'Bird Box' Flies High In Netflix Debut With Record-Breaking Views

'Bird Box' Flies High In Netflix Debut With Record-Breaking Views

Apparently one of the biggest movies of the holidays wasn’t it movie theaters – it was on your streaming device.

“Bird Box’ is the Netflix original thriller taking the globe by storm. It stars Oscar-winner Sandra Bullock as a mom, who, in the wake of a global terror that drives people to suicide, attempts to guide her children to a safe haven – while blindfolded.

Netflix reports that more than 45 million accounts watched “Bird Box,’ setting a record for most streams in the first seven days for a Netflix film. Of course, we really only have their word for it. In October, Netflix boasted it had 137 million subscribers.

The streaming service has notoriously been hush-hush about the numbers of actual viewers it has. And in the past Nielsen numbers haven’t always matched what Netflix reports. When questioned about the “record views,’ Netflix clarified that it only counted views that had surpassed 70 percent of the film’s total running time, including credits. And each account was counted only once.

“FWIT, I’m fairly sure Bird Box is a phenomenon of some sort, but without verifiable data or comparative data for context, a Netflix-affiliated Twitter feed coming down from on-high with suspiciously specific (and yet entirely vague) data is the epitome of nonsense,’ Daniel Feinberg, a critic at The Hollywood Reporter, tweeted over the weekend.

Either way, it was a good week for Netflix between “Bird Box’ and “Black Mirror: Bandersnatch,’ the groundbreaking interactive movie that let’s viewers make choices throughout the movie affects the plot.

Add to that, the streaming service also has “Roma,’ the critically acclaimed film from director Alfonso Cuaron that will be the first Netflix original film to be nominated for Best Picture by the Motion Picture Academy. And, damn, it just may win the Oscar. You can place your bets on what film will win Best Picture at several of SBR’s top-rated sportsbooks including BetOnline and Bovada.

To say Netflix is ending 2018 on a high note would be an understatement.

Beyond streaming, “Bird Box’ is also having an impact social medial platforms. It seems a lot of us like being terrified while groping around in blindfolds. Twitter is littered with memes and people wearing blindfolds from soccer players to Jedis Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles to “Fifty Shades of Grey” — (not much of a stretch).

The film has gotten mixed reviews and criticism for some similarities to John Krasinski’s “A Quiet Place’ (2018) and “The Happening’ (2008), the M. Night Shyamalan movie starring Mark Wahlberg and Zooey Deschanel.

  • “‘Bird Box’ winds up resembling M. Night Shyamalan’s disastrous ‘The Happening,’ so maybe Malorie has it right: It’s better not to look.’ – Adam Graham, Detroit News
  • “Sandra Bullock commands the screen in this only fitfully scary, post-apocalyptic sci-fi/horrorshow in which invading aliens can only kill you if you look at them. So keep your eyes wide shut.’ – Pete Travers, Rolling Stone
  • A wannabe shocker with a clever premise that doesn’t really get down and dirty or betray the base instincts of a born horror filmmaker. – Todd McCarthy, Hollywood Reporter

In the New Year, we’re sure we’ll be hearing of some kind of “Bird Box’ party game injuries – drunken blindfolded adults that have fallen over their golden retriever or cat while trying to find the bathroom. Or in some homes, Saturday.