[image-1]The Box is based on a Twilight Zone episode entitled Button, Button, about a couple who is presented a choice: push a button in the box and get a large sum of money but someone they dont know will die. In the modern update, the couple is played by James Marsden and Cameron Diaz and the man with the million-dollar offer is an eerie Frank Langella. They decide to press the button (duh) and get their big payment (a million dollars, which will make a huge difference for the financially stretched couple), but the results of this decision (and their bizarre reason for making it) will have far-reaching and unintended consequences.
The concept sounds good, and the movie starts off dramatically, but The Box takes a hard right turn about halfway through, and turns into more of a thriller with Marsden's character trying to find the reltionship between the box and Langella. When we figure out the connection, it comes across as strange and a little bit silly. Frank Langella is quite good here, as is Marsden, but Cameron Diaz is just plain awful, with a terrible accent and some really bad over-acting. As Rabid Nick said in his review, people will either love or hate this movie, and despite my hopes of being in the first category, I was in the latter and ready for the movie to end all through the second half.
There are no special features on the DVD version , but the Blue-Ray has a few minor special features, including a commentary track by and 15-minute interview with director Richard Kelly, during which he shares his experiences making The Box. It was interesting, and I enjoyed seeing the director had a ton of passion for the project. The final feature for the Blu-ray was a look into the special effects, which was similar to any other special feature you see on a Blu-ray or DVD. The featurette goes into how they made the film feel like a '70s movie, and of course, how they made Langellas character look so horrible. It kept my interest throughout the 20 minutes, which is more than I can say for the movie.
Overall, The Box is a great idea that feels exactly like what it is a short whose concept was stretched into an overlong feature-length movie. If youre a fan of The Box, or of The Twilight Zone, I would say this is worth a solid rent on Blu-ray. If not, skip it, as the movie is middling and the special features are almost non-existent.