DIRECTOR: Alfred Hitchcock
1960 saw the release of Psycho, Hitchcock’s signature work, but Psycho is not the only film that people think of when talking about his work. The Birds, made three years later, has a warm place in film fans hearts and a much larger fan base than people seem to think.
I know more people who dislike Psycho compared to those who like The Birds and I feel that this is most defiantly Alfred Hitchcock at his best. Rear Window and Vertigo are also up there but this film offers the right blend of shocks and a disturbing sense of dread, that makes it accessible by many, whilst still being fun to watch.
The birds have turned. Nature is taking her wrath upon man for a brief moment, but the sheer scale of the idea that nature could turn on us is a primally frightening concept. I do feel that this was the vain in which M. Night Shyamalan’s dismal The Happening was attempting to tap into decades later, but Hitchcock got this right first time, for all time.
The effects are dated but their impact is still strong, as the ideas are so pronounced that there’s little need to show anything. The acting is decent and the direction, though not as perfect as many would argue for Hitch, still doing the job well. This is a timeless and more accessible Hitchcock classic than Psycho, yet often dismissed and I wonder why?
Both films are clear genre pieces and are still being drawn from today. This is a textbook thriller with a natural twist and a dire tone. But the image of the crow massing on telegraph poles is a simple as it it frighting, just because it happens every day…