Bird

Film

Drama

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<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>4</span>/5
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Time Out says

Eastwood's Bird is bravely the Bird of the jazz faithful, with few concessions. Most of the exaggerations and telescopings of place and time will offend only the discographical mentality. The treatment of narcotics, race, and racism is matter-of-fact, nor is the sense of period insisted upon as it was in The Cotton Club; above all, brave beyond the call of duty, the director trusts the music, tricky old bebop. Music properly dominates the biopic, explaining Chan's long-suffering love for Bird and Bird's whole outlook on the world. The way the narrative leaps back and forth in time parallels the neurotic speed of uptake in bebop itself. Whitaker looks as if he's really playing, indicates the protean nature of the genius, and grabs the part of a lifetime with both hands. Venora's Chan is a miracle. The progression from the Chan of the courtship days,, with her hip, sassy dancer's walk, to the set face and shoulders of the common-law wife, tells a touching story of betrayed dreams. At last American cinema has done black music proud. Unforgettable.
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Release details

UK release:

1988

Duration:

160 mins

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Average User Rating

3.8 / 5

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Marsellus

Watched this yesterday. Jazz was never my thing after years of being subjected to it by my step-father. However, I have to say I found the music in the film enjoyable - possibly because I began to respect Charlie Parker through learning about his life. From what I understand, this is a fairly accurate biopic in terms of history (maybe a few names have been changed here or there) but, moreover, it is accurate and faithfull to the music. You can really tell Eastwood has a lot of love and respect for the subject matter. Also, Whitaker was excellent in the title role. Why he is not as highly regarded as other African-American actors like Morgan Freeman or Denzel Washington is puzzling. I also liked how Eastwood avoided making race or politics a central theme of the film and chose simply to tell the story of a man and his music.

Marsellus

Watched this yesterday. Jazz was never my thing after years of being subjected to it by my step-father. However, I have to say I found the music in the film enjoyable - possibly because I began to respect Charlie Parker through learning about his life. From what I understand, this is a fairly accurate biopic in terms of history (maybe a few names have been changed here or there) but, moreover, it is accurate and faithfull to the music. You can really tell Eastwood has a lot of love and respect for the subject matter. Also, Whitaker was excellent in the title role. Why he is not as highly regarded as other African-American actors like Morgan Freeman or Denzel Washington is puzzling. I also liked how Eastwood avoided making race or politics a central theme of the film and chose simply to tell the story of a man and his music.