Tippi Hedren is great as Melanie Daniels who gets a little down in the mouth when Rod Taylor's Mitch Brenner dissed her and dismissed her in San Francisco! So like any sensible and reasonable... stalker... she tracks him down to his Beach Front home in the small hamlet of Bodega Bay, California. After insinuating her way into Mitch's life, along with that of his Mommy Jessica Tandy and little sister Veronica Cartwright, Melanie's life takes a bizarre turn as first she, and then every other citizen of the old berg start getting beaked to death by every angry feathered one from the Pigeon to the yard bird to the Crow to Larry Bird! It's a twist worthy of a Hitchcock movie on a subject worthy of an Alan Smithee movie!
And somehow it works. Hitchcock's camera work and eye for detail is as good here as it ever is, and his spin on the under-siege household is the best in any movie. Amazingly many of the conceits used in this movie are re-used in many a zombie movie, replacing the old aepyornis genus with the walking dead.
From Daphne Du Maurier's story to Evan Hunter's screenplay to Hitch's translation the suspense is tighter than Anna Nicole Smith's Bra, but the spelled-out explanation of the chaos is as elusive here as... as Anna Nicole Smith's bra. The idea of unending terror without a given reasoning behind how these birdies got this way tends to make the understanding of this movie wholly encapsulated in the eye of the viewer. However with such skill in front of and behind the camera, there's little to complain about or to find lacking. It's a hell of a movie from a hell of a director, who had wings himself.
And you thought that domestic policy, international affairs and the Patriot Act were enough to keep you frightened! Next time you sit down to that fresh and sweet bucket of KFC's Popcorn Chicken, just remember when it's time to cash in your chips, there might be a sky filled with diseased winged rats just waiting to be your banker (over the top superlative corniness, mine!). Four Stars out of Five for Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds, a truly creepy and scary thriller with the proficiency to help you fill in the blanks for yourself! Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to put on my PETA T-Shirt, grab some bird seed, renew my vow of vegetarianism, and go sit in the park feeding black birds and blue jays! Hey, you may say that feeding birds gives you one thing: Fat Birds, but when that mini-Roc is swooping down toward your head while you're holding your Turkey Sandwich, don't come crying to this man! I'll be seeing you in the next reel, thank you Very much!
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