The Box

Deal Score0
Deal Score0
Director Richard Kelly has crafted yet another evocative, spectacular, maddening film guaranteed to provoke passionate love-it or hate-it responses. Though far more straightforward than his previous cult favorites, Donnie Darko or Southland Tales, The Box is crammed just as full of stunning visuals and ambiguous metaphysics. Norma and Arthur Lewis (Cameron Diaz of Charlie’s Angels and James Marsden of X-Men) find a plainly wrapped package on their doorstep one day. Inside is… More >>

The Box

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  1. This is one of the worst movies I’ve seen in a long time. The plot was very disjointed, and at times, unbelievable. But more then that, it was just flat out dull. I love sci-fi, and had no clue that this was a sci-fi flick going into the theater. Leaving the theater, I wanted my money back.

    This was a major bomb.
    Rating: 1 / 5

  2. i honesly was in the long run disapointed, yes some of it kept my attetnion some of it was a little suspnsful but going by the previews i didn’t relaize it was looking like the 1970s and allthe tists and truns reminde me of something M Night shamalon would doe like in the movie village the previews make it look like some kidn of crazy monster but you were surprised to see what it really was

    it was not what it hought and like 40 other people in th theaters most of them wer saying “not my style not what i hoped not what it hought, i didn’t relaize it was goign to be thsi way etc

    maybe one day on HBO or at some low price theater but not know $8

    again part kept mya ttention, it starte off slow then it kidn of picke up but near the end i and others i sat near , around were disapointed in it i’ve seen worse this year and “better” just like white out i was disapointed but the prviews make it look totally d9iffrent
    Rating: 2 / 5

  3. The movie has to be one of the worst movies i’ve seen this year. 2009 has been a great year for film but this movie is horrible. The plot was just not believable. Some guy shows up on your doorstep with a box and he tells you that if you push the button on the box you get a million dollars, the catch is that someone you don’t no will die. Are you serious? Most people would bust out laughing and then slam the door in this weirdo’s face. However, Cameron Diaz seems to have no problem inviting this strange man into her home. We later find out that this strange man is some type of alien that apparently works for the goverment. Once again, Are you serious? This movie is not only stupid but it’s very dull. The characters all just seem to be going through the motions. What really bothers me is that this is the type of movie Stephen King would have made into a masterpiece. It actually feels like it has been done before but i dont no. This movie was not the least bit interesting. I would not rent this one or watch it again for free. Everyone please avoid this one. It gets a big two thumbs down from me. Holla.
    Rating: 1 / 5

  4. Proverb Breakdown

    I walk into the theatre; nothing ventured, nothing gained.

    A fool and his money are soon parted.

    I had a date; One in the hand is worth two in the bush…I mean, misery loves company.

    The script and plot get weak, fast; The emperor has no clothes.

    Diaz walks with a limp (and her Southern twang is bad); The shoe is on the other foot.

    I understand the intentions: Be careful what you wish for.

    The writers screw it up with too much unrelated nonsense: Too many cooks spoil the pot.

    Diaz and Marsden aren’t happy with the offer they agreed to: Beggars can’t be choosers.

    You got me Hollywood! You put a vague trailor together with an interesting concept, and put it in a box. The problem: the box – both figuratively and literally – is completely empty. Aside from the guy with a hideous scarring – but easy access for brushing his molars – this movie is essentially like the old game show, “Press Your Luck.” When presented with the option, most people will push the button delivering riches, even though they know there is a Whammy lurking or someone else may suffer. It just would have been nice to have a coherent, somewhat unambiguous script – which is replete with mumbo jumbo about aliens, lightning, secret government cover-ups involving the NSA and the CIA, some unexplained nonsense about the realities of magic, secret water doorways to alternate dimensions, and more loose ends than in Buckwheat’s fro – that wasn’t completely and preposterously insufficient of relaying the intended message.

    Oh well, I guess it takes two to tango. Convenience and circumstance do no substitute for plot, nor do they serve as a resolution, but I get partial blame for paying to see this drivel. Maybe I should just pay my money without looking too deeply into things. Or, if Sarah Jessica Parker were involved: never look a gift horse in the mouth. Either way, the makers of this movie should have followed the classic, “Don’t bite off more than you can chew,” because this movie is more pretentious parable than adept allegory.

    Rating: 2 / 5

  5. The visuals are nice, the directing style is very artistic in an almost “I’m not ripping off Kubrick – I’m just copying a little” sort of way. It’s a fun thing to watch.

    The setting of the story involves scary man bringing a scary box to this couple’s door, which is locked. The next day he gives Norma a key to open it, and a crisp fresh 100 dollar bill, and tells her if she presses the button, someone somewhere she doesn’t know will die, and she’ll get a million dollars.

    He is nowhere near as charming as he is implied to be, and ultimately his character and the whole big “mystery” behind it which the main couple spend a huge portion of time trying to uncover is one big fat Red Herring that is completely explained at the end when the movie’s “Show, Don’t Tell” atmosphere is abandoned so Arlington Steward can become MISTER EXPOSITION! for TWO WHOLE, SEPARATE SCENES in describing just who he is and what/why he is.

    The story starts to unravel haphazardly, as it leads us on a cryptic mystery quest that genuinely interested me. That mystery then smashes into a wall of dogmatic Judeo-Christian Old Testament morality in a scene in the library which is so over the top and wildly confusing, it almost doesn’t fit into the movie.

    The initial mystery shows itself to be a Red Herring, and a whole new mystery opens up, which is unceremoniously ended with a hugely disappointing “MISTER EXPOSITION!” explanation that destroys any and all mystery and boils the entire events of the movie into a cycle of murder, Old Testament-style morality, and pointless human suffering that ultimately teaches us nothing beyond “Don’t kill, ever, even if it means you will suffer incredible hardships” What does that mean? As an amateur philosopher, it really irritated me with this.

    What essentially happens is that people are arbitrarily chosen for this button “test” which is so coyly called the “Human Resources EXPLOITATION Test”. People who press the button suffer what the main couple does. Those who don’t are essentially enslaved by the “employers” and made to carry out their dastardly deeds, somehow reminiscent of the Manson Family’s “Creepy Crawlies” game.

    These slaves are called “employees” and are made obvious by their nosebleeds whenever they carry out their employers’ deeds. The “employers” are apparently implied to be aliens.

    First, these aliens set up the couple for immense pain and suffering. One, they have the principal of a school Norma teaches at cancel a program that allows her to teach without paying money (you know it’s them because he gets the trademark nosebleed), so she’s out of a job and out of money. They also sabotage Arthur’s NASA astronaut test, losing his dream of going to the Moon and damning him to suffer his job with no chance of his desired advancement.

    So the “Vessel” formerly known as Arlington Steward gives Norma (Cameron Diaz) the box and all that junk. To their credit, they manage to resist the temptation with great spirit and courage. In fact, it’s only out of sheer stress and uncertainty ABOUT THE BOX that the button is pressed. So in fact, if they had just told her about it, and said she would make her choice to Mr Steward without having him waiting around, she probably wouldn’t have made the decision.

    Instead, she presses the button and minutes later as the deadline is reached, here comes the Vessel with the money. Then, he proceeds to harass her, along with other “employees” who seem to be simultaneously guiding them and harassing them, making them suffer horribly the potential guilt.

    Later the man who killed his wife at the moment Norma pressed the button was actually forced to do so—he says it was either his wife or his daughter.

    Later on, we get some MISTER EXPOSITION where Vessel explains that these “employers” are testing the whole human race, and the only people who will be spared extinction are those who did not press the button. That is that, apparently. They didn’t really explain any gray area in that Black or White morality. These slaves are then shown forcibly entering blocks of water for some reason, maybe to go on an alien planet and be spared.

    Later, that guy who was forced to murder his wife is then murdered for DARING to tell all of this to Arthur, and how his wife pressed the button as well. Then Arthur’s wife and son are abducted, and they wake up back in their house, where Vessel Steward waits, and their son Walter is struck deaf and blind.

    The Vessel then says that either they live with the money and their son Helen Keller-ized, or he kills Norma and Walter is returned to normal.

    “Ironically”, the very moment he (with her urging) decides to kill her is the same moment another wife presses the button.

    This incoherently implies that this is an endless cycle by which spouses will be forced to murder their spouses, or else have a family member of theirs suffer an incredible pain and nearly impossible life.

    Or they can choose not to press the button, and live as slaves before taken to Mars or something.
    Rating: 1 / 5

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