Mitch Glass’ sci-fi thriller, Box 616 is the story of a young man who receives a strange inheritance. Glass’ short opens with our protagonist, Malcolm (Nick Rua), receiving a mysterious letter from The Bank Teller in the mail. The letter is notification that his trust will be released to him on a specific date approaching in just days.
As the day arrives, Malcolm meets with Bank Teller (Gary Bristow), and Bank Teller begins to read what appears to be his father’s will, but it sounds more like instructions. Malcolm is given a safe deposit box and then told he has also inherited a large vault. It is upon exploring this vault and finding a reel-to-reel recorder that his father’s mystery unravels.
“…upon exploring this vault and finding a reel-to-reel recorder that his father’s mystery unravels.”
Box 616 tells a sci-fi story with an ending that is more a punchline than a mystery solved. This means that this is a straight narrative with a straightforward ending that fulfills the promises made in its second act. This is not necessarily a problem, but from a thriller standpoint, the narrative should take several twists and turns that keep the audience off-balance to elevate the storytelling overall. That said, the punchline serves as an apropos sci-fi button at the end.
That said, Box 616 is a solid story with decent effects. Gary Bristow creates a charming little character out of the Bank Teller. He’s both mysterious and quirky and the perfect counter to the mostly silent and reserved Malcolm. Writer/director Glass builds good tensions to the end as he manages our curiosity from start to finish.