6/10 Part “A Quiet Place”, part “The Happening” and part “The Mist”, this movie received tons of hype and I had several requests to review it. Anytime a movie is greatly hyped, I am automatically cautious as I feel that people tend to overhype films that don’t deserve it. After having watched this, I can understand some of the hype, but this movie definitely falls short and the more you think about it, the more problems it has. There are some really solid elements to this movie and for the first hour and 40 mins out of the two hour running time, I was pleasantly surprised. It is really in the last 20 minutes that this movie completely falls apart. It starts with some characters surviving a water event even though two of the three characters wouldn’t know how to swim. Then we get a cheesy, loving speech that feels really over the top and a minor character from the beginning being reunited with the remaining survivors which was a huge coincidence and seemed extremely unlikely. So the ending of this movie is easily the biggest problem. Up until then we have a great performance by Sandra Bullock and overall solid performances around. There are some genuinely intense and surprising moments that were fun to watch unfold. I also liked that they didn’t show the creatures which adds more mystery to the movie. Having two different time periods for the narrative and jumping back and forth between them was effective and worked well. The post-apocalyptic setting felt real and authentic and a lot of the suicides that take place are well done visually. Despite there being a bit to like, the movie has some minor problems in the first half that although not as egregious as the last 20 minutes, are still worth noting. Characters drive in a car that they can’t see out of and although they use GPS, the roads would be so full of wrecked vehicles that they wouldn’t have had as easy of a time getting to the grocery store as they did. The fact that the grocery store is also completely well stocked and untouched seems very unrealistic. One character dies for no reason and could have easily survived (another thing this movie has in common with a main character from “A Quiet Place”) and even though one character has seen the creature, his eyes are totally normal and he is able to play off being a normal person, which is very inconsistent since no one else in the movie can do this. You either kill yourself if you are normal or if you are crazy, your eyes are visibly changed and you are even more of a psycho than before. This one character not following either of those rules really feels like cheating. So even though the tone, atmosphere, acting, intensity and pacing work really well and make for an entertaining watch that I would still overall recommend, some inconsistencies, dumb character decisions and falling apart in the last 20 minutes, prevent “Bird Box” from being on the same quality level as the superior “The Mist” and “A Quiet Place”. Feel free to watch, but I would recommend either of those other two films instead or “Arrival”, which hails from Eric Heisserer, whom wrote this movie.
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