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Review of Buried, the First Movie to Be Purchased at the 2010 Sundance Film Festival 2010-01-25 08:00:00

Sundance Snapshot: Buried

As I waited patiently in line to see Buried at Sundance last night, I learned that the film is the festival's first movie to be bought for major release! I'd already heard a ton of buzz about the film, but my curiosity peaked when I heard the exciting news. So did it live up to the hype? Let's review.

  • Who's behind it? The film's directed by Rodrigo Cortés, with Ryan Reynolds as the one and only actor in the film.
  • What's it about? Paul Conroy (Reynolds) wakes up to find himself trapped in a wooden coffin, buried alive after being taken hostage in Iraq. With only a lighter as a guide and a cell phone as a connection to the outside world, Conroy has roughly 90 minutes to assess his situation and attempt to contact someone, anyone, that can help him escape.

Did I develop claustrophobia or what? To find out, just


  • What did I think? I went in equipped with enough background information to know that the film would make me feel squeamish at the very least, but what I loved about it is that it's just so well made. Reynolds took a risk with the role, and his gripping performance will easily establish him as more than just a rom-com actor. While the camera work and angles absolutely make you feel a little boxed in, the cinematography never gets stale, and you're constantly seeing Reynolds in a different way.

    As for the script, my biggest concern was how the story would wrap up (either with Conroy being rescued or suffocating) without being cliched or expected. However, the final scene of the movie is still shocking and surprising. Buried is all at once frustrating, tear-jerking, and emotionally manipulative, but as one of the most intense movies I've ever seen, it's absolutely worth your 90 minutes.

I've got another full day of films ahead, so be sure to check out all of my Sundance coverage as the festival continues!

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