The Alien Critic Reviews...
The Alien CriticReviews...

TAC Reviews...Cube 

 

A 1997 claustrophobic horror film that has become something of a cult classic in horror and sci-fi circles, which was directed by Vincenzo Natali. Sci-Fi fans will recognise Stargate SG-1 and Stargate Atlantis’ Dr Rodney McKay on screen as one of the people in the cube. Nicole de Boer who took over the role of Dax for the final season of Star Trek Deep Space Nine is also appears.

 

Cube Poster

 

Okay, I’m going to be honest with you loyal reader, I wanted to review Assassins Creed: Black Flag but as of yet I don’t feel I am far enough into the story to give even a semi-reliable review. In games like Hitman, Jurassic World Evolution or Bioshock I played enough of the games to be confident that my opinion wouldn’t change when I reviewed it. However, as I will discuss in the review of it, Black Flag has been holding back some of its content until I have progressed through the story. As a result I don’t feel I can fully do it justice until I have completed it to story’s end.

 

As I have been devoting considerable time to the aforementioned game I haven’t really got much else to talk about. My previous review Christine was a film that I liked and wanted to talk about, and Cube is another. It may be and old film, but fuck it, this is my website and I can review whatever the hell I want to.

 

So let’s crack on...

 

Eight strangers wake up in different cube-shaped rooms, as they start to explore their surroundings they are killed off by deadly booby traps. Only by working together can the survivors hope to solve the mysteries of the Cube and escape with their lives, except the traps are not the only things they have to fear.

 

That’s it really.

 

Cube’s real strength comes from its originality, and its mystery. The audience is treated with the opening visual feast of a man waking up in a cube-shaped room, starting to explore (and finding only other rooms) before being abruptly sliced into pieces by a mesh trap.

 

The opening sequence sets the trend for the rest of this cult classic.

 

Several other survivors, Quentin (Maurice Dean Wint), Worth (David Hewlett), Holloway (Nicky Guadagni), Rennes (Wayne Robson), Kazan (Andrew Miller) and Leaven (Nicole de Boer), are the unfortunate people placed inside the Cube. The only information that the audience learns about them is from what they tell one another, which means it may or may not be true. Why exactly these people were chosen to be put inside the Cube is also never revealed, however, all of them seem to possess some skill which might allow them to escape or lead to their demise.

 

The imaginative booby traps that the designers of the Cube have come up with created to kill are hugely enjoyable and keep the audience guessing about who will make it out and who will die. The traps give Jigsaw from the Saw films a run for his money. But the traps are not all those stuck in the Cube have to worry about, because as time goes on, the survivors begin to turn on one another.

 

Who will live and who will die?

 

Cube leaves you guessing right to the moment the credits roll.

 

The film is undoubtedly an underrated sci-fi/horror classic. The premise is simple but hugely effective, and the lack of information only adds mystery to the whole film. Hewlett as Worth, really plays the character with a complete lack of enthusiasm and miserable demeanour which makes the audience wonder why he wants to escape the Cube at all. His involvement with the Cube prior to being put inside it also creates tension between him and the increasingly unstable Quentin.

 

Wint plays the part of Quentin with a terrifying realism. The audience sees him becoming increasingly (and believably) unstable. He walks the fine line between being initially driven to escape and finally becoming obsessed with escaping regardless of who gets in his way.

 

The other characters also play their parts well, each one is struggling to cope with what has happened to them, and all of them are trying to dig deep inside themselves in order to not fall into depression and wait for exhaustion to take them. Whoever is controlling the Cube has not provided food, or water, so the survivors have only a couple of days to escape before they start to suffer from dehydration. 

 

Cube deserves more recognition, it was followed by a poor sequel and an equally bad prequel, but it is this, the original film that is a classic. Cube is (and should have remained) a one off film, the Cube’s mysteries are never revealed, and that is a trick that is so rarely employed with such effectiveness.

 

An old film that I want to talk about, do you think I’d praise it only to give it a big Thumbs Down?? No obviously I wouldn’t. As a result I am giving the film a strong Thumbs Up and I advise any horror fan to check it out

 

 

7/10 - Horror and science-fiction fans need to see this film because I promise they will not be disappointed if they do. Sci-Fi fans may also get a kick out of seeing Dr McKay and Dax from a time before they found fame and success in the Stargate franchise and Deep Space Nine respectively

 

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© Chris Sharman