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Birds Review Hitchcock

Birds Review Hitchcock

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Published by shanmason93
A review on Hitchcock's the birds.
A review on Hitchcock's the birds.

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Published by: shanmason93 on Feb 10, 2013
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12/25/2013

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Birds Review (1963)
Fig.1
Birds Poster 1963
(c.1963)
Alfred Hitchcock’s, The Bird
s is one of his most influential films, which is driven by its vast success in thesuspenseful build in the first half of the film. The film explores cutting edge special effects around itscharacters, and various cinematic techniques to build tension as the plot progresses.Hitchcock cleverly utilizes a lack of musical audio in juxtaposition to the jaunty violins of psycho. In thebirds, instead it would seem the audio is focused on the cries of birdsong which build in conjunctionwith the plot to create the impression of the massing birds. Hitchcock drives suspense in the audio of birdsong by carefully choosing when to upgrade and decrease the volume. In the climactic scenes wherethe birds pose as a major threat to the characters the volume and intensity of audio is increased. Inmoments of suspense the volume is similarly moves towards a muffle. This creates a strong sense of claustrophobia or strength of the massing birds which supports the special effects in the suspense of thefilm. Finfrock talks about how horror is established through the amount of birds in the film
“As Tippi
Hedren smokes a cigarette, nervously waiting for Suzanne Pleshette to finish with the young students,a single crow lands on the nearby jungle-
gym. It’s just a single bird. Nothing incredibly remarkable.
Then, a second one lands. Still nothing worth noting, not even when a third bird lands nearby. Butthen there
’s that incredible shot, where Hedren turns around and we see hundreds and hundreds of birds, eerily stationary, threatening. It’s one of Hitchcock’s very best moments.” (Finfrock)
 
The birdsgather most of their strength in their numbers, most of the successful tension and suspense from theopening scenes is generated
when the birds don’t play a prominence in the film. Shots which
foreshadow the later plot such as the mass of birds in the San Francisco skyline at the very beginning of 
 
the story (or the scene described above) are some of the most positive contributions to the film andhelp to map out the horror in the attacks of the birds.
Fig.2
Birds gathering on playground apparatus
 
Alike to most of his films, Hitchcock carefully considered character and the role stereotypes play withinhis narrative a
s explained by Anderson “
I think all of them are present: the icy blonde, the suggestivebanter, the sinister brunette, the precocious child, the female in eyeglasses, the glib discussion of murder, the domineering mother, the victimized female
. (Anderson, 2012).
The role of stereotypes
lays fundamental to our expectation of the film and more importantly the director’s ability tomanipulate the viewer’s understandings of character in order to produce a sense of horror in this case.
Hitchcock pays particular attention to the female figures, the three females (posing the awkward lovetriangle between the mother, Melanie and Annie) centered on the singular male (Mitch). The lovetriangle, the feud over Mitch, progresses as a subtext alongside the main theme of the film. It is
particularly noticeable the change of form from Melanie’s character from start to finish. Melanie isintroduced as a powerful character reflective of 1963 she is portrayed as a woman that doesn’t need a
man to stand up alongside her, as was the stereotypical image of women pre 60
s. However in the final
scenes Melanie’s character is broken and fragile resting in the mothers arms. Anderson voices his
opinion on the conscious decision to mold the character of Melanie
“By the end, when the self 
-assured,independent, and superciliously smug Melanie Daniels from the early scenes has been reduced to acowering, needy, child/woman, I have the nagging feeling that the film (aka Hitchcock) views this assome kind of triumph; as if her breakdown has made he
r more human.” (Anderson, 2012).
Hitchcockcould similarly be responding to the attitude of love at the time, thus the lovebirds remain a strongmotif throughout the film. It seems inevitable that the two lovebirds (Melanie and Mitch) lay in tattersbut still together and dependent on each other towards the climax. Almost an antithesis to the inventionof the pill, that the conventional way of love and love making in particular the emotional aspects
shouldn’t be completely discarded because sex is safely available to the general public for the f 
irst time.The ending of the birds sets the main controversy for film critics, for many the lack of meaning behindthe birds attacks which is never explained inside the running time is easy to dismiss but for others it

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