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Film Only Review:
We start the film with a guy in a room who is moving from room to room and suddenly he hits a booby trap and gets sliced to death. We then move on a little in time and are presented with 5 people. Nobody knows where they are or why they are there and have no recollection of being taken there by anyone.
At first the group of people cant work out why they could of been possibly taken there and then after talking we realise that the people have been picked for a reason. One is escape artist, one is a student and a maths genius, one is a Doctor, one is a police officer and another well at first he isn't upfront to begin with but later reveals he helped to design the shell of the building. Does he have any information that could help to get them out and save themselves?
With no food or water and plain coloured rooms each one has a hatch. Alot of the room though are booby trapped to the max whether it be with poison or something slicing you up so you have to tread carefully. The guys and girls need to work together using their special attributes to try and find a door to get out......if there is one.
However with little sleep, comfort, food and no natural light the teamwork plan starts to go backfire. People start to panic and peoples morals and ethics are tested. When they stumble on a new member who is mentally ill and someone who shouts and shakes involuntarily is added the mix at first people want to protect the man but could he hinder their safety especially when some of the rooms are sound activated and you could get your head cut off? What do you do save the man or yourself?
Is there a way out or isn't there is the hundred dollar question. With hundreds of rooms, no food and people starting to turn on eachother can anyone survive?
The first time I watched this film it left me frustrated to be honest and I struggled to keep up with the story (not something I usually struggle with by the way!). A bunch of people in rooms that they cant get out of and filmed in a lot of darkness, the first time I watched it, it dragged and the only reason I got it out to watch it is because I am moving to a little house and I'm getting rid of a lot of dvds from my huge collection and thought I'd simply give it another go as it had been a few years since I first watched it.
Its filmed well and although I never really got to grips with the names of the characters and no one in it did I recognise I have to admit second time viewing worked for me!
The story is an interesting one with plenty of twists and turns in it. There isn't a lot of gore in it but what there is, is filmed brilliantly with real attention to detail. The music in it is lacking and in part it does drag on and towards the end of it I did tire of it till the end scenes came which then regrabbed my interest and actually made me smile as I thought there was a very nice twist at the end.
This isn't the most gruesome film I have ever seen, the acting was ok but nothing Oscar worthy and I'd say if you can pick up a copy cheaply enough give it a whirl and I got my copy a few years ago from Amazon.co.uk for around a couple of pounds including postage and packaging and that was a very good but used copy.
Rated 15 and with a runtime of 87 minutes.
This review is also posted on Ciao under this same username.
"Cube" is a 1997 sci-fi film which was directed by Vincenzo Natali, who has also directed such films as "Splice" (2009), "Cypher" (2002), and "Nothing" (2003).
Warning: Spoilers will likely be given during this review.
The film is 90 minutes in length and stars Nicole de Boer ("Dead Zone", "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine", "Phil the Alien") as Leaven, Andrew Miller ("Princes in Exile", "Perfectly Normal", "Trapped in Paradise") as Kazan, and Maurice Dean Wint ("Rude", "Curtis's Charm", "Hedwig and the Angry Inch") as Quentin.
The plot for the film reads as follows: Six different people, each from a very different walk of life, awaken to find themselves inside a giant cube with thousands of possible rooms.
The storyline follows six individuals, all of whom are held in some sort of cube with each room within also being a cube. Each room in the cube has four walls, a floor and a ceiling, and each of those has nine mini cubes with a door in the centre of them. If you could stand in the middle of a Rubik Cube and see its faces, this is what it would look like.
Question. That's the word I will use a lot in this review, because questions is what you're going to ask yourself. Are you ready for "Cube"? More to the point, is it any good? Let's find out!
The film begins with a minor character, Alderson, who wakes up in a white room, adorned with black patterns. He opens one of the doors to reveal a blue room and decides he doesn't like the look of it, so proceeds to the floor's door which opens up into a red room. Confused, Alderson moves to another wall and opens an orange-looking room. He then climbs up and into this room and, thinking he's safe, walks two steps. This is the film's first kill and an ingenious one in which he's sliced apart by what could be classed as a high-tensile mesh of cheese wire.
I like the atmosphere of the backing ambience, which gives a sense of purpose. It is deliberately slow and eerie, but calm at the same time. It trains the mind into not really thinking it's there but brings it out into the forefront as well, if that makes any sense. Either way, it's very clever, even though it is not constant throughout.
Some of the film's traps are very good, visually. I like one near the beginning where Rennes throws his boot into a room which sets off a motion sensor and two flamethrowers appear, setting the boot on fire. It shows the viewer that not all of these traps are foolproof, which is something I like to see. It also begs the question of how long has the cube been there, and how many people have perished in that fashion.
Another question which could come to mind is when Holloway mentions that they have about three days without food or water. Leaven replies "They've gotta feed us, right?" But do they? And who are they? More to the point, what if 'they' are not even watching? I did warn you that there are multitudes of questions that could be asked - just like there are multitudes of rooms in the cube.
The inhabitants figure out (with Leaven's mathematical skills) that each room which has prime numbers etched into the doorways are safe from traps. This leads to the film moving on quickly, as room numbers are flashed on the screen and the group travels safely through. When the script continues, the four walls are not prime numbers, as well as the floor. This paves way for the introduction of Kazan, who falls from the ceiling door as Quentin tries to open it. It is clear Kazan has some kind of mental problem when he says "this room is green" and walks over to the wall, where he begins banging his head until Holloway steps in.
I do like a short scene between Holloway and Quentin where he's saying it's some rich psycho's entertainment and makes a reference to Francisco Scaramanga (played by Christopher Lee) in the James Bond film, "The Man With the Golden Gun", which is another film I really enjoyed.
At the half hour mark it's revealed that Worth designed the outer shell of the cube, but does not know the who or why. It is also around this part of the film where Quentin begins to show his dangerous side. I'm not sure if that was the plan all along or whether he began to grow frustrated at being trapped and let his anger come out. Either way, he begins to assume control and appears very dominant.
I really liked the scene where the remaining five must cross a sound-activated room, which is not easy with Kazan in the group. Having said that, he did want to go back to the blue room so he got his wish! You must expect a certain amount of sound to happen and though you can hear little bits here and there, it doesn't seem enough to set off the trap. It is entirely possible the sound engineer mixed it down, though. It's quite funny when Kazan gets his pant leg caught in the bottom door and doesn't know what to do.
Close to the hour mark we lose one of the characters. I'm not going to spoil it by naming them or how it happened, because I hope you're going to watch it for yourselves, if you haven't already! So from here on in, I won't be mentioning names, just scenes and events. That way, you'll not expect things to happen when they do, hopefully. Anyway, they all take a nap in a scene which I didn't think belonged, then the fun continued.
Just when they think they're making progress, another door is opened and they make a shocking discovery. It is the room they dragged Rennes in from the trap that killed him, and it begins to sink in that they're right back where they started. They are all naturally dismayed at this, apart from one who finds it hysterically funny.
The film does move on fast with around 25 minutes left and I often wondered if they should have beefed it up by 10 or 15 more minutes. Budgets are hard things to work with, but there must have been deleted scenes that never made it for one reason or another, which would have given us more. But then again, we would only be getting the same stuff over and over, so maybe the film could have been thinned out without cramming most of the good bits into the final third.
Predictably, only one survives. It had to be this way, though, and it has been the way of the horror film for many years, and probably will be for many years to come as well. As stated before, I just wish it had been longer.
All the characters are named after prisons around the world, and each has a purpose for being in the cube, although neither of them wished to be there. It is a little difficult to go into major detail about each of the individuals, but a brief outline will be able to describe them.
Quentin is a police officer with a penchant for violence. Played by Maurice Dean Wint, he shows a soft side to start with, but as the film progresses, his strong and aggressive nature comes out and it appears he wants to want to be in charge. Quentin is named after San Quentin State Prison in California.
Dr. Helen Holloway is named after HM Prison Holloway in London, England. She is a doctor and also a conspiracy theorist. She is often seen helping those in need during the film and also has her own radical ideas on why they are where they are. She is portrayed by Nicky Guadagni and is seen as timid but strong at the same time.
Kazan, played by Andrew Miller, is an autistic young man who has a brain for numbers. He is named after the prison in Kazan, Russia, and could be seen by the group as the one most likely to get them all killed. However, not all share that theory and some actually warm to him.
Rennes is named after a prison in Rennes, France. He is an escape artist, nicknamed 'the Wren', and has successfully escaped from seven prisons. The character is played by Wayne Robson, and if the prisoners thought they were going to get out of there, it would be him they had to turn to with his knowledge of escapology.
Joan Leaven is partly-named after the United States Penitentiary, Leavenworth. She is portrayed by Nicole de Boer and has a head for mathematics. Not much else is known about Leaven but she is slightly on the timid side - a complete opposite from Quentin.
David Worth is the other part of Leavenworth. It transpires that he was contracted to design the cube but does not know why they are all in there. Worth is played by David Hewlett and is seen to be a cynic of epic proportions.
"Cube" is one of those cult classics that never seemed to make it into the mainstream but had a following of people that loved it. The questions you should ask yourself are "what is the Cube?", "why are they there?", "am I going to be able to like this?" and more. When you have finished watching this film you will probably be scratching your head and trying to answer those questions in your own theoretical way. If you've watched it with someone, else or a group of people for that matter, you will come up with slightly different answers to the questions you ask, and that's what makes "Cube" special. The ability to make the viewer wonder what just happened and come back for more is a talent that is hard to pull off.
In writing "Cube", the trio of Andre Bijelic, Graeme Manson and Vincenzo Natali, have given life to something that gained cult status, even if some of the critics did not like it. I often wonder if half of those paid critics actually watch what the rest of us do, because it seems some slate a film for whatever reason just because they can. It is independent low-budget films like this which are sometimes better than the big budget Hollywood features with over-the-top special effects and beefed-up acting.
If I was to criticise "Cube", I would have to say that there were nowhere near enough death scenes, and thought that it may have been better had there been more people inside, possibly even two different factions, oblivious to each other, and never even meeting. As it stands, I liked the film a lot, but I often wondered if there could have been more to it.
What the Critics Say
Los Angeles Times: "Even though there are tedious stretches with less-than-riveting characters, the film gradually pulls you into its claustrophobic spell and becomes acutely suspenseful in its final half-hour."
The New York Times: "Cube, the story in question, proves surprisingly gripping, in the best ''Twilight Zone'' tradition."
TV Guide: "Natali's film has a fabulous look, a nerve-wracking, claustrophobic mood, a number of genuinely suspenseful set-pieces and some sublimely stomach-churning special effects."
San Francisco Chronicle: "Cube falls into the dreaded trap of allegory -- aaaaaargh! -- and the clunky dialogue makes a midnight bull session seem brilliant by comparison."
The A.V. Club: "For his first feature, Canadian director Vincenzo Natali has, like the setting of his film, created a complex piece of work around an essentially simple foundation."
My rating: 7/10
There are some movies that definitely live up to my expectations and some that don't. The Cube is one that exceeded my expectations. I had heard a few positives vibes and the plot line sounded intriguing, but I went in to the movie pretty open minded.
7 Strangers wake up in a mysterious cube with no recollection of how they found themselves there. Can they escape from this cube with seemingly endless rooms with it, especially when these rooms contain deadly traps, well only one way to find out....
Maurice Dean Wint - Quentin
David Hewlett - Worth
Nicole de Boer - Leaven
Nicky Guadagni - Holloway
Andrew Miller - Kazan
Julian Richings - Alderson
Wayne Robson - Rennes
Well this film has a massive cult following and it is pretty clear to see why. The budget for it was absolutely tiny, and I imagine the actors worked for pretty cheap, literally a few grand each and the rest was then spent on the gory effects, although to be fair there were only a few. This isn't a movie that is good due to any of the effects however, it is due to the tension and the story and wondering what you would do if you were in the same position.
The cast is all pretty much unheard of, and since the movie has come out only one of them from my point of view has gone on to do anything decent and that is David Hewlett who became a major player in the stargate franchise and more specifically Stargate Atlantis. The acting is pretty decent considering how unknown they are. It is not perfect but they all portray themselves well and the main star for me was the character Quentin. I always love these types of characters and feel that he really carried the movie and added that extra element that lets say wouldn't exist otherwise.
Thankfully the movie isn't just a straightforward slasher with each room containing deadly traps. Not all the rooms contain traps and it is interesting to see what the characters get up to in between and learn a little as the movie goes along about the actual Cube itself and why it exists and even why the characters were put in the cube in the first place.
There have been a couple of sequels which I will hopefully review soon, but the originals are usually the best and this is no exception. Whilst not perfect it is still a very enjoyable film and has a lot of tension that is needed to really captivate the audience. Considering the budget and the lesser known cast I say this is well and truly mission accomplished.
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Six Strangers wake up from their normal, daily lives to find themselves trapped in a surreal prison, which is a seemingly endless maze of interlocking cubical chambers armed with lethal booby traps. None of the strangers know why or how they have been imprisoned, but they soon realise that each of them has a skill that could help contribute towards their escape. We don't know who created this prison like maze and we don't know why these strangers are in there. Will they co-operate and find a way out of the cube or will they die trying?
Actors in the Film
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There aren't many well-known actors in this film apart from David Hewlett whom has been in Stargate Atlantis, Rise of the Planet of the Apes and Splice. Nicole de Boer has started in films Dead Zone and has appeared in Star Trek Deep Space Nine. Some of the other actors in the film have been in Wrong Turn, X-Men The Last Stand and other well-known films.
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The film starts off with us seeing one of the men waking up in a large room, in which he turns a dial on the wall which leads into another room which looks exactly the same. There are 3 dials in the one room each leading to a different room. Something happens to this man but I am not going to say what exactly. We then see the words 'The Cube' on the screen. The film then starts off with us seeing some of the people in this maze as they meet in the different rooms. None of them know where they are what they are doing there. One of the guys realises that this place they are in is full of booby traps and he warns the others not to go climbing about in the different rooms. They all try to figure out how they got to this place but none of them know. We start to learn about a few of the characters in the beginning of the film, and one particular character which we learn about soon dies from going into the wrong room. We follow the rest of the characters from room to room as they try to work out how to choose the right door into different rooms. We see some of the different traps in the rooms go off as they use their boots to activate the traps to determine which rooms are trapped and which one's aren't. The way some of the traps are set in the room are very clever as you never know what is going to happen as you can't actually see any obvious traps in each of the rooms. We find out that the cube has an outer shell in which the characters think they can find in order to get out of the cube. This is when one of the characters comes across as very suspicious to me. The characters are becoming tired and their vision is starting to become blurred, they are weak and are getting weaker. One of the characters whom is studying maths begins to work out that the rooms in the cube each have co-ordinates which could lead them to the exit, but it's not as simple as that. Will anyone get out of the Cube or will they die trying?
Where to buy the DVD
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You can the DVD from as little as £4.09 which is a used DVD on Amazon. To buy this new it will cost you approximately £19.99 which is rather expensive for an old film.
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I decided to rent the film from LoveFilm as I thought it sounded like a pretty good film. When the film started and I had watched the first 15-10 minutes, I wasn't sure I was going to like it, how-ever my eyes were glued to the screen throughout the film and I couldn't take my eyes off of the TV in fear that I was going to miss something. Although we see the six strangers go from room to room trying to figure out which one's have traps in throughout the film, this surprisingly didn't make the film boring and it was actually quite a good film that I did enjoy. The story to the film is very simple but is good as it keeps you wondering what is going to happen as they all take it in turns to enter the different rooms. I wouldn't buy this on DVD as I don't think I would watch it again, but I do recommend it to others if you haven't seen this film before.
(review also on ciao)
I was looking for movies which are similar to the Saw movie series with all the gore, etc. And upon a quick google search, I came across the title "Cube" being mentioned quite a few times. So, I bought it and I was pleasantly surprised upon watching it. I wasn't too sure what to expect. However, the concept is really good, original and it really gets you thinking.
~~~The movie itself~~~
I didn't know what to expect expect at first. However, I was pleasantly surprised, and got hooked right in from the opening scene which is amazingly gory. The cube is basically one big cube with many smaller cubes in it. Each room/cube has 6 doors in it (each side has one door) and some rooms are equipped with what seem to be extraterrestrial weapons and murderous devices. This movie is indeed a low budget one, but it is right up there with the SAW series in terms of how creepy, suspenseful and psychologically agitating it is. It doesn't contain as many gory scenes as SAW, but that is because this movie involves character building and the relationships between them. There are people of varied professions placed in the cube, and it is very interesting to see how each one of them reacts to the confined spaces and horror of being locked up in what seems to be a torturous and inescapable maze.
The suspense it continued throughout the movie as you don't know what is going to happen in the next room or who is going to die next.
Cube is a Canadian horror/ psychological thriller film that was released in 1997. It is 90 minutes long and rated 15 due to gore, violence and language. The film was low budget and with an unknown cast but it has slowly become a cult classic.
A group of strangers all awake in a mysterious place, none of them knowing how or when they got there. Each of them are trapped in separate cube shaped rooms which all have 4 doors, one in the middle of each wall. Unknown to these people, some of the rooms beyond the doors are laden with deadly traps which are mostly invisible at first.
The prisoners start to move around the cube and eventually meet with each other. The group realise that each of them have different skills that can help them escape and they start to work together to get out of the cube and find out why there were put there in the first place.
Nicole de Boer - Leaven
Nicky Guadagni - Holloway
David Hewlett -Worth
Andrew Miller - Kazan
Julian Richings - Alderson
Wayne Robson - Rennes
Maurice Dean Wint - Quentin
I first saw this film years ago randomly when it was on cable. When I first watched it, I thought there had never been anything like this before and it was completely original. Now that the Saw series has been out a while, I feel like some of it's aspects have been taken from this film. The sick, twisted games and knowing someone is behind them all is the basis for Saw but where did we see it first? Right in this film!!
Seeing as this film was low budget, you cant expect the special effects to be amazing but there certainly are effective. Some of them aren't even that gory but there is just something about them that really creep me out. The big thing about the cube and its traps really show how important someone's actions can affect other people and the outcomes in this film are massive.
Cube gives us a great mix of characters with extremely different personalities and backgrounds. The way they must interact with each other and try to work together in order to get out of the cube. One of the males has mental health problems and causes a number of problems when the group try and work their way through a number of cubes. It was quite sad to see some of them want to dismiss him straight away because of his health issues and it can really show how cruel some people in society can be like.
Even though the actors are relatively unknown, they all do a fantastic job and their characters come across real and you can see the different emotions from them all. I love a horror film where there aren't any major names involved because sometimes it can take something special away from the story.
My favourite thing about this film is that we never get to find out the history behind the cube and who is responsible for putting everyone in there. The plot really leaves the watcher wondering where it all came from. I still haven't seen the sequel and prequel to this film and I just hope they they're as good as this.
Unfortunately, this DVD is out of production for region 2 now and I don't have a multi region player so I'm pretty much out of luck. I would definitely recommend this film for any sci-fi or thriller fan. You wont be disappointed.
Cube (1997) was a little known, low budget science fiction film that over the years has become something of a cult classic. Directed by Vincenzo Natali with a cast of relatively unknown actors its story on the surface is quite simple:
Six people find themselves trapped in a cube shaped room with doors in the middle of each wall, floor and ceiling. Each door leads to another room exactly the same but behind some of the doors a deadly trap awaits. They must help each other to stay alive as each of them has a special skill which if utilised could mean they manage to escape their prison and find out why they were taken in the first place.
The plot follows the prisoners as they try to figure out a way to get out of the cube without getting hurt or killed and the tension builds nicely throughout the film. It isnt an all action, guns blazing type of film and you really get to know the characters and their faults. Some of the traps make you jump and I found myself urging the characters to move quickly as you sometimes see the traps before they do.
Of course it would be too much to ask that everyone manages to survive and whilst the death scenes aren't that gory they are very effective, perhaps because you get to know the characters so well and get so engrossed in the story that you do feel a sense of loss for them. As the film progresses peoples true personalities come through and their strong desire to survive and get out at any cost pushes them to do things you wouldn't have expected them to do.
The secret of the Cube is worked out and revealed, and although some people who have reviewed the film before find the solution to be a bit convoluted I liked the reasoning and explanation behind it.
The story answers many questions but also leaves the viewer with other unanswered ones, this is where the film reminds me of the "Saw" series.
Although Saw is a lot gorier and bloodier than Cube you can see similarities between the two (well I can anyway) and although Cube came out a good few years before Saw it introduced us to the concept of traps and how your decisions can affect other people so much.
Two films followed Cube; Cube 2: Hypercube (2002) and Cube Zero (a prequel) in 2004, both well worth watching.
I would definitely recommend Cube to any sci fi or horror film fan, its a clever little film that deserves its cult status, It is one of those films that benefits from repeat viewing and is well acted in my opinion. It scores a very healthy 7.5 out of 10 on IMDB.com and I really enjoyed this film.
The film appears to be out of production on region 2 dvd, but is available on region 1 and also from online DVD rental companies. Amazon Market Place has it for sale starting at £10.99 but if youre lucky you should be able to get a copy from Ebay for a few pound less.
4/5 from me, a bigger budget would have made some of the traps more impressive, but still excellent in my opinion
note: also appears in part on Flixster and The Student Room
Cube opens as a man named Alderson (Julian Richings) wakes up inside a strange cube room with no idea how he got there. Each cube has a door on each side, which leads you through to another cube. Each cube is either safe, or contains a trap designed to kill you. He is viciously murdered in the opening titles, a fence trap slicing him into dozens of chunks, setting the tone for what is a gritty, violent, visceral, daringly original film.
From here, six people wake up in the Cube and must decide how to escape. What makes this film so great isn't just the genius conception, but the characters. Firstly, there's Quentin, a strong leader-type who seems to have a few secrets and some violent tendencies, particularly towards David Worth, a nihilist who resigns himself to fate for most of the film, and mysteriously seems to know a lot about the cube for someone who claims he doesn't know what he's doing there. Dr Helen Holloway is an older woman who is a doctor, and the more motherly and helpful person of the group. Joan Leaven is a weak nerd, but as they begin to realise the fabric of the cube, her brains come in better use than they expected. Also, there's Kazan, an autistic young man who becomes a liability as they traverse through the cubes, particularly when they come across voice activated traps, as he has a tendency to act out when he gets agitated. Finally is Rennes, an escape artist who has flown the coup on numerous prisons and gets rather cocky.
A wonderfully original film that is an astounding achievement given the miniscule budget. Tense throughout, well acted, and with a real kicker of an ending, this is indie cinema at its best. Sadly not many I know have seen this, but it deserves a larger audience, for its sheer economy of storytelling, vicious kills, and cerebral approach to a seemingly impossible situation.
Cube has unexpectedly turned into a cult movie. Slightly helped by the fact that the Region 2 DVD is OOP (Out Of Production) so they're harder to find now. Please note, the picture on DooYoo is actually the Region 1 version so if you're looking to buy the rarer one, go for the Region 2 version.
Anyway, the plot is very original and bizarre. It shows a total of seven people waking up in coloured, separate rooms, not knowing how they got there or why. They join up quickly and form a small group (of six) in an attempt to find the exit of this giant cube they are trapped in. Each character has their skill. For example, one is a doctor and another a cop.
The main task is finding out which room has a lethal trap and what activates it in order to pass though. Guesstimate wrong and you die. There is some gore, straight from the start in fact, but what I liked is that Vincenzo Natali knew when to stop. It wasn't a non-stop blood bath for lack of dialogue and sub-plots (Saw series come to mind) but rather a one step forward, two steps back scenario with gore as the set back.
It is a low budget movie which is obvious due to the setting. In fact, there is only one room for the whole movie and the different coloured walls are just removable panels. They didn't shoot in sequence which I never think is a good idea. This is because it took too much time changing panels so all the blue scenes were done, then the red scenes etc. This may of caused some of the dodgey performances in certain scenes and was a mistake in my opinion. However, I can't see it being done too much better on a high budget. Sure better special effects could be used (the room with voice activated spikes looked very fake) but I felt that this is part of what made Cube popular. It's an out of nowhere horror, with unknown actors and an original concept. If a big budget was thrown into the mix I bet we would have seen Nicholas Cage unconvincingly leading a handful of cliché scenes, held together by the only improvement; special effects.
The ending was well thought out and satisfying. It didn't answer too much but gave you a sense of some sort of accomplishment on the journey. You're finding out about this construction at the same time the group are so it has a really immersive and claustrophobic feel to it.
There are flaws that you could criticise such as the inconsistent acting and repetitive scenes but overall, I think Cube is much more of a success than a failure.
If you sit down to watch a film knowing that it's a science-fiction piece about characters stuck in a cube like mice in a maze, you might have some expectations. You hope at least that the ordeal will be tense or thrilling for some interesting characters, that it might be cleverly constructed with some good cubic effects and that the psychology will convince. There may even be something else to make it worthwhile, something provocative.
Well, in my opinion the film delivers a lot of the above - to the limits of its scenario. It has done well to make itself an unexpectedly good slice of dark, notional science fiction that fulfils the promises of its claustrophobic device. It manages not to sink into B-movie incredulity, but retains an integrity throughout. It does not restrict itself to science fiction either - the cube could almost be a sort of Clive Barker-style hell and is an ultimate symbol of impregnable complexity: the prison of a mind.
It is a hell but one of the realistic struggle of mind versus environment, and man versus the weaknesses in each other. It may not be remembered as a chilling horror (perhaps it could have been even darker and more memorable) but it proves to be a worthwhile exercise nonetheless. The sense of desperation and claustrophobia is convincing as we experience the physical and psychological efforts of a group of characters to escape their imprisonment inside a cube that is also intermittently re-arranging. Chosen for differing talents - a cop, a doctor, a mathematician, a designer etc - (supposedly enabling them to figure their way out), they battle with themselves, the possibility of traps in every room, the need to concentrate in the face of fear and an on-setting paranoia. Apart from a dim memory of their previous lives, this is the only world they know and all that the viewer sees (except for a bright light at the end).
It does become exciting in one scene reminiscent of Mission: Impossible in a chamber where the trap is sound activated. I was not expecting it to be scary but there is certainly an edge provided by the presence of these heinous traps and subsequently their continual close proximity to death. The acting is nothing exceptional but it is suitably unsettling and fearful. The characters do attract some interest at least through an element of mystery. In fact the initially strongest character turns out to be the weakest and most threatening.
In such an intimate setting (only the colours of the rooms change), you feel some sense of the weight of their ordeal at corresponding low moments in their morale. The pace is maintained through their tense relations and fragmentation and sudden failures with their efforts at escape. In this way the viewer is uncomfortably involved and mildly guessing until the end. They are victims and you may be lulled into the futility of their situation but there is a way out and it relies on the ability to concentrate on maths......
There are a few interesting ideas here. Together with their skills they make up the combination for their escape: the cracking of the cube. Besides the traps and the physical restrictions - that mean they are slowly weakening - the only inhibiting factor to their escape is themselves. This proves to be the hardest.
There is also a lingering thought that much of our complexity exists as side-effects that have no real application. There is a crucial point where this secret emerges. The initially unknown and dejected Worth turns out to have been an oblivious designer to the cube's outer shell and explains that the cube may have no actual function or engineer(s) responsible. He was simply one of those who was involved in its construction with no knowledge of what he was constructing; it simply exists and people are placed inside it to suffer an ordeal without purpose; so that the cube is put to use. It is mindless. This is a nice touch of irony possibly applied to entertainment and the elaborate existence of the film itself.
We have a sense of mankind at its purest, forced into their environment and struggling to fight it (the entire film is shot from within it). Their inability to comprehend their predicament of being inside such set surroundings is simply a hindrance to them. They must concentrate 'only on what is in front of them'. This is incidentally what Worth confesses to have been doing in his previous life outside and is perhaps why he sees no hope or will to live. It is vaguely illustrative of the cube as a microcosm of modern society; a complexity unknowingly created from life and then used and accepted for no other reason than that it has been constructed. It is therefore something to be wrestled with and understood lest it should claim us........With this in mind how many of us are blindly going about our lives in the building of a society and, like Worth, are unintentionally employed in making additions to its prison-like constructions - constructions that, in the present or some future, ourselves or our children will be placed in?
I won't try to extract too many connotations from the rather desultory action in the climax, but it is I suppose unpredictable. The sole survivor is not selected on any strength or talent basis but on simple chance. The efforts of the others allow one character to escape.
The traps themselves might have been more imaginative and unexpected, although the ones they do show are certainly grisly. More elaborate special effects may only have detracted from the mundane or cell-like quality of the rooms.
Cube is otherwise a fairly slick experience of mankind genuinely helpless and reliant upon its will to live, its wavering determination or morale, and its teamwork and wits. It is of Life as a test in some horrible, abandoned system with only one hidden way out........
Will we destroy ourselves before the restrictions of an environment do?
I first saw Cube some years back, back when it was very much a 'new' concept. I am a great fan of the idea of human psychological experimentation and I feel this film adequately and successfully fulfilled my expectations. Overlooking the occasional dose of bad acting from the stereotypical Doctor and Cop characters, the whole futility of the situation, being trapped inside the unknown with no food... water... outside contact and very few chances of survival, is unnervingly realistically portrayed. You have to give in to the odd flight of fancy but the principle in itself is very captivating. I will not spoil the film for you by giving away the story, I simply urge you to embark on this journey into scenario you really wouldn't want to be in. Its not a masterpiece.... but it is far more compelling than most of the films that have tried to capture the same emotions and fears over recent years.
I first bought this film because my partner reccomended it to me. After watching it i was amazed by it i loved the mystery surrounding it, as the film doesn't give much away. The film keeps its suspense by not giving much away.I like how in this film you get to see alot more about the story behind the cube.
The plot- six strangers wake up to discover their trapped in a cube. They soon realise the cube their in has many different rooms,many of which has traps in. Their is only one set way out, they soon have to figure out what that is, you watch as they all struggle to find the way out and turn on each other.
directed by Vincenzo Natali the cast includes Nicole Deboer, Nicky Guadagni, David Hewlett.
I loved this film i think this film may be where the makers of saw got their ideas from. I'd reccomend this film to any sci-fi fans
i have also written this review on ciao
Sci-fi is the one genre, along with horror, that has really suffered of late on the big screen. Danny Boyle has tried to revive things with the interesting looking Sunshine and I quite enjoyed Event Horizon. The Cube trilogy, like the above a more intriguing angle on the topic, is something that I have been aware of for a while but have yet to see any for rent, only Blockbusters policy of buying old DVDs from customers finally uncovering one.
I think mobile phones and bad acting have destroyed the notion of ever seeing a decent horror movie era again-the internet providing far worse for people who really want to be shocked-and so mixing it in with the sci-fi genre is the best way forward. Cube is not the most innovative and intelligent film in the genre but its certainly unique and leaning that way.
Nicole de Boer ... Joan Leaven - The Math Student
Nicky Guadagni ... Helen Holloway - The Doctor
David Hewlett ... David Worth - The Architect
Andrew Miller ... Kazan - The Autistic Man
Julian Richings ... Alderson - The First Victim
Wayne Robson ... Rennes - The Fugitive
Maurice Dean Wint ... Quentin - The Cop
The basic premise of the Cube series is that everyday people are drugged and abducted from their normal lives and wake up in a cube shaped prison cell, although we never see how they get there, part of the films mystery. All we know is its modern day and no ordinary incarceration, certainly no court cases or charges laid against the strangers that end up here, a bit like Guantanamo Bay, although this was made in 1997 so we can annul any political statements from director Vincenza Natali.
After ten minutes we have meet our six strangers; a cop, a mathematicians and a notorious prison breaker the first to rise and shine to their predicament, clearly people specifically selected to test their acquired skills. The Cube shaped prison has six doors, one for each wall, easy to open with no locks. Obviously the disorientated prisoners need to start opening them to figure a way out, the nerves further shredded by the arrival of a Rainman afflicted autistic guy howling like the Wolves. But nothing is going to be easy in their alien environment and to their horror they discover that the myriad of rooms have lethal traps, one guy spectacularly sliced and diced early on.
After the prison break guy gets his face burnt off by acid its clear this is not going to be easy, the supposed expert now dead. But hope arrives in the form of the youngest of the group, a child math genius who gets to grips with the written digital codes on all the doors, a possible clue to escape. With each surviving member of the group now realizing that they all have something to offer to win their freedom, and so lives, will they do the right thing and pull together or will the endless series of gruesome traps and boxes defeat them.
The Cube is something different and good fun and we all like to see some gross and obscure mutilations disintegration now and then, a good way to keep a movie audience on their toes when both are flagging with the inmates, which the Cube does when the plot doesnt quite bare close inspection.
The acting is pretty poor-the Canadian budget spent on the authentic and atmospheric effects instead- and the script as equally simple. But we are here for the mystery and that does keep the film moving on and interesting. Critically-and its renting point-the movie does hold your attention all the way through as the remaining inmates slowly twig the codes and traps.
It is an old movie and Im sure it has been on terrestrial TV somewhere, but for me Im just happy from the satisfaction of tracking down a movie and the start of a trilogy I have been intrigued about. Horror and Sci-Fi fans alike will enjoy this and if you enjoyed the Saw trilogy then this is more Saw than Saw 111.Nothing wrong with good honest B-Movies now and then guys.
Theres an audio commentary by director Natali if youre keen and some production stills of the movie. I couldnt see how this would work and so left well alone.
Cube 2: Hypercube is the sequel to 'Cube', and as such takes on a very similar format to the original. The story line is fairly simple, but it undoubtedly makes more sense if you've already seen Cube before seeing Cube 2. The Story: Cube 2 opens with a girl awakening in a strange looking cube shaped room. She's alone and somewhat confused as to what she's doing there. The room is a pure white cube with small metal looking doors in the centre of each panel of the cube. Each of the doors are connected by what appear to be metal ladders. The girl decides to look around and opens one of the doors - they're touch sensitive - one touch and the door slides open. She peers into the next room... it looks exactly the same as the one she's just come from... She enters it cautiously, but, just as soon as she's got her body through the doorway, we see her gasp and fly upwards towards the ceiling. This is just the start of what the Hypercube has to offer... It soon emerges this girl isn't the only person 'trapped' inside the Cube. Eventually eight strangers find each other. None of the strangers seem to have anything in common when they first meet and appear to be a random bunch of people plucked from obscurity. The mixture of strangers is very diverse - from a seemingly senile old lady, to a 'tough guy', to a young blind girl. One thing soon becomes clear to the group - they need to get out. The Cube isn't a safe place. Once they realise this is no ordinary Cube, but a Hypercube it becomes evident that normal rules of time and physics do not apply. The group have to tackle all manor of tricks and traps within the Hypercube including 'The Razorsphere' (a deadly flesh shredding machine), 'The Cube of Light' (a trap that ensnares victims in a sliver of light) and the 'Time Gears' (a force that disfigures the body with the effects of time). Who Would The Film Appe
al To? This film certainly isn't a horror film, so, despite the descriptions of some of the traps of the Hypercube, this isn't one to avoid if you're normally one who doesn't like Horror. However, it's difficult to classify this film into one particular genre... it's kind of Sci-Fi, though a conspiracy theory edge makes it kind of a Thriller, yet then again it's certainly not like the majority of other Sci-Fi's or Thriller's you'll have seen. The actors and actresses are not big Hollywood stars (Kari Matchett, Geraint Wyn Davies, Grace Lynn Kung, Matthew Ferguson, Neil Crone, Barbara Gordon, Lindsey Connell, Greer Kent, Bruce Gray), but the acting is of quite good standard It's a film that you'll probably enjoy if you like your films to be easy to watch, but also to make you think... kind of Matrix style... It's rated 15, so certainly not suitable for kids. What Does The DVD Have To Offer? The opening screen of the DVD gives you the following options: * Play Movie * Scene Select * Trailer * Extras Play Movie and Scene Select are as you'd expect... In total the film consists of 12 scenes (including the end credits), therefore you can soon flick backa scene if you are interrupted whilst viewing or just plain didn't get it! Trailer: This allows you to view the trailer for Cube 2 - if you haven't seen the first Cube, then it may be of some use to view this, as the trailer shows (extremely briefly) how the first cube had rules. Other than that, the trailer isn't all that exciting and isn't the sort of thing you'd watch more than once. Extras: Choosing the 'extras' option reveals a new menu. This time, you get the following options: * Director's Commentary and Audio Setup In choosing this, you first select the audio set up for the feature (5.1 or stereo) then the film starts along with the director's comme
ntary. Although this is fairly interesting, for this particular film I wasn't so interested that I wanted to hear all of this. One thing to note with this feature is that you need to use the correct audio setup - using 5.1 if you don't have the speakers etc. to support it doesn't give you anything! (As I soon found out). * The Making of The Cube At over half an hour long this feature shows talks about the opening credits sequence, creating the 'virtual cube' (the computer generated version of the set), the moving walls/crystals, the razor sphere, etc. This is quite an interesting feature, especially if you're curious as to how they created some of the special effects. * Green Scene Effects This part is a little strange to me - it basically shows a few of the scenes, and then, for some of those it shows them with the 'green screen'. The green screen is basically a plain background to which computer effects are added to after it's been filmed. The reason for this part being slightly confusing is that the scenes shown appear to be in no apparant order and there is no commentary behind explaining anything. * TV Spot: Reason / TV Spot: Terror Both of these are short trailers for the film only lasting a few seconds each. Worth one look, but that's about it. CONCLUSION: Cube 2 is a pretty good film - in particular you'll enjoy it if you've seen the first. However, the DVD extras aren't perhaps as great as they could be. More details and images of how they create the special effects used could enhance this DVD further. Unless you're a huge fan of the film, it's probably one that's better off rented as opposed to being bought. Film Rating: 4/5 DVD Extras Rating: 3/5 Overall Rating: 4/5 *** Apologies for the fact that this opinion is in the category for the original Cube DVD, but as this is the sequel I didn't think it was too out of place ***
You think you’ve seen weird films? Think again, and then go and watch ‘Cube’. Cube takes your average weird movie, chews it up and spits it out into one big heap. That’s because Cube is probably the weirdest movie I have ever seen sitting next to The Cell. Vincenzo Natali, the Director set out on the Sci Fi flick to purely confuse us and to take a look at human nature at it’s best. It really is pure genius on the directors and writers behalf. For what cube gives us is a look into Human Nature, good vs evil and how people will do anything when it comes down to it to be the one who survives. Cube was filmed with a budget of just 365,000 canadian dollars. Now, I’m not to sure on Canadian dollars, but that really don’t sound all that much in movie terms, actually I’ll rephrase that, it sounds like absolute peanuts. However, they did it, and did it will. It wasn’t huge in the box office, actually, it was hardly noticed, taking just $489,000 and I don’t think it was ever even released in the cinema over here, it seems to be a straight to video release, which is a shame, as this film really could have turned into one of the most talked of movies of the 1990’s, given some advertising to drum peoples interest up. To put the plot simply, as it is fairly simple, 8 people wake up to find themselves in a room. A cube room, with doors on the ceiling and on the walls, even the floor. The rooms are all different, bright colours, all with extremely weird patterning on the wall. They don’t remember anything, they don’t know how they got here, all they know is that they are here. To start with, they are all in separate rooms, but soon discover that they are not alone when they all group together, apart from one person in the beginning who basically gives you an idea of the film as we see him get diced up by a tiny wire fence. These rooms all have different colours, but t
hey are all the same, doors on each face, identical in size, but some are booby trapped with deadly weapons, as they soon find out. The weapons and booby traps are pretty sophisticated soon, with motion detectors, noise detectors, retinar scans. If some poor person ends up in one of the booby trapped rooms, they are painfully killed and in a brutal way too, as you’ll soon see if you watch this movie. The only difference in the rooms, apart from the colours is that each door has a number at the opening. All the characters there all come from different backgrounds, and soon find out that they all have different skills, apart from one boy who has a mental problem, and gives the others problems, especially when it comes to noise detectors! They find out that one is a cop, the other a high ranking mathemitician, another a doctor. They all start to work together, with the exception of one of the people there, who later we find was involved in making the outside of the cube….there is no way out….according to him anyway. In this film we explore human nature. We see the people working together, doing their very best to use their skills to help each of them fight their way out of this cube. With anything up to thousands of rooms, they may never get out, so they work together, build a team, and slowly decipher things. That is until exhaustion wears in, dehydration and all the other things associated with being stuck in one place. Stress plays a big part and the need to survive takes over. We explore what one person will do to survive, how they will treat others who are in the same situation, and to tell the truth, this film does it in an excellent way and really is astonishing to watch. The ending is something that has been much talked about on various film websites. The ending itself is left open to a huge number of possibilities and to be honest, is one of the best endings I have ever seen, even if nothing ha
ppens. It really does leave this film to your own imagination, and of the 4 people I watched it with, no one shares my viewpoint. This is the beauty of the film, and that’s why I said it could have been the most talked about films of the 1990’s. Even now, 6 months on after having watched it, I still think about the ending, it sticks in my mind like the ending of no other film ever has done and torments me every time I think about it. I’ve watched the film 3 times now, and every time, I think I have cracked what the message in the film is, maybe I have cracked the ending. Who knows…I know I sure never will, hey, I don’t even think the director and writer knows what the ending is supposed to portray. Acting is good, even though all of the actors are very unknown in the world of films, but that’s what the low film budget does for you. However, this does add to the film, I don’t want to see big names in every film, and especially not in a film of this class, otherwise it takes the reality out of it when you see them in TV in interviews, hey they are supposed to have dies a gruesome death, the next thing you see is them in front of you at the premier all joking and smiling. This film doesn’t use that, and it’s much better off for it. I would highly recommend this film. Even if sci-fi isn’t your thing, your going to like it, and even if you don’t like it, it’s going to haunt you and torment you like no other film ever has. This film is good, it’s better than good. It’s mind bending, and completely weird! P.s. For any of you who have seen it, below is my theory.... As non of the people in the cube can remember how they got there, I think they have died, especially when you think back to how they said they got there….the doctor opening the fridge…electrocution maybe? I think this film shows a decider of who will go to heaven and who
will go to hell, a selection process if you like to see how people will react and see if they qualify for heaven, especially with the ending and the light at the end of the tunnel. That’s my theory anyway, I’m sure you have another completely different one though!
If Clive Barker had written an episode of The Twilight Zone, it might have looked something like Cube. A handful of strangers wake up inside a bizarre maze, having been spirited there during the night. They quickly learn that they have to navigate their way through a series of chambers if they have any hope of escape but the problem is that there are lethal traps awaiting if they choose their route unwisely. Having established some imaginative and grisly punishments in store for the hostages, cowriter and director Vincenzo Natali turns his attention to the characters, for whom being trapped amplifies their best and worst qualities. The film is, in fact, similar to a famous episode of Rod Serling's old television series, though Natali's explanation for why these poor people are being put through hell is a lot closer to the spirit of The X-Files. Cube has some solid moments of suspense and drama and the sets are appropriately striking: one is tempted to believe at first the characters are lost inside a computer chip. --Tom Keogh