Is "The Birds" Hitchcock's best film?

..and why not?
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GoogaMooga
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Is "The Birds" Hitchcock's best film?

Postby GoogaMooga » 01 Nov 2019, 16:49

Coming off the phenomenal success of "Psycho", the legendary British filmmaker Alfred Hitchcock was asked what he would do for an encore. To answer that question, Hitchcock moved away from the low-key, low budget, bw intensity of his 1960 horror shocker, and opted instead for a no-expenses-spared, vibrant Technicolor presentation, a master class in effects-driven fright. "The Birds", his 1963 adaptation of a Daphne Du Maurier novel, is a cautionary tale of environmental chaos, perhaps the finest man vs. nature film ever made. It is the summation of his work, the apex of more than four decades of film-making, with its bold colors, meticulous production design, seamless editing by George Tomasini, and compositional perfection by ace cinematographer Robert Burks. Film composer Bernard Herrmann was once again called upon, this time not to provide a score, but to supervise the sound effects, an unnerving cacophany of birds squawking, flapping and fluttering. "The Birds" is at times my favorite Hitchcock film, growing in stature with each passing year.

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Last edited by GoogaMooga on 03 Nov 2019, 17:16, edited 1 time in total.
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Flower
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Re: Is "The Birds" Hitchcock's best film?

Postby Flower » 01 Nov 2019, 18:24

I like "The Birds" and recall seeing it for the first time. It was on television and I was at my best friend's house. It's a good flick but isn't one of my top ten Hitchcock movies.
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Re: Is "The Birds" Hitchcock's best film?

Postby St Jeemo the Humourless » 02 Nov 2019, 00:06

It's great but Hitchcock did much much better than The Birds.

Rear Window, Vertigo, Pyscho, Strangers On A Train, Suspicion, North by Northwest,Shadow of A Doubt, The 39 Steps, Notorious,The Wrong Man. All better than The Birds
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Re: Is "The Birds" Hitchcock's best film?

Postby Flower » 02 Nov 2019, 13:19

St Jeemo the Humourless wrote:It's great but Hitchcock did much much better than The Birds.

Rear Window, Vertigo, Pyscho, Strangers On A Train, Suspicion, North by Northwest,Shadow of A Doubt, The 39 Steps, Notorious,The Wrong Man. All better than The Birds


I agree and would add ... Rebecca, The Man Who Knew Too Much, To Catch a Thief, Jamaica Inn, Dial M for Murder, The Trouble with Harry (lots of fun).

I think that I liked Torn Curtain because I had a crush on Paul Newman and will have to watch it again.
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Matt Wilson
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Re: Is "The Birds" Hitchcock's best film?

Postby Matt Wilson » 02 Nov 2019, 20:00

I think The Birds is pretty great, and is probably the last film of such quality that Hitchcock made - although former BCBer Goldwax is telling me on Facebook how much better Frenzy is.

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Re: Is "The Birds" Hitchcock's best film?

Postby Powehi » 03 Nov 2019, 11:07

Matt Wilson wrote:I think The Birds is pretty great, and is probably the last film of such quality that Hitchcock made - although former BCBer Goldwax is telling me on Facebook how much better Frenzy is.


While the fall off in quality after The Birds was terrible, Hitch had a wonderful run of classics other directors can only dream about. The last film AH shot in London, Frenzy is well worth watching again though. First for that wonderfully sleazy performance from Barry Foster ("Got a place to stay?") and then that fabulous tracking shot down the stairs from the murder and out into the market.



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Flower
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Re: Is "The Birds" Hitchcock's best film?

Postby Flower » 03 Nov 2019, 12:53

Maybe I'll have to give Frenzy another go, it's been a very very long time since I've seen it.
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Re: Is "The Birds" Hitchcock's best film?

Postby Davey the Fat Boy » 08 Nov 2019, 16:21

I don’t dismiss the argument that The Birds could be seen as the apex of Hitchcock’s career. I DO think it is his most visceral film.

I’d personally put Psycho and Vertigo just above it - perhaps because they both retain a bit more of an ‘art-film’ visual poetry about them. But he really came at the horror with The Birds. I have no trouble thinking of it as the purest dose of his craft.
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Re: Is "The Birds" Hitchcock's best film?

Postby Sneelock » 08 Nov 2019, 16:55

I'd never offer "The Birds" up as his best but I certainly think it's among his most personal.
"Psycho" and his T.V. show were HUGE. He had carte blanche and this is what he decided to do.

none of the actors are "Name" stars. the director is the Name Star.
I love it. I took my adult daughter to see it at a revival house and the place was packed. It was such a great feeling to be in a room full of people who like the way the thing ends as much as I do.
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