Carrying seven boxes seems simple until you find out those seven boxes may be the cause of your death if you lose them. The film 7 Cajas (7 Boxes) is a nail-biting, seat-gripping and knee-slapping thriller that combines the right amount of comedic relief to the intense drama.
Writers/directors Juan Carlos Maneglia and Tana Schémbori captured an exciting film about seven boxes that contained something lethal to one’s life if the boxes were lost or damaged. Victor, a young boy, is asked to carry these seven boxes to a certain location, and naturally, he finds himself in a dilemma as things get complicated along the way.
It’s arguable to say the 7 Cajas couldn’t have been as successfully thrilling if it weren’t for the sound department. Germán Acevedo incredibly used the element of sound to enhance the suspense or comedy in each scene. The intricate sounds of the boxes moving as they were being wheelbarrowed was impeccable. As a viewer, I was pulled into the scene rather than feeling like just an audience member watching it.
Aside from the sound quality, the film was visually stunning. Each shot had purpose and to some degree it intensified the plot and context of the storyline. The amount of close-up shots, conceivably allowed the viewer to react, even if that meant gripping the theater’s seat or squirming in it. The close-up shots also created more of a dark and dramatic effect that coincided with the movie’s suspense.
Yes, 7 Cajas was intense, but it was slightly more humorous than expected. The comedic relief added flair to the film that arguably hasn’t been done as much in an action thriller. The film’s use of clever one-liners were elements that allowed for a nail biting break and it made it seem more realistic. There was a moment when one of the “bad guys” seemed too ridiculous to be making threats. He was a slightly uglier and a whiter version of Borat.
The film also had a direct story line: Get the boxes to the destination. Action thrillers can sometimes be confusing and all over the place, but 7 Cajas stayed true to its initial intentions. It’s possible that the unplanned events in the film only added edge and wittiness as opposed to confusion. The actors practically always delivered their lines with concrete emotions that were relatable.
As a viewer, it was possible that the motifs were greed, curiosity and desire. The curiosity of the boxes’ contents overpowered the control to listen to instruction. It’s possible that the lust for money is what helped the film flow because ultimately that’s what everyone was striving for, even if that meant getting the money in dishonest way.
The film could have easily used the seven boxes’ secret contents as a cop-out to create a less intense film, but Maneglia and Schémbori chose a storyline that cleverly brought anxiety and solace. The film arguably increased the magnitude and standards for future plots that are considering using objects as they’re form of suspense.
7 Cajas screened at the 2013 Cine Las Americas International Film Festival. Watch the official trailer below.