Synopsis: Saxophone player Charlie Parker comes to New York in 1940. He is quickly noticed for his remarkable way of playing. He becomes a drug addict but his loving wife Chan tries to help him.
Director(s): Clint Eastwood
Production: Warner Home Video
  Won 1 Oscar. Another 8 wins & 9 nominations.
Rotten Tomatoes:
161 min

Go, Bird!

You're awake.

I'm glad.

Halfway through the last set,

guess who dropped in on me?

My ulcers.

I gave them some codeine

and they wouldn't go away.

What else happened?

The strings, they went into

the intro to "Easy to Love"...

...and I started playing...

... "If I Should Lose You."

Didn't fit.

Not even when I tried to make it fit.

It wouldn't fit.

Wouldn't nobody have noticed

except for maybe...

...Dizzy Gillespie...

...but Dizzy Gillespie is on the road

somewhere, far as I know.

But he would have chided me.

Is that all?


I'm grateful

that you didn't bolt the door.

I expected

that I was going to have to... my way back in here.

Did you get my note?

I left it on the refrigerator.

What else happened?

What else?

About what you'd expect.


...he got one of the camera girls... take a picture of me... the midst of my disorientation.

Something to show the union.

I said:

"You don't give me

that negative back...

...I don't work here no more."

So I don't work there no more.

To hell with them.

I'm hungry.

Are you?


We have decided to humor him...

...this evening.

If he says that he's having pain

from his ulcers...

...never mind

that we don't believe it!

I believe it.

Work that psychology on him.

He's just an overgrown,

goddamn adolescent anyway.

Dangerous when contradicted...

...but an adolescent.

God, you're weird.

God, I'm weird?

Is that what they say in Westchester?

I hear that Steinberg...

...he lives in Westchester.

What do you mean,

"To hell with them?"

Why don't you stick up for your own

people? Stick up for somebody!

This is getting ugly again.

Maybe I should have bolted the door.

Don't let me mess up your plans.

I'll bolt the door.

I got him.

I got him.


- I said I got him!

- Don't touch him!

What you hitting me for like that?

What do you think I had on my mind?



I'm sorry.

We just put one child in the grave.

Hey, don't.

What did you think I would do?

Forgive me.

I was humoring you.

I'm sorry.

It's okay. It's okay.

- Guess what I did yesterday.

- What?

I went to the lawyers...

...and I made a will.

And I left everything to you.

There's no harm in

getting your affairs in order.

I don't want to hear about

that will, man.

I can't do anything right anymore.

Do we have any Gelusil?

We sure do. Got a brand-new

50-gallon drum in the bathroom.

Come, fill the cup

And in the fire of spring

Your winter garment

of repentance fling

The bird of time

Has but a little way to flutter

And bird is on the wing.

That was stupid.

Now I'll have to call an ambulance.

Case number 1540:

Patient admitted to psychiatric

at request of wife...

...following suicide attempt

by ingestion of iodine.

5 a.m., September 1, 1954.

Patient has a past history of,

quote, "nervous breakdown," unquote...

...for which he was hospitalized

in California for eight months.

The wife says this attempt

was related to depression...

...over the death of their daughter...

...and also by reverses in, quote,

"his career," end of quote.

Apparently he's a musician.

- Where's he been put?

- PQ-3, semi-agitative.

- What will you recommend?

- His wife's coming in this afternoon.

What do you expect me to recommend?

Charlie Parker.

Let me go! Get off me!

Let me go!

Excuse me.

Too early, and you know it.

Did you see that?

I asked that...

...misguided, officious young woman...

...if she would administer

my paraldehyde...

...and she demurred.


I am not a laboratory animal.

I am in pain here.

Can't she see that?

Tell your troubles to somebody else.

Why? You're perfect.

Orderly! Orderly!

All right, calm down!

Come on. Come on.

Let him down.

Let him go, let him go.

What is wrong with you people?

Can't you see I'm in pain here?

When all else fails,

what he'll do is provoke a fight.

If he can 't afford to get drunk,

the substitute is pain.

It takes his mind off things

for a while.

There was a time he could

do that with conversation...

...but not since

the ulcers started bleeding.

Are you employed?

No. No, he's a good provider.

I dance... nightclubs

once in a great while.

Hardly at all these days.

I have two children at home.

What I'm getting at

is the financial problem.

He needs medical treatment.

Not psychological.

Why did you call us then?

Charles Christopher Parker, Jr.

August 29, 1920.

You were an easy delivery.

Turn that light on for me.

Now meet somebody.

That's you, my man.

Dead from it. Older than you'll be,

because you started earlier.

So I give you 18 years,

20 on the outside.

I'm worse than a prophet.

I don't just have faith.

I've seen it.

You've heard from my mother.

You believe me or not?

Why shouldn't I believe you?

Are you going to

do something about it?

What do you expect me to do about it?

What do you expect me to do about it?

Nothing, just sign it.

I haven't done anything

remotely like this in my life.


Yeah, but I got them all.

- The hell you do.

- The hell I don't.

I got a stack of 78s this high.

This is death's door?

Half the city thinks you're crimped

and you're signing autographs.

You didn't think so, little birdy.

Every time I turn around,

you're supposed to be gone.

You'll bury us all

and take our women with you.

So, what do you got there?

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Joel Oliansky

Joel Oliansky (October 11, 1935 – July 29, 2002) was an Emmy-winning screenwriter and director known for Bird, the 1988 biographic film about Charlie Parker, as well as writing and directing episodes of TV series including The Law, and Kojak. more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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