5 Reasons I Absolutely Love and Recommend 'Bird Box'
Two words that, when put together these days, can stir either unstoppable praise or sniveling, complaining, and disgust.
Love it or hate it, the Netflix original has taken the world by storm. But is it worth your time?
I watched Bird Box over winter break (I'm a teacher by day), and I'll say this: I didn't regret one second of that time. I know that there are plenty of critics who have called Bird Box boring, bland, overdone, and unoriginal. However, for the two hours I watched, I was sold on the brilliance of the story line. Check out my Top 5 reasons I adored this film and will be checking out the book. Then, tell me in the comments what side you are on: #probirdbox or #antibirdbox.
1. The beginning had me hooked with questions
In the first few minutes of the movie, so many questions arose. Who are the children? Why do they have to be quiet? Where are they going? And what in the living hell are they doing with a box of birds?
I was hooked from the first few minutes, the tension and suspense of the scene set well. The movie technically begins in medias res, with us trying to figure out how the heck Sandra's character ended up in this position on the river. I loved that the movie played with chronology to keep you guessing. I also loved the whole setup of one adult being in charge of two children alone. It added to the terror.
2. Sandra Bullock was a kick-ass protagonist
I'll go ahead and say it: I'm not Sandra Bullock's biggest fan.
I have never been crazy about the movies she's been in. I'm not sure what it is. But this movie changed my mind. She did an amazing job at playing a kick-ass woman who found the will to survive in an apocalyptic world.
I also really appreciated that Malorie wasn't painted as the typical woman. Pregnant at the very beginning of the story, she does not actually want to be a mother. The movie says a lot about mothering and the mothering instinct. It is her lack of a desire to be a mother and her somewhat cold nature towards the idea of children that allows the movie to unfold as it does.
I found her character to be realistic and easy to relate to. She is not the perfect hero in an apocalyptic world. She shows us that sometimes life puts you in a predicament and you have no choice but to rise to the challenge. I appreciated that.
3. It had the feel of A Quiet Place but with less plot holes
This may be an unpopular opinion, but I was not a fan of A Quiet Place. The premise was amazing, but I was just left with too many questions. Also, I felt there were way too many plot holes and issues with the story and details.
Bird Box certainly had that silent, tense feeling of A Quiet Place. The idea of living in a world without one of your sense is terrifying, and I liked putting myself in the characters' shoes and thinking about how hard life would be. However, Bird Box did a much better job at explaining all of the plot holes. Any time I thought of a specific question, the movie answered. I really felt like every detail went together, and the entire conflict made sense. Nothing felt out of the realm of possibility, which is something I look for in horror/thriller.
The story did a good job, in short, of helping me suspend disbelief along with the characters.
4. I love that the flashbacks answered so many questions
I liked that the movie chose to use so many flashbacks. I thought it was interesting to piece together Malorie's story through the flashbacks. They were perfectly spaced so the movie wasn't boring (despite what some critics are saying). I thought the flashbacks also helped take some of the edge of and give me a second to breathe...which was needed as the movie went on.
It also made Malorie feel more human. You understand exactly who she was and what she lost in this new world....and also what she gained.
5. The ending was well-planned
This will be spoiler-free, so feel free to read on even if you haven't yet watched.
I thought the ending of the movie made complete sense and gave a satisfying ending to this dark, twisted tale. I hadn't really thought about the ending and didn't expect what happened.
Some critics argue the ending was weak, but I disagree. If you haven't seen the movie, be sure to check it out on Netflix and then let me know what you thought in the comments.
L.A. Detwiler is a thriller author with Avon Books, a division of HarperCollins UK. Her debut novel, The Widow Next Door, is available wherever books are sold. To learn more about her, visit her on Facebook.
USA TODAY Bestselling Thriller author with Avon Books (HarperCollins), The Widow Next Door