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1963 Original
1960 Original
1959 Original
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movie trailer (quicktime)

NOTE: This "Classic Spoiler" was sent in by Doug who calls it "One of my favorite thrillers: Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds."

The opening credits roll and then we cut to San Francisco. We see Melanie Daniels (Tippi Hedren) cross the street and go into a Bird Shop. She is ordering some type of Bird, when Mitch Brenner (Rod Taylor) walks in. He asks Melanie where he could find some lovebirds and she pretends to be a sales woman. She takes him over to a Parakeet cage and he asks if he could hold one. Reluctantly, she opens the cage and tries to firmly grasp a squirming bird. She loses her grip and the bird flits around the store. Mitch finally traps it under his hat and the real attendant puts it back in the cage. Mitch tells Melanie that he knew that she wasn't a salesperson, and was playing a trick on her. She tells him she thinks he's a louse. He tells her he was telling the truth about the lovebirds and wanted them for his sister. He walks out and Melanie races after him and gets his license plate number as he drives away. She goes back inside and orders lovebirds.

The next day, she goes to Mitch's apartment and a man tells her she shouldn't leave the birds there because Mitch won't be back till Monday. Mitch goes to Bodega Bay every weekend.

Then Melanie decides to go to Bodega Bay and she drives into the town and stops in front of a drugstore. She gets instructions to go to Annie Hayworth (Suzanne Pleshette) to get the Brenner girls' name. Melanie does so, and finds the little girls name is Cathy (Veronica Cartwright). Then she gets a boat and sails across the lake to the Brenner house. She quietly goes in and leaves the lovebirds on the table and goes back to the boat. Mitch comes out from the barn and sees the boat leaving and gets binoculars. He races to the docks as Melanie gets close to the pier. Then a gull swoops down and hits Melanie in the head. She begins to bleed.

Mitch takes her into a restaurant where Mrs. Brenner (Jessica Tandy) comes in while Mitch invites Melanie to dinner. Melanie tells Mitch she staying with her old friend Annie, but says she'll come for dinner. Melanie arrives for dinner and then afterwards she plays the piano as Mitch and Mrs. Brenner wash dishes. Mitch then escorts Melanie to her car and watches her drive off. He looks up and notices a lot of crows on the telephone line.

Melanie arrives at Annie's house and gets a call from Mitch to come to Cathy's birthday party. Melanie agrees and then hangs up. Annie's front door shudders and the two go and see who it is. A dead gull lies on the mat. Annie says it lost it's way in the dark, but Melanie points out that it isn't that dark out. Cut to Cathy's party, where the children are playing games. Mitch and Melanie walk up a sand dune and talk until the children begin to scream. Birds are swooping down pecking the children and Mitch, Melanie, Mrs. Brenner and Annie must save them. Finally the birds fly off. Melanie asks if this is normal. Mitch shakes his head grimly. Later that night, they all have dinner and later are sitting on the sofa. Melanie looks up and sees a small bird in front of the chimney, and then all heck breaks loose. Thousands Birds gush from the fireplace, and they fly around the room. Melanie grabs Cathy and Mrs. Brenner and the three struggle toward the door. They succeed and they get to safety while Mitch shoos them out. The china is all broken when a policemen comes. He doesn't believe them about the two attacks. He leaves. Mitch tells Melanie she should stay in the guest bedroom and she agrees.

Mrs. Brenner drops Cathy off at school and goes to see Farmer Fawcett. She is told he hasn't been seen in a while, but goes in his house anyway. She observes broken china like the china that the birds had earlier destroyed. She goes into his torn apart bedroom and sees his body lying on the floor, oozing blood, his eyes pecked out. She screams and flees the house. She goes to bed and Melanie makes her tea. Mrs. Brenner asks repeatedly if Melanie thinks Cathy will be all right at the school.

Melanie then goes to the school and sits down until the school gets out. While she sitting, behind her, black crows are gathering on the jungle gym. Melanie sees a crow fly past and she watches land on the infested playground. She races back into the school and tells Annie, and they pretend to have a fire drill. The birds then launch a massive attack on the children as they are running towards town. Melanie, Cathy, and an injured girl get into a parked car, and are saved.

Melanie then goes to the diner from earlier, and calls her father the newspaper editor. She tells him of the attack, and the restaurant becomes tense. Then Mitch comes in, and Melanie looks out the window. She sees a gull collide with a gas station attendant's head, killing him. "Look!" she cries. "They're attacking again!" A gas puddle blossoms, and slips down toward a man lighting a cigar. Melanie sees this and tried to yell to him to not light the cigar. He does anyway, and he explodes, and the gas turns to a line of fire.

Melanie runs outside just as the gulls swing down and begin to assault the civilians. Melanie pushed her way toward a phone booth, a slams the door shut. The birds smash into the glass over and over, until Mitch comes and grabs Melanie.

They run back into the restaurant, and see the terrified customers huddled in the back. A mother accuses Melanie of being the cause of all this, and Melanie slaps her. Mitch takes Melanie to Annie's to retrieve Cathy, to find Annie's body on the steps. She has marks all over her, and we see Cathy sobbing at the window. Cathy tells Melanie and Mitch that Annie saved Cathy by pushing her aside, and the birds covered her.

They arrive back at Mitch's house, and Mitch seals all the nooks and crannies of the house. Then the birds attack. They peck the house violently, but the boards across the windows and doors keep the family safe.

They all eventually fall asleep, until Melanie wakes and hears fluttering up in the attack. She goes upstairs (Very creepy) and slowly opens the door. She sees a giant hole in the ceiling, and shines her flashlight on the bed. Hundreds of birds pounce on her, and begin to relentlessly assault Melanie. She tries desperately to fend them off, but goes unconscious until Mitch and Mrs. Brenner save her.

She then wakes up and, thinking she's still in the bedroom, hits Mitch, until he calms her down. They bandage her up, and Mitch goes to get the car, because Melanie needs a hospital.

They go out, and the last shot in the film is of the car driving away, with birds behind it, watching it carefully.


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