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Bird Box | 2018 | R | – 5.7.8

content-ratingsWhy is “Bird Box” rated R? The MPAA rating has been assigned for “violence, bloody images, language and brief sexuality.” The evaluation includes one sex scene with partial nudity and a couple of scenes with kissing, frightening sequences of people committing suicide with bloody results and fights between people that end in death and bloodshed, and over 30 F-words. Read our parents’ guide below for details on sexual content, violence & strong language.”

When a mysterious presence begins forcing people to commit suicide, some realize that if they see the presence, they will also die. Hence, a woman (Sandra Bullock) and two children (Julian Edwards and Vivien Lyra Blair) travel through a forest and down a river to escape while wearing blindfolds, in order to protect themselves. Also with Trevante Rhodes, John Malkovich, Sarah Paulson, Jacki Weaver, Rosa Salazar, Lil Rey Howery, Danielle Macdonald, Tom Hollander, Machine Gun Kelly and BD Wong. Directed by Suzanne Bier. [Running Time: 2:04]


 – A woman opens a pantry door where we see a man and a woman in full profile nudity (her bare side, side breast, hip/buttock and leg and his bare side and partial chest are seen) with her standing on one leg with the other leg closest to the camera wrapped around the standing man, who is thrusting; the first woman gasps and shuts the door and we hear pounding that is likely the noise of continued sex.
 A woman and a man kiss for several seconds and the camera cuts to the couple side by side in bed asleep; she is wearing a long slip and he is shirtless. A woman wears a tank top that reveals cleavage. A woman wears a crop top of stretchy material with thin straps that hugs her breasts.
 A woman bends over a counter to stretch and when a man walks up behind her she says, “Not a chance!” A man says to a woman that she could have been his hot babysitter.
 We see a pregnant woman with a large belly going to an obstetrician and in a few weeks the belly is somewhat larger; we see another pregnant woman with a large belly. Two pregnant women go into labor at the same time (please see the Violence/Gore category for more details).


 - Action moves back and forth between a period five years earlier and the present time; during both times, something unseen drives people into a psychosis that makes people say that the unseen force is beautiful and then they commit suicide. Some of those in a psychotic state force healthy people to look at something invisible to the audience, causing them to become dazed and kill themselves.
 A man threatens two women and another man points a shotgun at the man, shoots him in the shoulder (we see blood flow) and struggles with him; the two men fall down a flight of stairs where one man stabs the other man in the chest twice with long scissors, causing a lot of blood flow and death. An infected man shouts and jumps into a rowboat and he punches a woman in the stomach with an oar and she kicks him in the face, and cuts him with a machete on the shoulders and throat until he falls overboard, bloody and dead. An infected woman tries to grab a man with a long hook, but fails and the man fires a shotgun at her and two infected men (we see blood on the wounds), and then shoots a wounded man again and he falls off-screen dead; the man shoots at the back of another infected man and we see matter and blood burst out of his chest. People in a supermarket hear whining and crying and they open a loading dock door as a man tries to force his way into the store; parakeets screech and flap their wings, detecting the demons and people shout as one man charges the other man and pushes him back out, going out with him (we see a large pool of blood flow underneath the door into the store).
 A woman driving a car with a passenger is distracted by a ringing cell phone and crashes the car purposely; it hits a parked car and flips onto its roof, the driver and the passenger crawl out with blood on their foreheads, and the driver steps in front of a large dump truck that hits her with a thud and carries her off-screen (presumably dead). A woman jumps out a shattering window and we see her fall off-screen, we hear a thud and it is implied that she is dead. A woman is grabbed by a man and stabs herself in the neck with long scissors; we later see her dead body lying with blood on the shoulder. A running and falling woman is taken by a man into a house where people inside cover the windows with newspapers and one man ties himself to an office chair; he looks at surveillance footage showing a strange cloud of leaves moving, then we hear loud thuds and see him slam himself out of the chair, butting his head on a stone shelf, bloodying his head and dying with open eyes. A woman bashes her head into a glass wall panel, cutting her forehead (blood flows and we see three large blood spots on the loudly breaking glass); the bloody woman slaps away a nurse and we see four cruisers with lights and sirens drive up outside. A woman runs with a screaming crowd that is running from something unseen, and she sees blood on her hands; she falls twice and a woman trying to help her falls dead (we later see that body with one leg covered in blood and her shoes several feet away). People have to leave a safe house when food runs low and a few of them go to a supermarket in a car with windows covered in newspapers; a shadow flies over the car with moaning sounds and the people in the car are blindfolded and they use GPS and they run over dead bodies with a loud crunch (we see bodies, wrecked cars and debris in the street).
 A woman puts three parakeets into a small box, and blindfolded with two children makes her way to a rowboat; she rows through thickening mist, the boat capsizes after hitting a floating truck cab, throwing the people into the water and the blindfolded woman goes through woods, and rushes back to the boat, falling twice and shooting a handgun at nothing. A woman shoots a handgun in the direction of a disembodied voice.
 A woman and two children argue about going over rapids in a rowboat and when they go over, the boat shakes and capsizes; the woman shouts, picks the boy off a rock, and finds the girl on shore where they struggle blindfolded over rocks and through woods, hearing moaning and disembodied voices shouting to them to take off their blindfolds, bushes shake by themselves, and a cloud of leaves floats over the people and away. A woman rolls down a hill and falls unconscious, and awakens to find two children about to remove their blindfolds (they don't) and the woman yells, "Do not take my children!" A woman lets a strange man into a safe house against another man's warning and another woman points a shotgun at the stranger until he lies on the floor and explains his presence. A knock sounds at a door and people argue in a house where a woman points a shotgun at them and demands the door be opened; a pregnant woman enters, crying and the other people slam the door behind her. A man puts parakeets into a freezer (another man takes them out), opens the windows of a house, and insists people look outside. A man's eyes become glazed and the camera cuts to the woods where we hear a shot off-screen that suggests the man killed himself. A woman breaks a vase over a man's head, but he recovers quickly.
 People panic in the streets, running and screaming as two women try to escape by car and an ambulance slams into a parked car. TV newscasts show crowds of people in different countries running and screaming through streets as fires break out. We hear about a mass suicide epidemic. Several pairs of cars crash loudly and three cars catch fire and explode into fireballs. We see a few bloody drivers slumped over steering wheels.
 A woman tells a young boy and a girl, "This will be rough. You have to be quiet. You have to keep the blindfolds on. If I find that you haven't, I will hurt you. If you look, you will die." A man talks about psychotic survivors from a mental institution for the criminally insane who are forcing healthy humans to look at monsters and commit suicide. We see charcoal sketches of eyeless heads, a head with a long snout, a skull, and a featureless head attached to long claws. A man raves about demons turning fetuses into lobsters and spiders during the "End of the World." A man and a woman with two small children receive a radio message that survivors of an earlier mass suicide are all safe downriver; the man and the woman argue a few times about whether to go or not and the woman plans to run away with the children. A man says something kills people via suicide. A man says another man lied down in front of a bulldozer and was killed, and that a different man snapped his own neck. Two men argue several times, two women argue loudly, and a man and a woman argue several times. Two women argue about newscasts. A woman calls a house and screams amid static and the phone goes dead. A young girl with a rope around her waist in the woods falls and is dragged backwards several yards until we see her mother pick her up and shout at her. Several people say, "We're all gonna die," "You won't make it," "We're not gonna make it," and, "You will die." Several infected people say that the unseen monsters and suicide are beautiful. Disembodied voices shout a dozen times, "Look at me!" A man and a woman steal the only car a group has and escape, leaving the other survivors in a safe house cursing them.
 Two pregnant women go into labor, at the same time; we hear trickling onto a floor and the camera pans down to show water under one pregnant woman's feet as she shouts in pain, doubles over, and goes upstairs where the other pregnant woman is in another bed and we see both women sweat, cry, grunt, and scream until we see two babies with bloody heads in the arms of the mothers. A woman on her knees at a toilet vomits and we hear retching but do not see goo. A woman finds an old school for the blind and many people, some with swollen eyes and some cross-eyed.


 - About 32 F-words and its derivatives, 14 scatological terms, 9 anatomical terms, 3 mild obscenities, name-calling (crazy, stupid, fool, simpleton, doofusses, creep, dumdum, religious, soft, spoiled, monstrosity, death wish, soccer moms, toad [sounds like]), exclamations (shut-up) 5 religious profanities (GD), 7 religious exclamations (e.g. Oh My God, God, God, My God, I Swear To God). | profanity glossary |


 - A man eats a pill from a medicine bottle, a woman swallows a prescription pill with water, and a woman grabs handfuls of prescription bottles from a kitchen cabinet and puts them in a backpack. A man drinks a small bottle of whiskey, a man drinks nearly a full bottle of whiskey in a grocery store (he slurs his words and hoots), a man takes a partial bottle of whiskey and pours two short glasses (he and a pregnant woman sip the drinks), and a grocery store has a long aisle of shelves of alcoholic beverage bottles.


 - Disasters, danger, fear, sadness, personal failings, suicide, mind control, mass hysteria, mental illness, sacrifice, monsters, demons, conspiracy theories, self-control, safety, facing problems, problem solving, rationing, determination, survival, escape, starting over, making personal connections, parenting.


 - People must manage their fears or those fears will destroy them.


Be aware that while we do our best to avoid spoilers it is impossible to disguise all details and some may reveal crucial plot elements.

We've gone through several editorial changes since we started covering films in 1992 and older reviews are not as complete & accurate as recent ones; we plan to revisit and correct older reviews as resources and time permits.

Our ratings and reviews are based on the theatrically-released versions of films; on video there are often Unrated, Special, Director's Cut or Extended versions, (usually accurately labelled but sometimes mislabeled) released that contain additional content, which we did not review.

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