‘The Birds’ and the BAFTAs…

16 02 2012

‘A good film is when the price of the dinner, the theatre admission and the babysitter were worth it.’

‘Drama is life with the dull bits cut out.’

‘There is no terror in the bang, only in the anticipation of it.’

‘The length of a film should be directly related to the endurance of the human bladder.’

Alfred Hitchcock (1889 -1980) – British Film Director and Producer.

It is safe to go outside now.

‘The Birds’ have flown. 

A few days ago I threw back the curtains to reveal a scene, transported to our corner of  ‘the Shire’, from straight out Hitchcock’s 1963 suspense thriller.

There they were, poised, watching, waiting ready to pounce, cloaking the branches of every tree along the lane and jostling for position on the sagging telephone wire.  

A trilling phone broke the silence. The frantic call from aged neighbours, ‘Have you seen the birds? Do you know what they are?’   

By this point our apian intruders were engaged in a feeding frenzy, making short work of stripping bare an ornamental crab apple tree, in the next door front garden.  

I’m not a ‘twitcher’ – in the ornithological sense – but I am quite fond of Bill Oddie, and I do have a set of 10/6 binoculars and a pocket field study guide of British birds. After a careful observaton and matching exercise it transpires our visitors were fieldfares.   

Fieldfares are large, colourful thrushes, much like a mistle thrush in general size, shape and behaviour. They are very social birds, spending the winter in flocks of anything from a dozen or two to several hundred strong, roaming the countryside – a delightful and attractive part of the winter scene.

Flitting from ‘The Birds’ to the BAFTAs… 

I thoroughly enjoyed this year’s Orange British Academy Film Awards , firstly because, for once, I had actually seen a fair number of the nominees, and secondly, more importantly, I didn’t have to put up with over two hours of unfunny ramblings from the seriously egotistical Jonathan ‘Woss’.     

After a six-year break, Stephen Fry donned his bow tie and returned to the lectern. It was a pleasure to welcome him back, and an infinitely more enjoyable experience in his company.

As for the films; it was no real surprise to see ‘The Artist’ coming out as the night’s big winner, with seven awards, including the prestigious Best Film, Best Director- for Michael Hazanavicius, Best Screenplay, and Leading Actor – with Jean Dujardin beating off stiff opposition from Brad Pitt, George Clooney, Gary Oldman and Michel Fassbender.

I was pleased to see ‘Tinker, Tailor , Soldier, Spy’ receiving recognition as Outstanding British Film, and in the category of  best Adapted Screenplay, while Meryl Streep’s  Leading Actress award was well deserved, for her excellent  ‘Iron Lady’ performance.

Michelle Williams, will be disappointed to have missed out, for her lead role in ‘My Week with Marilyn’, but the Oscars are just around the corner and the American Academy may think differently.   











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