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Parrots and Other Birds in Movies


misswonderly3
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This thread idea was inspired by one of our fellow posters here, who commented that she was thinking of getting a bird for a pet.  The idea of a pet bird got me thinking about birds in movies, particularly parrots (but there are many others....)

 

Because parrots can "talk" and are extremely intelligent, they make for fun co-stars in the movies. They can also be mean (hey, just like people !)

For some reason, the first movie I thought of with a parrot in it was The Third Man. Remember the scene where Holly Martins is trying to escape or hide or something (sorry, it's been a while since I've seen the film) and he accidentally stumbles into a parrot cage, whereupon the creature squawks and n!ps him ? It always makes me laugh, because for a while it seems as though everyone is out to get poor old Holly, even the parrot !

 

I dunno, maybe this thread will fly (couldn't resist) and maybe it won't. Any other bird stories from the movies?  (Hey, I left the most obvious one for someone else to discuss...)

 

(not allowed to use the word "n i p"  here, hence the exclamation point instead of the "i".)

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This thread idea was inspired by one of our fellow posters here, who commented that she was thinking of getting a bird for a pet.  The idea of a pet bird got me thinking about birds in movies, particularly parrots (but there are many others....)

 

Because parrots can "talk" and are extremely intelligent, they make for fun co-stars in the movies. They can also be mean (hey, just like people !)

For some reason, the first movie I thought of with a parrot in it was The Third Man. Remember the scene where Holly Martins is trying to escape or hide or something (sorry, it's been a while since I've seen the film) and he accidentally stumbles into a parrot cage, whereupon the creature squawks and n!ps him ? It always makes me laugh, because for a while it seems as though everyone is out to get poor old Holly, even the parrot !

 

I dunno, maybe this thread will fly (couldn't resist) and maybe it won't. Any other bird stories from the movies?  (Hey, I left the most obvious one for someone else to discuss...)

 

(not allowed to use the word "n i p"  here, hence the exclamation point instead of the "i".)

My wife and I frequently watch The Big Steal with Robert Mitchum, Jane Greer, William Bendix and Patrick Knowles.  One of my favorite movies.  Wife always refers to it as "the parrot movie."  Couple of funny scenes near the beginning involving a parrot.  Not sure what it says as it supposedly is in parrot Spanish.

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About the most obvious "Bird" movie, all I ask:

 

When they saw the birds congregating on the jungle gym, why did they leave the school? They would have been safer staying inside! By running outside, they were just sitting ducks, ripe for the plucking! The poor teacher died because of this decision.

 

---

 

With that out of the way...

 

I really like the scene in Mr. Hobbs Takes a Vacation where James Stewart goes birding with John McGiver (aka "The Butterfly Collector" on Gilligan's Island). The scene is funny because Stewart has no idea what he's doing and has to feign interest in seeing all these birds that McGiver claims that he's seeing.  

 

I also like Kevin in Up, the bird companion of Carl, Dug and Russell as they try to escape from the robot dogs. 

 

I seem to remember some type of bird in Love Crazy but not enough to say anything about it.

 

Birds... they're the stuff that dreams are made of. 

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About the most obvious "Bird" movie, all I ask:

 

When they saw the birds congregating on the jungle gym, why did they leave the school? They would have been safer staying inside! By running outside, they were just sitting ducks, ripe for the plucking! The poor teacher died because of this decision.

 

---

 

With that out of the way...

 

I really like the scene in Mr. Hobbs Takes a Vacation where James Stewart goes birding with John McGiver (aka "The Butterfly Collector" on Gilligan's Island). The scene is funny because Stewart has no idea what he's doing and has to feign interest in seeing all these birds that McGiver claims that he's seeing.  

 

I also like Kevin in Up, the bird companion of Carl, Dug and Russell as they try to escape from the robot dogs. 

 

I seem to remember some type of bird in Love Crazy but not enough to say anything about it.

 

Birds... they're the stuff that dreams are made of. 

 

Thanks for the reminder, speedy, of that great last line in The Maltese Falcon ! (courtesy of Shakespeare.)  Yeah, everyone was after that "jewel-encrusted bird", and they never did get their hands on it. 

 

Everyone says Up is a really sweet movie; I keep meaning to see it, maybe now I'll get around to it, if only for the "Kevin" character.

 

From what I can remember about Mr. Hobbs Takes a Vacation, Jimmy Stewart's character thought his neighbouring beach house resident was boring, not least because his idea of an exciting time was to go bird-watching  ( and play bridge? can't remember).

 

As for The Birds, yeah, why didn't the teacher and kids stay in the school, instead of making a desperate run for it? Of course, those birds were pretty determined; maybe in the end it wouldn't have made much difference.

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Does this count?

 

 

giphy.gif

We watched it last night!  

We try to watch a lot of scify and horror movies during October and have this one on a DVD set.  Worst bird ever made, but the movie is not too bad.  Not good, but not bad.

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Thanks for the reminder, speedy, of that great last line in The Maltese Falcon ! (courtesy of Shakespeare.)  Yeah, everyone was after that "jewel-encrusted bird", and they never did get their hands on it. 

 

Everyone says Up is a really sweet movie; I keep meaning to see it, maybe now I'll get around to it, if only for the "Kevin" character.

 

From what I can remember about Mr. Hobbs Takes a Vacation, Jimmy Stewart's character thought his neighbouring beach house resident was boring, not least because his idea of an exciting time was to go bird-watching  ( and play bridge? can't remember).

 

As for The Birds, yeah, why didn't the teacher and kids stay in the school, instead of making a desperate run for it? Of course, those birds were pretty determined; maybe in the end it wouldn't have made much difference.

 

I believe that the Maltese Falcon statue appears as set decor in another film, but I can't remember which one it is.  I love Peter Lorre's meltdown after Sydney Greenstreet discovers that the statue is a fake.  "You...you imbecile! You bloated idiot!" Then he starts crying.

 

Up is a fantastic movie.  The opening montage showing Carl and Ellie's life together is so sweet and so heart-wrenching.  I love Kevin, because he's hilarious.

 

In 'Mr. Hobbs' I believe in addition to birdwatching, the couple also say that they play bridge and don't drink.  Though we later learn that I think both the husband and wife (or perhaps just one of them) secretly drinks on the side or something.  Then the wife is very flirtatious toward James Stewart. 

 

In addition to the crows featured in The Birds, the beginning of the film also features Tippi Hedren working in a bird store and purchasing love birds.

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Everyone says Up is a really sweet movie; I keep meaning to see it, maybe now I'll get around to it, if only for the "Kevin" character.

 

See it for "Kevin" (and for Dug), stay for the sweetness.

One critic used Up to explain the mechanics of why Pixar Is Better Than Everybody Else in the different mechanics of how they craft their stories with actual personal emotional involvement.

Short version:  Imagine Russell, the Boy Scout, as a character in a Dreamworks or Illusion CGI movie...Wouldn't be quite the same.

 

As for The Birds, yeah, why didn't the teacher and kids stay in the school, instead of making a desperate run for it? Of course, those birds were pretty determined; maybe in the end it wouldn't have made much difference.

 

That's just what they were expecting them to do....

 

But yes, Hitchcock knew the value of birds to our culture:

 

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And then there's The Ladykillers ( the proper version, Ealing Studios, 1955).  The nice old lady whose home the duplicitous crooks are renting has a pet parrot, who escapes his cage and won't go back into it. She elicits the help of the crooks, with mixed results. You get the feeling the parrot knows all about these guys and is purposely making fools of them (hey, parrots are smart.)

 

Anyway, along comes Alec Guinness, who saves the day. This clip reminded me of how good that movie is. If you like that sort of thing, which I do.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hEr-xM5d6oc

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My favorite parrot in film is Warner's 1948 animated "Dough Ray Me-Ow".

 

Louie the Parrot finds a written will stating that his master bequeaths the family fortune not to him, but to his fellow household pet, a lunk-headed cat named Heathcliff, with the proviso that Louie is next in line to inherit the wealth if Heathcliff dies. So, Louie plots the untimely demise of Heathcliff.

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in re: THE BIRDS (1963)

 

I really recommend the radio version done years before the movie with HERBERT MARSHALL.

 

the 1963 FILM- while it has a lot going for it, is ultimately a failure in my eyes, but a fascinating failure with breathtaking moments.

 

and I adore everything about the scene in the diner, from the mannish old bird lady who looks kind of like Ernest Thesiger's twin sister who hogged all the testosterone in the womb to the BATGUANO NUTS middle aged white lady with the kids who has the 24 karat gall to accuse Tippi of somehow "bringing the birds."

 

 

 

we all know or have met a lady like this, amirite?

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How about cartoon birds? No cartoon bird I like more than Daffy Duck.

 

Daffy had a particularly memorable series of cartoons with Bugs Bunny, with Daffy as the sad sack loser trying in vain to upstage the ultra cool wise guy wabbit. Here's a scene from the first of their encounters, Rabbit Fire in which Daffy proved himself to be a master of disguise. And, taking a look at the bottom of this photo, it's even apparent that he was talented enough to speak Spanish.

 

Rabbit_Fire_S-567588426-large.jpg

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How about cartoon birds? No cartoon bird I like more than Daffy Duck.

 

Daffy had a particularly memorable series of cartoons with Bugs Bunny, with Daffy as the sad sack loser trying in vain to upstage the ultra cool wise guy wabbit. Here's a scene from the first of their encounters, Rabbit Fire in which Daffy proved himself to be a master of disguise. And, taking a look at the bottom of this photo, it's even apparent that he was talented enough to speak Spanish.

 

Rabbit_Fire_S-567588426-large.jpg

 

Good point, Tom, I'd thought of Warner Brothers cartoons, too. As did Janet0312  (see below):

 

Janet0312 wrote:

"My favorite parrot in film is Warner's 1948 animated "Dough Ray Me-Ow".

 

Louie the Parrot finds a written will stating that his master bequeaths the family fortune not to him, but to his fellow household pet, a lunk-headed cat named Heathcliff, with the proviso that Louie is next in line to inherit the wealth if Heathcliff dies. So, Louie plots the untimely demise of Heathcliff. "  

 

My only problem with Warner Brothers' cartoon * bird characters - in fact, just about all Warner Bros. cartoon characters- is that I think of them all as human, even the ones who are animals or birds. Come on, Bugs is just a smart cool guy in disguise. Same with Daffy  (although he's not as cool as Bugs, he gets riled way too easily for that.)

 

And what about Tweety Bird? Tweety is also a human disguised as a canary. Is there even one time when Tweety doesn't outsmart poor old Sylvester? ( who, again, is just a person in puddytat form.)

 

* Actually, this isn't a "problem". I love the Bugs Bunny / Warner Bros. cartoons exactly the way they are.

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I like the owl in They Died With Their Boots On.

 

Errol Flynn, who has already irritated Olivia de Havilland's father, wants to meet with de Havilland with whom he has fallen in love.  While de Havilland's father is away, Flynn and de Havilland arrange for a rendezvous on her balcony.  They enlist Hattie McDaniel, de Havilland's maid, to play lookout.  McDaniel devises a signal, if she spots de Havilland's father, she will hoot like an owl.  First, there's a false alarm and McDaniel employs her signal.  After the mistake is realized, Flynn and de Havilland continue their meeting.  Then McDaniel ends up falling asleep and a real owl starts hooting.  Flynn dives off the balcony and runs.

 

Then my favorite part, McDaniel says to the owl: "Why you have to wake up for you old devil? Shut up and get out!" 

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Another of my favourite Warners cartoon birds:

 

Screen%2BShot%2B2015-04-09%2Bat%2B00.06.

 

Beaky Buzzard in Bugs Bunny Gets the Boid. Beaky (who got that name later, he was called "Killer" by his mother in this one) only appeared in two cartoons during the '40s (the other The Bashful Buzzard).

 

There wasn't much doubt that Beaky (not the brightest bird in the cartoon world) didn't have much of a chance with a wise guy like Bugs. There was a certain sympathetic quality about this slow thinking, slow talking bird. Too bad he only had one screen encounter with the rabbit.

 

And, yes, you're right, MissW, all these Warners cartoon rabbits and birds do seem pretty human (except they're a lot more amusing).

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