The Box — Movie Review

I was able to have a month free subscription of Netfix from Gather to review Extraordinary Measures. One of the movies that I wanted to see was The Box.

The Box is based on a short story entitled “Button, Button” by Richard Matheson. The story takes place in 1976.  Norma (Cameron Diaz) and Arthur (James Marsden) Lewis, a financially strapped couple, wake to find a package on the doorstep. Inside is a locked wooden box with a button and a note that reads: “Mr. Steward will call upon you at 5:00 pm”. Promptly at five, Steward (Frank Langella), an elderly man with a severe facial burn, visits. He tells Norma that if the box’s button is pushed, he will give her one million dollars, but someone they do not know will die. As the couple face issues at work, the idea of “free money” becomes more lucrative. Norma impusively does push the button…..and we see the aftermath.

I will NOT tell you the rest of the plot, as I don’t want to ruin it for those that do actually sit through the movie. I will say that it reminded me of a Twilight Zone or Ray Bradbury episode….and come to find out, the short story was made in to a Twilight Zone episode in the 80’s. This movie also reminded me a little bit of the plot of SAW (no, there is no blood and guts), as it’s a story about decisions and choosing between 2 bad options.

The Box is rated PG13, for some violence and language. The movie runs 115 minutes. I will say that I did figure out the movie and what was going on part way through….and who was behind the box that was delivered to the Lewis family. I will not ruin it for you (as I did to the people I watched Sixth Sense with…I blurted out about 1/4 way through the movie that the move was stupid and why were we watching a dead guy talk to the kid…oops….no one else realized Bruce Willis was dead).

My take on The Box is, if you need something to rent and want to put some time in to THINKING about a movie, then this is for you. If you just want mindless entertainment, then skip it. I was disappointed in the ending of the movie….it had too much of a  “we can make a sequel” feel to it. The movie is really not scary, creepy, or much of a thriller, in my opinion. Christopher only watched part of the movie, then went to bed. I am not going to let Angela watch it, though she is 13….she won’t like it. It’s not her kind of movie.

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