Oxygen [6/10]

Oxygen” is a stylish French take on the buried-alive movie, one that dissipates a tad towards the end but still offers quality entertainment. A woman wakens in a futuristic cryogenic tube, hooked up with wires and catheters, surrounded by screens, with no memories. Her potential tomb’s oxygen is rapidly depleting (a fact imparted by a medically-inclined AI, voiced over atmospherically by Matthieu Alaric) and she desperately attempts escape and external communication and memory recovery. The tension is superbly choreographed by director Alexander Aja and the first half is a treat. Melanie Laurent’s solo performance is masterful. In my viewing, I was gripped until sometime during the movie’s closing half, when the plot offers a couple of stunning, yet story-sapping, twists, and a sentimental closing scene, while entirely consistent, highlighted a comedown from the star’s second-by-second push for survival. A welcome, tense horror/thriller, that’s what Oxygen can offer you, dear viewer, and you should accept and succumb.

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