The Black Box

2005 [FRENCH]

Action / Mystery / Thriller

IMDb Rating 5.8/10 10 1924 1.9K


Top cast

Marion Cotillard as Isabelle Kruger / Alice
José Garcia as Arthur Seligman
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
805.31 MB
French 2.0
24 fps
1 hr 27 min
Seeds 4
1.61 GB
French 5.1
24 fps
1 hr 27 min
Seeds 4

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by claudio_carvalho 6 / 10

Intriguing Mind Games with Disappointing and Predictable Conclusion

While driving in a winding narrow road, Arthur Seligman (José Garcia) has an accident and capsizes with his car and awakes from a short coma in a hospital in Cherbourg. With amnesia and without recalling why he left Paris, Arthur is informed by the nurse Isabelle Kruger (Marion Cotillard) that he had spoken lots of senseless sentences and she gives her notes to him. Arthur reads the disjointed sentences and many images flash in his brain while he tries to find his missing brother, using drugs and psychiatric treatment in his investigation. Suddenly, his reality changes to another one, and Arthur discloses innermost secrets hidden in his mind since his childhood and finds the truth about his brother and himself.

"La Boîte Noire" has a great initial sequence, with Arthur's accident, and is intriguing. Unfortunately, the predictable conclusion is very disappointing. This movie and "The Jacket" (of the same year – 2005) are rip-off of Adrian Lyne's "Jacob's Ladder" (1990). The performance of José Garcia in the role of a paranoid character is great and the cinematography is very above the average, showing the pace of a video clip. In the end, this film is a reasonable entertainment. My vote is six.

Title (Brazil): "Caixa Preta" ("Black Box")

Reviewed by guy-bellinger 6 / 10

Superficial psycho thriller

Good beginning: a car that drives too fast along a narrow winding coastal road. The viewer expects an accident, and after a while, it happens. The driver (we still do not know who that is) couldn't escape his fate.

Next, the viewer (who once again is put in the hero's place) finds himself lying helplessly in a hospital bed, in a state of mental confusion, assailed by blurry visions ans disjointed sounds.

Unfortunately the rest of the film, although reasonably intriguing throughout, is a disappointment. Not that it is not well made. On the contrary, Richard Berry works hard at creating an unsettling atmosphere, resorting to nearly all the visual and sound effects existing. The real trouble is his naive approach to psychoanalysis. Just like in those old-fashioned Hollywood psycho thrillers of the 1940's and 50's, he tries to explain everything. In the course of his investigation Arthur manages to figure out ALL THE CODED MESSAGES his brain has been sending him during his coma. He identifies the source of his trauma and now he can live happily ever after! Oh, I wish reality was like in those pictures. You feel bad mentally, so just consult a shrink and sooner or later you will be cured. But I do not think the things of the brain are so square, so well-organized, so mechanical. To make matters worse the final explanation is outright ridiculous. While the credits roll, disappointment sets in.

Luckily you are not aware of all this while you are watching the movie due to the careful direction of Berry, the intense performance of José Garcia and wonderful character actors by the name of Michel Duchaussoy (as the elderly ailing father) and in dual roles the excellent Gérald Laroche and Bernard Le Coq.

Good time guaranteed before you realize how shallow all this is.

Reviewed by incitatus-org 7 / 10

Visually stunning

Tearing down a coastal lane, Arthur flies out of the bend only to open his eyes again in hospital. While he was out cold, his unconscious spoke, revealing his hidden self as an emotional Pandora's box. In a dreamy, confused state he battles absurdity to unravel a lingering, youthful trauma.

Visually stunning and cut at video-clip speed, you are in for quite a rush of a film. Oscillating between captivating and horrific, "The Black Box" is really well made. There are countless little examples of beautiful attention to detail scattered around. No doubt because of this attention to detail, the imperfections reveal themselves as well, but they are forgivable. But not all missteps are.

Most importantly, the story-line is not good enough. The film can get away with a somewhat flimsy story for a good hour because of the captivating presentation, but towards the end, it is almost impossible not to be disappointed by the simplistic wrap-up. A real shame, considering the effort which went into this production. Do not hesitate to watch it none the less, as you will be rewarded with plenty an attentive detail and good use of imagery with the unfortunately paranoid José Garcia stuck in the middle.

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