HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Pathfinder
Skatetown, USA
Donbass
He Loves Me... He Loves Me Not
Mary Poppins Returns
Beyond the Sky
Sorry to Bother You
Last Days, The
Man Who Killed Hitler and Then The Bigfoot, The
Being Frank: The Chris Sievey Story
Once Upon a Time in London
King Lear
Under the Silver Lake
Satan's Mistress
Border
Lemonade Joe
Earth Maiden Arjuna
Sons of Katie Elder, The
Soldier, The
Mr. Topaze
Aquaman
One, Two, Three
Bad Times at the El Royale
Caretaker, The
Old Man and the Gun, The
Song of Bernadette, The
Creed II
Anna and the Apocalypse
Return of the Hero
White Reindeer, The
Lizzie
Wicked, Wicked
Faces Places
Strange Woman, The
Ralph Breaks the Internet
Sky Bandits
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse
Devil's Sword, The
Leprechaun Returns
Man in the Wilderness
   
 
Newest Articles
Monster Dog: Cujo on Blu-ray
For Christ's Sake: Jesus Christ Superstar and The Last Temptation of Christ
Not In Front of the Children: Inappropriate Kids Movies
Deeper into Ozploitation: Next of Kin and Fair Game
Between the Wars: Babylon Berlin Series 1&2 on DVD
Hard Luck Story: Detour on Blu-ray
Oh, What Happened to You? The Likely Lads on Blu-ray
Killer Apps: The Rise of the Evil 60s Supercomputers
How 1970s Can You Get? Cliff Richard in Take Me High vs Never Too Young to Rock
A Perfect Engine, An Eating Machine: The Jaws Series
Phwoar, Missus! Sexytime for Hollywood
He-Maniacs: Ridiculous 80s Action
All's Welles That Ends Welles: Orson Welles Great Mysteries Volume 1 on DVD
Shut It! The Sweeney Double Bill: Two Blu-rays from Network
Network Sitcom Movie Double Bill: Till Death Us Do Part and Man About the House on Blu-ray
   
 
  Bill and Coo Bird BrainsBuy this film here.
Year: 1948
Director: Dean Reisner
Stars: Ken Murray, George Burton, Elizabeth Walters, Burton's Birds
Genre: Comedy, Weirdo
Rating:  6 (from 1 vote)
Review: Here is producer Ken Murray to introduce the stars of the movie you're about to see, but he has been finding them temperamental. That's because they are two small birds named Bill and Coo, and they will be playing the romantic leads. Thier owner, George Burton, demonstrates what they can do with a tightrope, and then it is time for our story which takes place in the town of Chirpendale, which has everything a bird could want, a microcosm of society that has no worries. Well, apart from one...

Back in 1948, this novelty effort was a minor sensation, even garnering its own special Academy Award, and it's safe to say a whole film made out of this premise was not something moviemakers returned to very often. It helped in your appreciation if you were a bird lover, although other animals were involved as well, but while something like Paulie would be the closest equivalent from decades later, in this the amusement very much centred around how much the audience were entertained by what was basically lots of bird tricks.

It was notable how they did not fly away, and instead ran around the tiny set, behaviour that could be put down to the fact that Mr Burton had clipped their feathers, but does not quite excuse such scenes as the one where Bill and Coo go up in a balloon ride when presumably if they had their complete complement of feathers they could have flown up into the sky unaided. In spite of the way it was basically one little stunt after another, there was a story to this, and it did not feature Burton's Birds getting their revenge on their owner in an Alfred Hitchcock-style.

There was a villain in the piece, and he was The Black Menace, played by a crow which doesn't do very much apart from stalk the streets of Chirpendale, although he does set fire to the hotel at one point which fireman (or firebird) Bill puts out after saving the residents. Bill has been working on foiling this baddie, which appears to the sound of World War II bomber engine noise, but there's a distraction for the townsfolk when the inevitable circus arrives in the area. Why would that be? To fill up half the running time with yet more tricks, of course, such activity being the entire motive of the enterprise.

The main selling point however was not so much the tightrope walking or pretending to ride a motorbike (!) under the big top, but more that we were seeing the creatures acting out everyday (for humans) activity. So you'll see Bill at the wheel of a taxi, his mother doing the washing (with a washboard, then hangs up the clothes on the line), drinking in the bar (which has a one-armed bandit dispensing birdseed), and various other bits of business rendered bizarre by the cast. This was directed by Dean Reisner, an interesting chap who could list child star, top screenwriter and husband of Vampira among his achievements, but mostly you imagine him tearing his hair out trying to get the winged wonders to hit their marks and act on cue. It was some kind of accomplishment, that was for sure, but whether the performers enjoyed it as much as the audience was a moot point. Music by David Buttolph.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 2145 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star do you think makes the best coffee?
Emma Stone
Anna Kendrick
Michelle Rodriguez
Sir Patrick Stewart
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Andrew Pragasam
Graeme Clark
Enoch Sneed
Paul Shrimpton
Darren Jones
George White
Stately Wayne Manor
Paul Smith
   

 

Last Updated: