Friday, September 25, 2009

September 22, 2009

The Birds (1963)
#16 on my Top 100 List
Out of all of Alfred Hitchcock's films, there are really only two that can be categorized as horror, contrary to some popular opinion - this and Psycho. What makes this movie so scary is that the bad guys are birds. Sea gulls, swifts, crows, you name it - they're after you. They mass in swarms in the skies, glare from power lines, swarm down chimneys and peck their way through ceilings, with not a single hint of an explanation why. The scene where Melanie (Tippi Hedren) turns around to see hundreds of crows silently watching her from the playground and the ensuing chase down the street from the schoolhouse is scary and memorable, but nothing can compare to the discovery of the neighbor's eye-less body propped up against his bedroom wall. Hitchcock chose to have no music at all in the film, which in turns makes the sound of a bird's call or flapping wings a terrifying herald of things to come. The end of the film offers no resolution, which leaves the viewer unsettled, slighty unsatisfied, and in real life, warily eyeing any semblance of more than five birds on a power line at a time. I'm pretty sure that that's exactly what Hitch wanted.
My Netflix rating: 5 stars

No comments:

Post a Comment