June 29, 2010
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Director: Richard Kelly
Writers: Richard Kelly
Based on the Short Story by: Richard Matheson
Producers: Richard Kelly/Dan Lin/Sean McKittrick
Starring: Cameron Diaz/James Marsden/Frank Langella
BBFC Certification: 12
Duration: 115 minutes
A mysterious stranger delivers a message that the box promises to bestow upon its owner $1 million with the press of a button. But, pressing this button will simultaneously cause the death of another human being somewhere in the world… Someone they don’t know. With just 24 hours to have the box in their possession, Norma and Arthur find themselves in the crosshairs of a startling moral dilemma and must face the true nature of their humanity.
Could you end a stranger’s life to change your own?
The Box stars Cameron Diaz and James Marsden, both of them are good actors but there’s one question that’s raised all the way through this movie: What the heck are they doing wasting their talent on this movie? The story starts off brilliantly and it keeps you intrigued, right up until she presses the button and then it starts to spin out of control. The characters weren’t really interesting in the slightest except for Norma, played by Cameron Diaz and Mr. Steward, played by Frank Langella. The acting was decent, there’s definitely been much worse out there but there have been better efforts from the actors in their previous movies. The script was quite bad and the direction was close to awful but the worst thing about this movie was, without a doubt, the writing (although the CGI comes rather close as being the worst thing about the movie). This had the potential to be something good but that potential was unfortunately not used.
This is one of those rare movies that lures you into thinking it’s going to be great until something happens that makes the movie bad and then the bad turns worse and so on. The Box does this. The beginning of the movie starts off promising, Norma and Arthur are offered a million dollars if they press a button but if they do, someone who they don’t know somewhere in the world dies, pretty gripping stuff…until she presses the button. When she presses the button, not only someone dies, the story in the movie also dies and spins out of control. Nothing made sense whatsoever, the story had no structure. It just felt like after she pressed the button, the writers made up the story as they went along without planning it. They tried to make the movie clever, original and different but managed to go the opposite way to this. Cameron Diaz, James Marsden and Frank Langella all had done good jobs as their characters but it’s a shame their talent is wasted in this nonsensical movie. If you like mystery movies then you may like this but beware, you’ll ever find it confusing or you’ll find the story misleading you, trying to make you think it’s clever. Also, I must warn you that the movie is completely different to the trailer!
Good performances from Cameron Diaz, James Marsden and Frank Langella and the movie felt like it was from the 80s (in a good way) but other than that, not worth the watch. Catch it on television!