Tuesday, March 30, 2010

The Box

In the beginning, The Box plays like an episode of The Twilight Zone and effectively engages the viewer. Then it becomes completely preposterous and goes on way longer than in should. The film is about a married couple with a son living in late 70s Richmond, Virginia. Norma (the horrible Cameron Diaz, this time with an atrocious southern accent) is a teacher at her sons school and is informed that discounted tuition will no longer be given. Her husband Arthur (James Marsden) is a NASA employee who finds out he failed the astronaut psych test. These instances of bad news coincide with the visit of a disfigured visitor (the wonderful Frank Langella) with a strange gift and an even stranger proposition: If the couple presses the red button on the box he has given them, they will receive one million dollars, while someone they don't know will be killed. It is up to this point that the film is engaging. After this, as it gets into conspiracies and the ridiculousness of the story keeps getting worse, all is lost and by the ending.