Suck It, Hitchcock 

Birdemic: A Masterpiece of Disastrous Proportions

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ROD AND NATHALIE deserve happiness. The hard-working Rod (Alan Bagh) makes deals worth "one million dollars!" in his "high-tech sales career"; Nathalie (Whitney Moore) is a bubbly Victoria's Secret model whose looks offset some worrisome signs of mental disability. (On their first date, she shows Rod a picture of her cat, then proclaims, "If I could afford it, I'd have at least 10 of them!") Earnest and kind, Rod and Nathalie do all the things new couples do: Attend pumpkin festivals! Awkwardly dance to impromptu musical numbers! Sensually rub their feet together in dingy hotel rooms! And then the birdemic begins.

Birdemic: Shock and Terror—reportedly made for $10,000 by amateur writer/director James Nguyen, and riding a wave of internet meme-dom of the so-bad-it's-great variety—played last week at the Bridgetown Comedy Festival, and opens this weekend at the Clinton Street Theater. I recommend it highly. For its first half, Birdemic is a relationship drama, albeit one made by someone who has apparently never seen human beings interact with each other. The second half is a film about murderous CG birds, albeit one made by someone who apparently doesn't really know what birds are or what they look like. The acting is on par with that of a high-end porno, the CG seems to have been created using the full computational power of an Atari 2600, and Nguyen appears to have shot his opus on the VHS camcorder that was stolen from your parents during that family trip to Yellowstone in 1989.

Before I forget, I should note that sometimes—not always, but sometimesBirdemic's birds spit acid and/or explode. (Never thought of that, did you Hitchcock?!) If you're wondering about the cause of the birdemic, a pissy scientist offers some explanation: "Hey, I thought I told you to stand back!" he tells Rod and Nathalie. "These birds are contaminated. They have bird flu virus. Now go away."

Birdemic is pretty amazing: It's a perfect blend of shameless incompetence and oblivious confidence, and its total earnestness ends up being unexpectedly charming. Get drunk, call some friends, and watch it. And keep an eye out for the scenes when non-CG birds show up in the background, just kind of hopping around, not hurting anybody or spitting acid or exploding or anything. It's safe to assume that, like everything and everyone else in this inadvertent masterpiece, they're there by accident.

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