Terror Cubed

Main Cast: Julian Richings, Nicole de Boer, Nicky Guadagni, David Hewlett

Director: Vincenzo Natali

In simplicity lies elegance; at least that’s one of our many buzzwords. In the case of this thriller’s main plotline it holds true. A bunch of people are mysteriously transported to a very strange place: square rooms separated by doors set in the walls, ceiling, and floor. No food or water can be found, and some of the rooms are trapped (as gruesomely depicted in the very first reel).

Can the group of people work together? With little story (other than brute survival), the movie hinges of characterization. There is a diverse set: a conspiracy-theory doctor, an unassuming and bitter nerd/office worker, a young college student, and a driven cop, among others (there are no stars, although there are a few recognizable character actors). We stick with them the entire time: banding together, testing the rooms and traps, trying to figure out the ‘why’ and ‘where’, the puzzles. There are, of course, surprises and setbacks along the way.

Cube is a small, personal film. Not a lot of action, heavy in dialogue. I appreciated it as a psychological study more than anything else. If you don’t mind no plot and a bit of a think, this works. Certainly dark, it moves along briskly despite the talk-fest. Not too bad, if a bit slight.

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