Canyon Echoes

Bird Box Review

thanks for Wherever I Look for providing a title card

thanks for Wherever I Look for providing a title card

Evan Tucker

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Movies have done sensory deprivation before. The movie Hush is fine, with a great concept. Not being able to hear in a horror movie is really cool, but it didn’t use it’s concept well enough. Years later, a Quiet Place came out. It used the idea of not being able to make a loud noise in stressful situations very well. The characters made sense, and it was clever with how they took situations. Then Bird Box was released to Netflix and they said “I don’t care just make the characters not see or something. We’ll make a challenge with the concept and call it a day.”

I knew that Bird Box, from the moment I saw the trailer, was going to be a stupid movie. While I thought the movie was enjoyable, there’s so much that brings to the reason I wouldn’t want to see it again.

There will be slight spoilers in this movie (but it doesn’t matter because the first scene in this movie spoils almost all of it).

Characters

A common critique in the world of critics, but some of the characters in this movie ARE REALLY BAD. The old cranky guy doesn’t react to his wife dying other than painfully bad acting. Olympia (no, her name is not Olivia movie fans) is such a pushover, I’m surprised she survived long enough to give birth and give monologues about her stupid Buzzfeed articles. Felix and Lucy were only there to have that one scene and make the movie rated R, and to run away like a jerk. Finally, Gary (while being probably my favorite character) brings into possibly the worst part about this movie, the established rules.

Kids in many pieces of media is a difficult thing to get right. You have examples like Telltales “The Walking Dead”, or John Krasinski’s “A Quiet Place”, where the kids understand the danger they’re in and help out with others in supportive roles, acting like less-wise adults, therefore raising the stakes that their lives bring. Then there’s Bird Box where the kids just scream the name of the main character and disobey the rules of their guardian. The writers tried to make them good, I can tell they tried, but when the only reason their characters exist is to make the viewers say “Oh no! Don’t kill the kids they have cute cheeks!” then you’ve failed on making a captivating character.

Some of the people in this movie are very well thought out and can really add to the story, but unfortunately, they weren’t used to their full potential. Charlie the cashier is studying Apocalypse in religions for a book he’s writing, and he has the keys to the grocery store. Yet he sacrifices himself and then he’s never talked about again. Cheryl, the “cool grandma” that still remains calm and wise during the apocalypse, has only a few lines of dialogue before she dies. Lastly, there’s Greg, the owner of the house, that dies for a basically pointless reason in the first couple of scenes.

Rules

In every good horror movie, it’s great to establish clear rules so the viewers never feel confused or cheated. Bird Box doesn’t have rules, and it turns scary scenes into “What?” “How does that work?” or “Wait, can you rewind that?” The limitations of the monster start out simple: If you look at it, you go insane and die. Then it becomes “they can’t go into cars or houses, and they can’t physically hurt you, so then we can make a safe place for the humans!” Then it transforms into “If insane people look at it, then they become sane, but then they become weird monster cultists and try to get others to look at the beasts.” Soon, birds went into the mix and now they can sense when the monsters are coming. Then the writers said, “Oh, well if you draw what you think the monster looks like, then look at it, I think it’s reasonable that you become a cultist.” At the final scene, the rules became “Okay, so if you’re close to the monster, it should telepathically talk to you and tempt you to look at it. Believe me, it makes the last scene feel intense or something.”

Another confusing thing about this movie is the interpretation of the monster. Some scenes, it’s depicted as a small windy cyclone, a religious demon, a giant screaming face, and in others a… veiny baby? The movie is confusing itself here. All of the confusing rules eventually led the movie into the unsatisfying role the zombie-cultists being the main antagonists, which I feel wasn’t a very strong shift in plot.

Social Media

If there is one defining reason why this movie so popular, it would have to be the #Birdboxchallenge. No one knows the one silhouetted being who typed the tweet in the cold, winter winds. Theories surround the possibility of bots, promotion artists, or the first possible fan of Bird Box. #Birdboxchallenge is the one giant reason that you’re reading my review today. It has gained so much popularity that on the first week of the movie’s premiere, Birdbox was one of the only things on the news. It’s lead to “Funny XD videos, “popularity gain, and deaths. doing various activities with blindfolds on will surely lead to someone getting hurt; why wouldn’t it? Thanks to this one hashtag, thousands of people are wanting a BIRDBOX 2. WHO NEEDS BIRDBOX 2? WHO THOUGHT OF THIS?

image from Daily Hive

Conclusion

It may seem like I think this is the worst movie of all time, but it’s not. The premise had potential, I’ll give it that. The sets in this movie looked really good, and I liked how the house felt all fancy and expensive in the beginning and felt like old ruins toward the end. The river scenes, while being scarce I mostly liked. Some actors were great and made me really attach to there characters (RIP Charlie.) But most of all, it made me not lose attention for the entire movie, and that makes me glad.

If you enjoyed Venom, but want a more thrilling experience, give Bird Box a try. It’s a great movie to watch on a sleepy weekend.

 

 

… I need to stop typing bird.

About the Writer
Evan Tucker, Reporter

Evan is a writer at canyon echoes. He's a real cool cat. He likes such entertainment like Over the Garden Wall, Kirby (not the anime) and good beats. Also...

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