Monday, March 12, 2012

The Queue Continuum: Birdemic: Shock and Terror

Holy shit is this movie awful. It is so fucking bad that I cannot believe I hadn't seen it already.

More often than not, when Paul Scheer, Jason Mantzoukas, and June Diane Raphael select a film for their spectacularly funny podcast How Did This Get Made?, I have already seen it. What this says about me and my movie-viewing habits is probably damning, but the fact remains that of the 31 movies they have done up so far, I had seen 19 of them already (I've seen others since). Having just now seen Birdemic, I am positively giddy to listen to their newest episode.

I usually refrain from writing about them, even when positively shocked by the poor quality of the film. The voluminous work I could put forth regarding The Room would likely be my undoing.

Birdemic: Shock and Terror makes The Room look like Citizen Kane. All right, maybe that's not true, but I'd posit that Birdemic might actually be worse than The Room, which is saying a fucking lot. Writer, director, and (not shockingly) producer James Nguyen has absolutely no idea what he is doing.

For starters, he chooses what has to be one of Hitchcock's worst films to pay homage to. The Birds is utter horseshit. Rod Taylor is a non-actor, devoid of any charisma or gravitas, and finds himself cast alongside the abysmal Tippi Hedren, whose acting chops are shockingly just as limited as her daughter, Melanie Griffith. The Birds is absolutely the beginning of the end for Hitchcock, the first nail that is driven into the coffin of what had been a spectacular run, specifically putting an emphatic and decisive end to his otherwise sterling post-war work. That he became obsessed with Hedren later while working on Marnie, a film that not even Sean Connery could save, just serves as proof that Hitchcock had completely lost it. In choosing The Birds as his inspiration, Nguyen instantly forces the sane viewer to question his judgment.

That is the question raised before seeing the movie. The questions that arise while watching it are far more baffling. They are also questions that you need to ask yourself. While you also watch Birdemic. Do it.

You have to if for no other reason than to see a movie that has no knowledge of white-testing, boom mics, appropriate framing of a POV shot, the actual effects of global warming, sound recording, plotting, realistic animation of the movement of birds, the sound a gun makes, or countless other basic aspects of filmmaking. Say what you will about the ADR in The Room, but it puts this to shame.

Hell, watch this if for no other reason than there's a Ford Aerostar in it. It was filmed in 2008, at least eight years past the point at which I last saw a Ford Aerostar.

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