Have you ever been attacked by birds? I have. I was at the beach feeding bread
crumbs to the seagulls, when I dropped the bag. The bread crumbs spilled everywhere
and tens of birds swooped down around me. They practically formed a wall of feathers
and flapping sounds. Luckily though, those birds weren't trying to peck my eyes out and
kill me. That is exactly what happens in both the short story and the movie, both titled
The Birds. Both of them are quite similar, in the aspect of birds attacking people and
living near water. There are many differences though, ranging from the characters
connections to one another and reasoning for the birds attacks.
There are some similarities between Hitchcock's film and Daphne du Maurier's
story. The main similarity between the two is probably quite obvious. No, I'm not talking
about how birds in both stories entered the house through the chimney.ÃÂ¹
I am speaking
of the fact that in both of the movies there were birds, and they attacked people. They
were even the same kind of birds, the smaller ones you are prone to seeing in your yard
and seagulls. The fact that the birds were similar could have something to do with the
similar settings of the two stories. In both, it is set rather far from a large city and also
The connections between the characters in Hitchcock's film were quite different
than the ones in du Maurier's story. In du Maurier's story they are quite simple. Nat
Hocken is married and has two children, and there is a farm down the roads where
people they are friends with live. Viola! It is rather easy to understand, as apposed the
relationships in Hitchcock's film. The film's relationships are filled with complex love
triangles, no, they are more like love polygons. There is Mitch Brenner (Rod Taylor)
ÃÂ¹ If you thought this was the most obvious thing, you're an idiot.
" More on water later.
And the multiple women that all want to be with him, although for different reasons.
Lydia Brenner (Jessica Tandy), Mitch's mother, is afraid to be abandoned by Mitch as
she was when her husband died. Cathy Brenner (Veronica Cartwright) loves and looks
up to her older brother and wants to spend time with him. Then, there is the rather
typical Hollywood plotline consisting of the exgirlfriend, Annie Hayworth (Suzanne
Pleshette), and the new girlfriend, Melanie Daniels (Tippi Hedren), both wanting the
leading male because of romantic interest.
Another rather major difference between the two stories is the reason for the
attacks the birds made. It was made pretty clear in the short story that it was the tides
(which were cause by the unusual wind) that caused the birds to attack. I found that a
bit unbelievable. I have see ocean tides cause many a strange thing, this includes the
devastation of sand castles and all those inside them," as well as willing people to speak
using surfing lingo. Through out al of these strange occurrences, I can say that I have
never seen the ocean's waves cause birds to go nuts and attack people. Perhaps, this
is the reason Hitchcock decided to let you figure out the reason the birds attacked on
your own. So that if you don't like the reason the birds are attacking, it's your own fault.
Also, seeing as how the setting for this story is Bodega Bay the reasoning couldn't have
included ocean waves for a few reasons. It is a bay not an ocean. Also bays don't get
waves; well not waves important enough to excite bird attacks!
So, as you very well know, there are many a difference between the two versions
of The Birds, but luckily the both had the same premise to them. This is a very good
thing because few other normally nonthreatening animals can evoke such fear as birds.
Think about it, if Hitchcock's movie was called The Rabbits no one would have been
afraid. Although Monty Python may prove me wrong. In conclusion, there are also
many other differences and similarities between the two stories, and I will get into them
later if I am forced to write a follow-up paper.
" These sand people whom we should mourn