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The Bird with the Crystal Plumage [Blu-ray]
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Sam Dalmas (Tony Musante) is an American reporter living in Rome who witnesses what appears to be a murder. Trapped by a glass wall, he can't intervene, but does manage to scare off the killer. Wounded, the victim survives, and Dalmas's curiosity drives him to look further into the story, but he soon finds himself and his girlfriend in jeopardy and stalked by the would-be murderer. Director Dario Argento's debut film is a remarkable work, more restrained than many of his later films. Based on an obscure l950s pulp novel, Bird draws heavily on Hitchcock, as well as on American novelists such as Dashiell Hammett and Cornell Woolrich. At the same time, its execution makes it a highly original, inventive, and fast-paced film that plays with the conventions of the thriller genre. As was often the case with Hitchcock's work, Dalmas is a spectator to the original crime, reflecting the voyeuristic role of the film audience. He's an ordinary guy who unravels the circumstances of the crime until he comes across the most unlikely scenario, a device also reminiscent of Hitchcock. The score, editing, and camera work, however, give the film a distinctly Italian stamp, and established Argento as a stylish, innovative director to watch. The scene in which Dalmas is chased through the streets by a gun-toting assassin, in particular, is a little gem of suspense. Modern-day thrillers should hope to live up to this film's intelligence, energy, and intricate plot twists. --Jerry Renshaw --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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The story we have here is of Sam Dalmas, an American writer on holiday in Italy who found himself in the wrong place, at the wrong time. stuck between two glass doors, Dalmas witnesses an assault a black-coated criminal did on a woman inside a closed gallery. An incident that turns him, with the police's help, an investigator on the case. Finding clues involving artwork, back noises, voices; all linked to a serial killer who has been terrorizing the city and who has murdered three women for a month.
As a story, the plotline is exclusively focused on the crime case. Indeed, we don't know much about the characters' past, how Sam and his girlfriend met, and how they are viewing their relationship, or their job. Only the most basic elements do we know about their lives. Therefore, instead of being a character-driven story, we have instead a situation driven plot; that of a murder plotline which creates reactions from the characters who are caught in its web. So don't expect any grand psychological diving into Sam's psychological profile if you are watching this movie. You just sit down and enjoy the 96 minutes ride Argento is giving. Whether it is the gorgeous sets by Dario Micheli, Vittorio Storaro's subtle cinematography, Ennio Morricone's music, Argento's tight camera movements, and the very artistic murders he displays in his movies. Something that may shock some viewers as the violence is graphical, blunt and not for the faint of heart.Read more ›
An American reporter staying in Rome witnesses a truly shattering event one evening when he sees a gruesome assault takes place inside of an art gallery. Barred from interfering with the proceedings due to huge sliding glass doors, Sam Dalmas can only look on with horror as two figures, one clad entirely in black and the other a woman, struggle with each other over a very shiny knife.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
now OOP, but if you can get this edition (Blue Underground) snag it - unlike other editions this is in the correct aspect ratio, which for a film as visually compelling and... Read morePublished 3 months ago by vishnu
Not as good as I remember it being. But I am still glad to have it. Some very amusing humour in there that surprised me. Early Argento & the best of his 3 'animal' themed films.Published 16 months ago by Nicky Blade
Arrived unscathed and on time. Love Argento flicks. For the most part, I haven't been dissatisfied yet. Read morePublished 20 months ago by ilikemovies
Beautifully shot by Vittorio Storaro, this is a stylish and fun Hitchcock-like thriller. (To me it feels more Hitchcock than gaillo). Read morePublished on May 19 2011 by K. Gordon
I saw this movie after seeing many other films from the master of horror Dario Argento and I was a little scared about this one but surprisingly I found it very interesting for a... Read morePublished on Dec 24 2003 by Yannick Villeneuve-Monast
Work number one by Dario Argento, this movie is also referred to as the original matrix to the Italian Giallo Movies. Check out the reason why. Read morePublished on Oct. 19 2002 by Wildenbruck
I gave this 3 stars; I would have given it 3.5 if that were possible. I watched the VCI Home Video "uncut widescreen presentation" on DVD; I don't know if that's the same version... Read morePublished on Sept. 7 2002 by David F. Nolan
I am a big fan of Dario Argento's films, and "Bird" is rather different from his later works, but it still packs quite a punch. Read morePublished on July 1 2002
I lost a bet and had to watch this movie but I didn't mind becouse I had heard it was one of his better films (Dario Argento). Read morePublished on April 5 2002 by scott belba