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The Box Hates You

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The Box has a lot of the trappings of a great movie.  It stars Cameron Diaz, who starred in Being John Malkovich.  And the story suggests another interesting perspective of a fascinating idea.  (A couple is faced with the decision of whether or not to press a button that'll cause the death of a complete stranger and which will earn them $1,000,000.)  It also does a convincing depiction of America in the 1970's.

So we watched this potentially wonderful movie last night.  It started off great.  The way it was set in the 1970's, it reminded me of Ang Lee's The Ice Storm.  That's another favorite movie of mine.  Things were looking up.  Good pedigree, interesting ideas, good production...

But then things turn weird and just keep turning weirder in a bad way.

Maybe Richard Kelly was keeping on with what he thought was a successful tactic from Donnie Darko, but it doesn't work in The Box.

SPOILERS AT THIS ONE PARAGRAPH:

After the movie ended, I replayed a few scenes to see if I missed anything.  Was there any explanation for why the previous father accosted the current father at gunpoint?  Was free will an element in this movie?  (How did the employer force the father to shoot his wife each time the button was pressed by the next couple if the employer didn't know what would happen?)  There were many WTF moments in this movie, and they were of both the "that's out of left field" and "that contradicts what we just saw" varieties.

Be warned. Go into this movie expecting less Being John Malkovich and more Donnie Darko.  Otherwise you may be left with the same unsatisfied feeling with which I walked away.  No, it was worse than that.  That movie hated me.  It started off promising so much, and not only didn't deliver, it just jerked me around, as it didn't know what to do with the ideas.

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tpederson
Mar. 3rd, 2010 12:27 am (UTC)
OK, will add to my Q