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Bird Box: a compelling thriller about human nature

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Bird Box: a compelling thriller about human nature

Bird Box captivated viewers with a thrilling pot and a chilling theme.

Bird Box captivated viewers with a thrilling pot and a chilling theme.

Photo / Christian Quinones

Bird Box captivated viewers with a thrilling pot and a chilling theme.

Photo / Christian Quinones

Photo / Christian Quinones

Bird Box captivated viewers with a thrilling pot and a chilling theme.

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As Christmas morning was upon us, the wrapping paper strewn across the floor, we opened our new phones or TVs to browse Netflix. Instantly, two words appeared on the bright screens: Bird Box.

The new film, directed by Susanne Bier and starring Sandra Bullock as Malorie, Trevante Rhodes as Tom, Julian Edwards as Boy, and Vivien Lyra Blair as Girl, became the latest cultural phenomenon, capturing the attention of viewers everywhere. Its gripping and suspenseful post-apocalyptic plot, and its theme have been particularly alluring.

Personally, my favorite movie genre is suspense, as the feeling of being on your seat and the natural curiosity of what’s going to happen next is breathtaking. Given that social media has been buzzing with reviews praising the film’s suspense, Bird Box had to be something that was on my agenda to watch.

It wasn’t until my second viewing that I was able to relax a bit and start to dig in to the film’s themes: the idea that human nature is our greatest enemy.

Throughout life it may seem like people are out to get us and hold us back but often, the only explanation is ourselves. Throughout Bird Box, human nature remains a struggle to overcome, from our inherent curiosity (the film opened on Malorie strongly discouraging the two children in her care, “boy” and “girl,” to even think about removing their blindfold) to our selfishness when the going gets rough. Often, we don’t take responsibility for our failures but readily claim our success.

This specific message is important because it calls to mind the notion that only we control our own success. At times, Malorie is close to death but tells the kids in her charge (who came in her care in the midst of the confusion surrounding the apocalyptic event) to move on if anything were to happen to her; at this point, life was about survival.

Bullock, known for her roles in the films Ocean’s Eight, The Blind Side, Gravity, and The Proposal, was a key piece of the Netflix film’s success. She elevated the movie with her precise acting and steady hand throughout and set a somber, yet suspenseful tone. This was Bullock’s first time acting in a Netflix original, and her participation heightened Bird Box to levels typically only seen in theatrical films.

Bird Box left me on the edge of my seat with my popcorn in one hand and my soda in the other, frequently wondering what other directions Bier could take it.  If you’re looking for something to tune in to on on a chilly winter’s evening, I highly encourage you to check out Bird Box. Start that two hour journey, because the film is worth all the hype.

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Bird Box: a compelling thriller about human nature