Bird Box

Bird Box is a 2018 American post-apocalyptic horror thriller film, directed by Susanne Bier from a screenplay written by Eric Heisserer, and based on the 2014 novel of the same name by Josh Malerman. The film follows a woman, played by Sandra Bullock, as she tries to protect herself and two children from malevolent supernatural entities that make people who look at them go insane and commit suicide. Bird Box had its world premiere at the AFI Fest on November 12, 2018, and began a limited release on December 14, before streaming worldwide on Netflix on December 21, 2018.

What is this creature? What is the horror that plagues the world and makes people go insane and want to hurt & kill themselves? I have no idea. As unexplained mass suicides originating in Russia quickly spreading across Europe, it reaches the US as a pregnant Malorie is in the hospital for a quick check up with her sister Jessica. They leave hastily as a women, who is the first in the film to be infected (or the first one we see) starts banging her head forcefully against a glass wall. They leave in their car but Jessica is infected when she sees something and rams their car creating an accident. She then looks sad and walks into a speeding truck that kills her. Malorie is helped by a couple of people who bring her into a near house. A small group of survivors gather in this house as havoc descends all around them.

One of the survivors, Charlie who seems to have somewhat comprehensive knowledge of what could be happening, theorizes that an otherworldly entity has invaded Earth, taking the form of its victims’ worst fears and driving them insane before causing them to commit suicide. This is not proven but they board all the windows and settle in. Later, Greg, the home owner, volunteers to tie himself to a chair while monitoring the surveillance cameras to find the issue of the entity but kills himself by rocking his chair violently and slamming his head into a hearthstone after seeing it. The group takes in Olympia who was with another group and finds her way to them, blindfolded, by knocking on doors. She too is pregnant and expecting soon, and bondis with Malorie. most of the group go to a supermarket close by to restock. Malorie finds pet birds and decides to take them along with their supplies. The group attempts to help a coworker of Charlie who is locked outside the supermarket begging for help, and whom Charlie describes as “a little crazy.”

As they contemplate the risks of opening the door, the birds that Malorie was saving go into a hysterical fury. The group is attacked by the infected coworker, who was not killed by the entity but is instead used to infect others. Charlie sacrifices himself to save the others, who are able to make it back safely to the house. Two of the group, leave in the car without telling the others. Olympia lets in a stranger named Gary who says he was with another group but it turns out he is ary starts to take out various drawings of the entity and seems to undergo a trance, indicating that he could have already been partially overtaken by the entity when he arrived. He opens the garage door to kill Douglas. He peeks outside and is completely taken over; he then knocks out Tom and proceeds to remove all the coverings from all the windows. Despite Malorie’s warnings, Olympia fails to look away from the windows and jumps out of the window. Gary forces Cheryl to look, and Cheryl grabs a pair of scissors and stabs herself in the neck.

Douglas blindly attempts to kill Gary with a shotgun but fails, which results in Douglas’s death. While Malorie tries to protect the newborn babies (Malorie’s boy and Olympia’s girl), Tom recovers consciousness in time to overpower and kill Gary. Five years go on and Tom & Malorie are living together and raising the kids, who Malorie has named Boy & Girl. They receive a transmission from Rick, a survivor stating that they are well and safe at a community hidden in the forest. The four decide to go to the community, but are ambushed by a group of infected survivors along the way. Without hesitation, Tom runs out to distract the group while Malorie and the children attempt to make an escape. When the group notices Malorie and the children escaping, Tom decides to open his eyes and shoot them dead. He is overtaken by the entity, but with his will, he manages to shoot the last member of the group before shooting himself.

Malorie, the children, and their pet birds, which are contained in a box to protect against the entity, make their way blindfolded down the river on a boat. They fight off an infected survivor, and survive raging rapids. The boat flips but they find each other on land only to get separated when Malorie accidentally slides down a hill. The entity attempts to convince Boy and Girl to remove their blindfolds using Malorie’s voice. Malorie is able to tell them to fight the urge. Once they are all together again, they are chased by the entity, which was implied by the camera movement and wind. The three eventually reach the community, a former school for the blind. Malorie releases the pet birds from the box to the other birds up on the ceiling and finally gives the children names: Tom and Olympia.

Unconvincing horror and the menace kinda reminds me of M. Night Shyamalan’s The Happening. It isn’t boring though and some good acting by Bullock, Malkovich and co will let you stay focused. I give it a 7 outta 10!

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