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Blind-sided after the apocalypse… Netflix’s Bird Box

Sight for sore
eyes: Sandra
Bullock in Bird Box

BIRD BOX is a pretty harmless-sounding title isn’t it? Rather like A Quiet Place, it hardly conjures up post-apocalyptic terror. But that comparison is not a random one — and, hands up, we’re not the first ones to point this out — where horror film A Quiet Place turned sound into a plot device, in Bird Box it is sight that throws its characters into danger. See the monster — a manifestation of your own worst fears — and you die.

To head off the brickbats that Bird Box has plagiarised this year’s A Quiet Place, note that it’s actually based on Josh Malerman’s book from 2014, so predates the John Krasinski and Emily Blunt hit.

With a starry cast headed by Sandra Bullock (yelling stuff like ‘under no circumstances take off your blindfold’ — how we wish that was in a totally different movie), there’s lots of sightless stumbling into sticky spots and quality such as John Malkovich (not as Hercule Poiroit stumbling into the wrong set, but as an alcoholic grump) and Tom Hollander turning in acting that’s way better than that required by the subject matter.

It had a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it cinema release but is now an early Christmas gift from Netflix, which made it.

Bird Box is available from Friday