The Brattle had a late-night showing of the most recent bad-movie cult hit Birdemic, and I certainly couldn’t miss the opportunity after seeing the trailer (which you should watch too, trust me). A romantic thriller from writer/director James Nguyen, the film explores the impact of widespread eagle attacks on software salesman Rod (Alan Bagh) and up-and-coming model Nathalie (Whitney Moore), whose romance has just begun to blossom.
Supposedly this phenomenon is the result of environmental degradation caused by humans, and the birds are out for revenge. Rod and Nathalie do their best to fend off the tide of slow-moving, explosion-causing fowl with an array of weapons and a large van, picking up two useless children along the way. Before we get to all that though, we are treated to a large amount of Rod and Nathalie’s work-related endeavors and tepid early dates.
As a movie in itself, it’s just awful. The dialogue is laughably awkward and the acting is absolutely atrocious. The script is poorly structured, thematically very blunt, and often nonsensical. The effects are the lowest of the low, amounting to bird attackers that resemble animated .gif’s from 1997 and weirdly tiny explosions popping up out of nowhere. The score is repetitive, there’s a host of randomly-appearing characters who serve little purpose to the story, the visual quality and camera work are noticeably sub-par; there’s quite a long list of negative elements to the film.
Of course, it’s all those things and more that make Birdemic an AWESOME film-going experience. Even though it takes at least half of the movie for any birds to even appear, the stilted acting and poorly-written conversations are certainly enough to keep me laughing before then. The addition of horribly CG-ed birds flapping their way around real-life objects just heightened an already-entertaining movie. There’s something terribly endearing about the whole affair, from Rod’s delayed reactions, to extended shots of people driving, to uncoordinated camera movements, to completely un-erotic sex scenes, to the most unrealistic forest fire I’ve ever seen.
It may be one of the worst movies ever made, but doggonit if I didn’t enjoy the hell out of it. Plus it’s got an environmentalist message, so that’s good. And an anti-bird message. Screw those guys, you know? Anyway, I saw this with a very enthusiastic crowd, which definitely increases the fun, so I’d recommend you try to do the same!
As a movie: 1.5/5
As entertainment: 4.5/5