Alfred Hitchcock's Narrative Techniques In The Birds

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The Birds, which introduced Alfred Hitchcock who known as the master of suspense, as its director in 1963, is one of the oldest horror films in American history. In my paper, I will analyze the uses of narrative in the movie supported by the signs, images and metaphors.

The film told about bird attacks to people who lived in Bodega Bay in California (“Alfred Hitchcock - The Birds 1963”, 2016). These attacks took place in a few days. The plot of the movie was well -organized, and it began with the coincidence in which a lawyer (Mitch Brenner) met a young socialite (Melanie Daniels) at a bird shop in San Francisco. The film ends with the car carrying the love birds that Mitch had gone to purchase when he met Melanie, the Brenner’s,
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The images got from the film not only demonstrate what happens in the movie but also give the functions of different individuals in the society. The events that happen later in the film had some signs at the beginning. Events such as the death of the local farmer who had close ties to the Brenner family and the attack on the school by the same birds where many scholars had injuries were a preview of the upcoming assault (“Alfred Hitchcock - The Birds 1963”, 2016). Mitch and Melanie met when Brenner was purchasing lovebirds. Their interactions and exchanges at this shop led to them having feelings for each other. Therefore, the canaries that are considered as lovebirds symbolize the characters in the story. For instance, Melanie is considered to be like a bird. In the beginning of the film, Mitch catches a bird that Melanie releases in the bird shop and says, “Back in your gilded cage, Melanie Daniels.”

There is no clear meaningful reason of the bird attacks in the film, but the metaphorical reason is very obvious. The bird attacks, symbolize the dominant character Lydia’s rage and her struggle to be the respected, precious female of the family. Whenever she got close to Mitch an attack occurred and in the end when Melanie took Lydia’s position in the family, the birds attacked Melanie. Consequently, this shows that the birds act like they are taking the revenge of

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