movie reviews
Bird Box Barcelona

Bird Box Barcelona

The Bird Box spin-off is unexpectedly entertaining, but not much more than that.

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I wasn't particularly fond of the Sandra Bullock hit Bird Box when it first came out. The premise of invisible creatures killing people felt cheap and the film's structure was hopeless from start to finish. It felt like the filmmakers themselves were blindfolded from scripting to editing, but that didn't stop the film from being a huge success or having spinoffs, the first of which has just premiered on Netflix. It seems a little late to release a Bird Box film five years later, considering, but the Spaniards behind this spinoff do what the original film never managed to do: make something reasonably watchable out of the premise.

It didn't take much to make sense of the invisible creatures really, but the directors behind Bird Box Barcelona take a different angle on the story that doesn't just follow fumbling survivors in blindfolds. This time we follow a father and daughter who have a different agenda than just surviving the apocalypse. There's a drama and structure here that actually complements the horror that the original film wanted to convey and makes me want to see how it all ends - even if you already know what's going to happen.

Bird Box Barcelona

It's a pity to see it turn out like that. Visually, the film is much bolder, and I like the new characters much better than the hopeless idiots of the Bullock reel, but what starts with an unconventional protagonist's quest for redemption ends with an overly traditional and cheesy final act that ruins what little atmosphere the film built up in the first place. The most fundamental problem with Barcelona, however, is that it never really gets scary. Sure, there are some grisly suicide scenes, but it never becomes nail-biting, scary or even particularly exciting. Instead, it's entertaining all the way through. It's not a bad way to spend a slow Saturday night if you're browsing for light fare on Netflix.

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The final scene indicates that there are much bigger plans for this universe, but honestly, it doesn't feel like there's much more to tell at this point. Barcelona salvages much of the basic premise with a more emotionally focused script and some effective twists that touch on the darkness of humanity, but it's probably time to put the lid on this film series.

06 Gamereactor UK
6 / 10
It doesn't break your will to live, like the last film!
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