with a great soundtrack and sound design. Diana Verona is also great in this and Clint Eastwood does a great job as director. It does ramble on for far too long but the performances are too good to turn away from
½ June 3, 2015
Clint Eastwood's biopic of bebop legend Charlie Parker seems somewhat aimless - and perhaps that is how Eastwood construed Parker's life. Sure, the music is omnipresent and exciting but Parker seems more fixated on heroin than on jazz. It can't really have been the case (one hopes). Forest Whitaker is superb, underplaying as usual, as Parker and he intimates the pain underlying the jazz life and driving some of the poor behavioural choices. I still don't see Clint Eastwood as anything other than a plain director who efficiently tells stories - but that is often enough to create a commercial (and award-winning) success. Here, he throws in some extra expressionistic flourishes (that cymbal crashing) and loses a bit of control when the script jumps backwards and forwards in time. However, the music (including Parker's own playing) is often transcendent and carries the film over its over-long running time. Now if we could see some free-jazz legends on film, all would be right with the world (for truly that film would be more ecstatic than this one).
April 15, 2015
Eastwood's love of Jazz flows out here and Whitaker proves a wonderful muse.
½ January 24, 2015
If i realy was interested in Charlie Parker this movie would get an extra star ....But great performance by Forest W. Good job Clint !!!
½ September 13, 2014
After almost 3.5 hours of watching this 2.5 hours movie (?1?) I have no idea what I saw, when was the past and present, when did Parker started to use heroin? You know what, you can skip this one.
September 8, 2014
tbord keen intrepetation Of forest witeker un thà (C) rôle Of Charlie Parker
thà (C) creator Of be bop
½ April 18, 2014
I found it repetitive and boring. Maybe it was because I'm not a huge jazz fan.
½ January 17, 2014
This was surprisingly long and boring.
½ November 21, 2013
Un très bon Eastwood, Forest Whitaker est exceptionnel.
October 30, 2013
Like Eastwood himself you need to be a Jazz fan. Its a slow start and a sad tale my friends buts its a great Jazz biopic. If you've heard any Charlie Parker recorded interviews you'll know that Forest Whitakers interpretaion of Bird is sublime. I would have liked a bit more focus on the music and a little less on his sad personal life but then again we've got the albums for that. Eastwood acquired rare early recordings from Birds wife Chan and you can hear them in the movie. Coltrane and Sonny Rollins are my favourite sax players but there's no doubt that Charlie Parker was the Greatest. Parker did for bebop what Coltrane did for modal/modern Jazz. This movie is a great tribute directed with love by a real Jazz fan.
½ August 22, 2013
Bird overwhelms itself with its complicated structure and so it's story about famous musical legend Charlie "The Bird" Parker is clustered and somewhat excessive in its dynamics jumping out of random places, even though it has a consistently slow pace. The general focus seems to lack consistency in it an frankly Clint Eastwood focuses on emphasising moments of Charlie Parker's life and then jumping to the next point without really allowing the actors to make the transition. Basically, like many biopics, Bird is clunky and the main benefit to understand Charlie Parker is through the depth given by its lead actor's performance.

But truly with all that it relies on Forest Whitaker to hold Bird aloft. Alas, Bird in fact had the living embodiment of Charlie "The Bird" Parker to play the titular role. Forest Whitaker, who put intense study into understanding the mind of Charlie Parker teaches us about him through his ability to capture emotional intensity and manipulate his emotions as seen fit, and the product turns him into an impeccably strong and dedicated character actor overnight due to a performance worthy of an Academy Award nomination. It's Forest Whitaker who works to breath life into this biopic about a legendary musician, and he does so by becoming one himself, at the same time as becoming The Bird.
Diane Venora and Michael Zelniker also worked hard to their roles and have strong performances to bold to their names.
And frankly Clint Eastwood does do a good job as a director overall because of the strong dramatisation he does through application of the atmosphere.
The atmosphere in Bird is immaculate. It captures the atmosphere of Blues music through its groovy music but dark visuals, made available through atmospheric lighting. Along with that is great costuming and a perfect timing look which gives Bird an excellent production design befitting to the iconic musician it covers. The music is also excellent.

So Bird has flaws, but it has an impeccable atmosphere and a great lead performance from Forest Whitaker in one of his finest, so it's a mostly successful biopic.
½ July 27, 2013
90% de la película se repite el mismo sonido, interminable, sabia que no debía mirarla.
June 17, 2013
You would think Forest Whitaker playing Charlie Parker and being directed by Clint Eastwood would make for great cinema, but it ultimately played out like your standard biopic.
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