“I wasn’t cut out to be cursed,” Jill tells us at the start of The Box. She is a good girl, a lucky girl, someone who seems to have lived a blessed life. That is until she was cursed through the act of stealing an evil box from a junk store. There are hints of The Ring, The Grudge and The Exorcism of Emily Rose present in The Box, but unfortunately the horror of this productionis relatively tame.

The story has the requisite twists and turns, but the way the script has been structured slows down the action.

Jill is in a psychiatric hospital because of her delusions. Her parents have died in a car accident and her sister has died of an overdose. Jill is claiming it’s all due to an ancient curse attached to a box she stole. Of course, the rest of the world doesn’t believe Jill, and she has been sent for an assessment with therapist Laura. Laura encourages Jill to talk about what has happened and to tell her side of the story. With the assistance of Jack, the man who used to own the box, the characters explain to the audience what has occurred.

11am is an odd time slot for a show that would thrive on some creepy atmosphere and a couple of midnight chimes. Unfortunately, no attempt has been made to dress the set in a way that might conjure up some of the spookiness needed for a show like this. The story has the requisite twists and turns, but the way the script has been structured (dialogue often interrupted by monologues) slows down the action. This lack of momentum further detracts from the scariness of the story. A little more ambiguity in the storytelling would certainly have heightened the terror – the audience is told so much at the start that very little tension is built up.

There is a decently scary plot present in The Box, but, unfortunately, the way the story is currently being told fails to chill. 

Reviews by Jenny Williams

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★★
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Performances

Location

The Blurb

An implacable curse. But nobody believes in curses, do they? Until it happens to them. We all make choices. But what if an unrelenting, unforgiving evil makes choices for us? Jill stole The Box and paid the price. Is she mad or is it real? Did she choose to steal, or did The Box choose for her? Did she choose to kill? Who's Jack? Why was he stalking her? Laura wants to help, but is she being manipulated? Your death or the death of all you love? No answers, only choices, can be found The Box.