Robert Lockaby Staff Writer
On Dec. 14, 2018, Netflix released the original film “Bird Box” in the United States, which is an adaptation of a Josh Malerman novel of the same name. The movie stars Sandra Bullock as Malorie Rose, who is guiding two children only known as Boy and Girl down a river. They are all blindfolded in order to avoid creatures that make anyone that sees them commit suicide and humans that force others to look at the creatures. The film transitions between flashbacks that portray how the main characters got into their situation and their journey to a safe house down the river.
Overall, “Bird Box” is a good movie for anyone to enjoy. However, its promotion through a meme that Netflix itself helped distribute and the figures they circulated on how many people have viewed it should not have been the cause for its attention. Just like any movie, it is not for everyone, due to some of the choices that were made in the creation of the film. For example, in one scene they drive to the store on a clear road, which if realistically portrayed, should have been crowded with cars. Also, the fact that some of the people were not affected by the creatures is questionable, as well. However, the acting power behind the film and the suspenseful scenes that director Susanne Bier creates still make it enjoyable.
Bullock carries the film with her performance, as she loses the people close to her and become more of a strict, paranoid person as the film continues. She creates a likeable protagonist for the audience to root for, as she works to get the kids and herself to safety. Director Bier creates a sense of dread and doom, as each scene leaves possibilities that things might not turn out the way they should, which helps maintain the audience’s attention. The score also helps, creating tones of sadness and dread to the story. Its success partially stems from the fact that it was created by an Academy Award winning duo, Atticus Ross and Trent Reznor, of Nine Inch Nails. They have helped in the creation of other films, such as “The Social Network” and “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.”
In the end, the film is just a victim to terrible promotion from Netflix, who thought it was a good idea to team up with Twitch streamers to start the “Bird Box” challenge. This sparked controversy from the public, people imitated it. Netflix capitalized on the viral nature of the Internet and how much attention stems from controversy, putting the film in a bad light, which is sad. On its own, the film is not a huge landmark for the industry but is a film that can be enjoyed by anyone who wants a good film to watch. It was just marketed awfully for a film that’s sole purpose is to entertain an audience.