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Unmissable 5 Stars
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Tragic 1 Star

Rod Taylor
Tippi Hedren
Jessica Tandy.
Alfred Hitchcock.
Evan Hunter.
Running Time
119 minutes

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5 Star Empire Rating

The Birds
Hitchcock classic

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A young beautiful socialite is pecked by a seagull on a visit Bodega Bay, a quiet seaside town where she has followed a potential love interest. The violence by birds proceeds to escalates to worrying proportions.


One day in northern California birds decide to wage war on humanity. After a few isolated pecks and eye-gouges, a mass assault is launched, and macho local Taylor, with dippy society girl Hedren in tow, has to make a stand against the gulls and budgies.

A rare foray into the outright fantastic, this offers no explanation for the crisis and thus confronts its prosaic characters with the blindly irrational. Great Creepy Moment: the birds slowly gathering on a climbing frame outside the schooi as Tippi has a fag while the children sing. Best Downright Exciting Moment: the house under attack and Tippi's unwise venture into the attic.

Genuinely disturbing thriller classic from the master of suspense.

Reviewed by Kim Newman

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Your Reviews

Average user rating for The Birds
Empire Star Rating

Here come the Bird-bastards.

Epic. Awe-inspiring. Outstanding. If you cant find something to love about this timeless masterpiece, then the antagonist's have already swarmed your town and have taken away your chance to watch it, but if they haven't taken over the world yet, then do yourself a favor and watch this amazing movie ...before its to late. ... More

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Posted by Jericho117 at 07:09, 17 October 2013 | Report This Post

"It's the end of the world."

Adapted from a Daphne du Maurier story and starring Tippi Hedren in her first and arguably best role, The Birds is a true Hitchcock classic. A gripping tale of man versus nature and the human survival instinct, masterfully staged and beautifully shot, this is a first-rate suspenser that shows no signs of aging. ... More

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Posted by movienut707 at 14:32, 08 October 2013 | Report This Post

Hitchcock at his best

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 ... More

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Posted by neopol at 11:13, 12 March 2012 | Report This Post


I can't quite see why this film gets so much love. Compared to Hitchcock's other, far superior films like Psycho, Rear Window, North by Northwest, Vertigo and Dial M For Murder, this doesn't hold a candle. Don't get me wrong, I love Hitchcock, and it's by no means a terrible film, but I was genuinely disappointed with The Birds. It has bad acting, almost no suspense (apart from the final scene), and it takes about 50 minutes for anything to really happen. Maybe it was because my hopes were s... More

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Posted by Whistler at 22:10, 20 June 2011 | Report This Post

I watched this film for the first time recently and I thought it was pretty decent. Slow starting off but when the action started it really started. Decent acting although the little girl annoyed me at times with her incessant screaming. Just feed the birds some bird seed and they'll leave you be. :) Hitchcock as good as a director as he is really misses something vital.... The ending. I was a little bit confused as to the way it just ended. All in all it's a good film and highly reco... More

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Posted by PureAinmhi at 12:23, 03 December 2008 | Report This Post

The Birds

I'm dreading the remake of this. Why can't Hollywood leave classic films well alone? The original starts off slowly, but only so as to establish the characters and build up the suspense before the horror begins. The bird's-eye view of one of the scenes of destruction is brilliantly done, and overall the special effects were very good and even quite graphic for their day. Like Psycho, The Birds was very innovative and successful in its genre but unfortunately paved the way for many cheap and tack... More

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Posted by Swifty170 at 01:21, 19 November 2008 | Report This Post

Its a lttle dated but in context of the time its fantastic. The effort put into getting all those birds is staggering..... ... More

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Posted by Poison_mushroom at 13:49, 08 February 2008 | Report This Post

Jaws with birds and no water! ... More

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Posted by mojorising at 13:45, 19 August 2006 | Report This Post

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