Bird Box received 45 million streams in a week, making it the most streamed Netflix show ever. There was so much buzz that there were conspiracy theories that Netflix was creating bot accounts to start memes. (Spoiler: they weren’t.) It wasn’t an exceptional movie, but it had all the elements that I love in a film: horror, big stars, a post-apocalyptic setting and a core mystery. Plus it was free and I watched it at home. I wanted to know what happened next and I was never offended at the dialogue or plot, like that terrible Will Smith Netflix movie last year, Bright. (I didn’t watch more than half of that.)
It occurred to me whether filmmakers took blind people and the blind experience into account. It can be considered offensive to portray blindness as a doomsday scenario. (There was a 2008 Julianne Moore and Mark Ruffalo movie, Blindness, which was criticized for portraying blind people as depraved.) Sandra did work with a blind instructor, who told her that blind people would like to be recognized for their abilities. He also taught her how to move around using other senses.
[Bullock] revealed she also worked closely with a blind instructor to learn how to move and react without her eyesight for the Netflix film.
“I said, ‘What is it that the [blind] community wants represented on screen?’ He said, ‘I’d like for us to finally see our abilities rather than our [limitations],’” she explained. “It’s mind-blowing what abilities they have even though they don’t have their sight.”
She continued, “In the few times that we met, [we] were able to take away a few lessons like if we were blindfolded we could walk in this room, we could tell you were the people were, where the walls were if there was an object there.”
“Your body senses things that we just don’t use because we have our sight,” she added. “It’s pretty amazing.”
Given that we haven’t heard the same criticism of Bird Box as there was of Blindness (that may be due to the plot however) they must have done a decent job.
Spoilers for Bird Box
I read in a thread on Twitter that the book ended with people gouging their eyes out. (Not the leads, just some of the sighted people at the school for the blind where they found refuge.) This ending was a lot sunnier than that and I thought it was a little too perfect. I like horror movies to end with the suggestion that things can go south again. Also, we never saw the monsters on screen we just heard them. That made sense as they took the form of the person’s fears. However there was a plan to show one of the monsters. Director Susanne Bier said that they shot a scene with a green snake-like monster with a creepy baby face but that it ended up being cut. The monster seemed out of place and made everyone crack up laughing.
Also, how good was Trevante Rhodes? I want to see him in all the things.
— Nmcdtr (@_naimacadatar) December 31, 2018
— 앤 (@rosheeeeeeng) December 31, 2018
— David N. Louison (@Dloui_33) December 31, 2018
Photos credit: WENN and Netflix