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PHOTOGRAPHY

DEAD BIRDS

DVD Review by David Blackwell

DETAILS: 91 minutes, two audio commentaries, Making Dead Birds featurette, deleted scenes, original theatrical trailer, previews

STUDIO: SONY PICTURES

RELEASE DATE: 3-15-2005

ANALYSIS: DEAD BIRDS is a deathly boring horror movie. Nothing really happens and it becomes rather pointless when the movie tries to come alive in the last 30 to 40 minutes. The script drags along as nothing really happens. I just didn't connect with any of the characters. They were just one dimensional characters that never really come alive. The music is on almost constantly and it made them feel like I was more in an industrial factory or an underground tunnel system in a big city. It didn't bring any suspense and didn't have any beats to it. Lastly, it didn't make me feel like I was in some creepy house in 1863 Alabama. Worse yet, the actors mumble their lines sometimes. On the top of that, no tit shot from the lone female in the gang of bank robbers (The rule of thumb is that bad movies do have something to make it worthwhile even if you don't like the movie). I have respect for the people who made DEAD BIRDS and I'm fine that they didn't want nudity in it, but it would have helped keep me entertained for one moment of a very dreadfully boring movie known as DEAD BIRDS.

DEAD BIRDS is the story of a gang of bank robbers who hole up in a deserted (and creepy) house in Alabama in 1863. The house has it's own terrible secrets that may cost the lives of the gang. The movie all depends on atmosphere and it just wasn't working for me as a viewer despite a few moments that did make me jump.

VIDEO/AUDIO: DEAD BIRDS is presented in 1.85:1 Anamorphic Widescreen. Image detail is a little soft, but blacks look murky. Colors are just OK.

You can listen to DEAD BIRDS in English 5.1 Dolby Digital or French 2.0 with the option of English, French, Spanish, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, or Thai subtitles. The deleted scenes, the Making of featurette, and the commentaries have the option of Japanese subtitles.

Dialogue can be heard clearly (even though some of the cast do mumble their lines). Music and Sounds are the most active element on the 5.1 track.

SPECIAL FEATURES: The extras are more interesting than the movie. MAKING DEAD BIRDS is about 27 minutes long. It has some interesting details about making the movie. Lots of Behind-The-Scenes footage. They used Prison Inmates as part of the crew and they used the town seen in Tim Burton's Big Fish. This isn't a bad featurette, but it could have lost the footage of them drinking at bars and don't get me started on the marbles and the bagpipes. Deleted scenes are included, but only of them is of real interest to me. The theatrical trailer for the movie is included on the DVD in addition to previews for THE GRUDGE, ANACONDAS, RESIDENT EVIL: APOCALYPSE, and WAKING DEATH. The thing that irritates me is that the audio commentaries are hidden in the Audio set-up menu. One commentary for the movie is with director Alex Turner and the other commentary is a with the cast and crew. Both tracks are interesting to listen to and provide many details about the production. Alex Turner does cover many of the same things in both tracks. Producers were disappointed that Nikki Aycox wouldn't get naked.

FINAL ANALYSIS: Even though DEAD BIRDS didn't interest me at all, I would be interested in the next movie that Alex Turner directs. The DVD has great extras, but the movie bored me.

this DVD Review is (c)3-9-2005 David Blackwell and cannot be reprinted without permission. Send all comments to lord_pragmagtic@hotmail.com and look for additional content at http://www.livejournal.com/users/enterlinemedia