Movie Review: Buried

I was supposed to watch this movie with no expectations because I had not watched the trailer and did not know what to expect beyond the premise of Ryan Reynolds buried alive in a coffin. But when I was putting my name on the list, Grace, organizer of the screening told me that the movie scored 86% on Rotten Tomatoes. I was like, “wow, that is high.” I still didn’t know what to expect though. I sat inside the cinema, and they started playing the trailers. The first trailer was for Buried. I mean come on! I’ve never been to a screening where they played the trailer of that very same movie just before the movie. The trailer had some really big statements, something along the lines of “Plot Twists Hitchcock would be proud of”. From that moment on, my expectations just shot through the roof. I was thinking to myself, “this must be one awesome movie.”

This is one of the most daring movies I’ve seen to date. Honestly, a movie that starts off with about a minute of blackness and just sound takes a lot of guts to pull off. The director managed to use enough different shots and angles to make it look interesting without being repetitive. Ryan Reynolds definitely pulls off his best performance to date (forget Deadpool)- the whole movie is just him in a box for about 1.5 hours. Yes, I kid you not. And it managed to hold my attention all the way to the end. I would compare it to the first half of Wall-E where you just have the robot all alone on the planet. Wall-E bored me to death, Buried did not.

But in the end I think my high expectations for the movie ruined my experience. The movie just left me with so many unanswered questions unsolved.

I can’t really review this movie without any spoilers, so if you haven’t watched the movie, skip the next 3 paragraphs:

When watching the movie, so many questions ran through my head: Why does he need to turn on the lighter when he has the cellphone light? Why does he get so many items in his backpack? The knife felt like it was put there cos the kidnapper knew that he would have to use it. How can his phone make so many calls? Why did service get cut off sometimes? Why did the terrorist agree to lower his ransom of 5 million to 1 million so quickly? Why would they kidnap a truck driver when there were so many more valuable targets. I mean they could find out about his kid and wife, I’m sure they had the resources to find out he was broke.

Why did he have to write so many numbers down if they were saved on his phone? Why didn’t he try changing the language in the first place? What was the significance of the battery meter? The phone never even runs out of battery. The twist felt very weak to me. It never seemed as if he was going to be rescued at all, so when he didn’t get rescued I wasn’t surprised. Unconvincing voice acting from the voices at the other end of the phone. The part where he asks the lady on the line “how did you know my name?” I thought it was going to be some conspiracy which he was part of. So many red herrings that just left me hanging. They could’ve made the movie so much bigger than it was.

I expected him to be trapped in a box in some sort of lab where they were testing humans ability to survive being buried. Or something more far fetched since the movie seemed like it was headed in that direction. I guess I was looking for something more.

All in all, the movie wasn’t bad. It wasn’t fantastic either, but it was definitely above average. I really liked the fact that they managed to shoot the movie with just Ryan Reynolds in a box. I don’t think many people could pull that off. Props to the director and Ryan Reynolds for his performance. If you just watch the movie without thinking too much, it should be an enjoyable ride. Just don’t expect too much, and you’ll be pleasantly surprised. I rate Buried 6/10.

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