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Rate "Button, Button"
10 11%  11%  [ 1 ]
9 33%  33%  [ 3 ]
8 11%  11%  [ 1 ]
7 11%  11%  [ 1 ]
6 22%  22%  [ 2 ]
5 11%  11%  [ 1 ]
4 0%  0%  [ 0 ]
3 0%  0%  [ 0 ]
2 0%  0%  [ 0 ]
1 0%  0%  [ 0 ]
Zer0 0%  0%  [ 0 ]
Total votes : 9
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Unread postPosted: Sat Jun 27, 2009 7:11 am 
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Episode: 20.2 -Button, Button

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Original Air Date: March 7, 1986
Stars: Brad Davis, Mare Winningham and Basil Hoffman
Writer: Logan Swanson (from a story by Richard Matheson)
Director: Peter Medak

A young couple strapped for cash are told that if they push a certain button on a certain innocuous little wooden box, someone they don't know, will die and they will immediately receive $200,000.



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Unread postPosted: Sat Jul 04, 2009 2:17 am 
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Its an OK episode, just thought it was too simple of an episode, and the ending was predictable.

Now its going to be a movie called "THE BOX".

I saw a trailer, sadly does not excite me.


Z

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Unread postPosted: Tue Sep 15, 2009 6:05 pm 
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Ehh -- looked like it could've been good, but just fell into the average category for me.

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Unread postPosted: Fri Sep 18, 2009 6:55 pm 
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Contrary to previous reviews - I enjoyed this episode. Is it good enough to make a full blown motion picture - no, but it's a nice TZ segment.

Things that worked for me:
    Basil F'N Hoffman! He gave the role of Mr. Stewart the needed edge of creepy that the role called out for.

    Brad Davis! he played the inquisitive, lowly mechanic with ethics very well. Small and seemingly lost against Mare Winningham's dominant personality, but he steals scenes quite easily without completely upstaging. A gifted actor who is sorely missed.

    Mare Winningham's chain smoking! If you watch a couple of scenes, she has all the ashtrays filled to the brim with cigarettes, each with cigs still burning in each. And note, she isn't very particular with her brands. She smokes lights, Full Flavors, menthols, kings, 100's, 120's - that in itself is very funny to me - being a smoker.

Things that didn't work for me:

    The overall pacing just drags. There is only so much contemplation one can watch without being (A) ahead of the players (B) past the point of interest.

    This would have been great as a 10 minute or maybe 15 minute piece tops.

    The outlining plot is intriguing and the twist plays well on initial viewing, but it is reminiscent of "What's In The Box" from TZ-TOS - which, frankly, is a superior production.

Overall, I must admit, this episode does stay with you after watching it. It makes you wonder how many times the box has been passed around and how many times people took the chance. It also makes you wonder about who Mr. Stewart actually is and possibly works for. These reasons alone lift this from the doldrum it actually comes across as.

7!


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Unread postPosted: Sat Sep 19, 2009 5:41 am 
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Loved what the guy said in the end. Made the Beatch think, finally! :ROTF:

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Unread postPosted: Mon Oct 19, 2009 7:03 am 
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A 9 from me. I like the episode a lot. I love the twist even more!

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Unread postPosted: Thu Oct 22, 2009 11:16 pm 
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I guess the inclusion here of an almost prototypical O. Henry ending, the twist, one of poetic justice, is what makes this one of my favorite episodes. But, as with a few other episodes, there is also the style of the presentation - it's offbeat. The wife (Mare Winningham) has a nasty disposition; she's always in a bad mood and griping. The husband (Brad Davis) seems to appreciate what little they have. They both have slightly quirky personalities and are kind of overplayed, exaggerated. I realized, as the episode progressed, there was a madness to this method. The tale is basically a dark farce. It ends up making some fun of such human beings; they live their lives desperately in a way and, soon, someone or something will take full advantage of their weak character traits.
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Winningham - I found I couldn't take my eyes off her; she's a bundle of exaggerated gestures and weird twitches, over-wrought inflections and stressed out attitudes. She understands that she's in a dark comedy, which this is, of course - wickedly dark, with a wicked twist. But, the one who takes the acting honors is Basil Hoffman as Steward, the tall dark man. With a voice that is at once soothing and sinister, Hoffman glides in and out of the story like an urbane Satan. At the very end, he pauses in the doorway of the couple's apartment as he leaves, his tall figure almost silhouetted against the opening. It's an image I've never forgotten, even 20 years later. Also, the camera zooms in on the wife's eye as she makes the bloodcurdling realization of what's in store for her. As I said, the style sometimes makes a story - based on Richard Matheson's original; the film version, The Box, is finally coming out in a week or so. As mentioned above, the trailer is not a good sign; this story is probably better suited to 15 or 20 minutes.

I give the episode a 9.


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Unread postPosted: Fri Oct 23, 2009 1:51 am 
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Great review and I agree about the performances of Winningham and Hoffman. keep it up :D

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Unread postPosted: Sat Aug 14, 2010 6:04 am 
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My wife and I watched the movie "The Box" last night. So I wanted to show her 'Button, Button' and see what she thought. Like me, she thought the acting was bad. Honestly, I understand what is being posted here, but it's overdramatic in my opinion, Mare Winningham especially. I actually did like Brad Davis, though his stuttering was getting irritating after a while. But I did enjoy his neurotic performance. As for Steward, I thought he was overdramatized as well to the point of cheesy. Perhaps, after watching Langella, and experiencing the more serious, ominous atmosphere of the movie, the hokeyness of the TZ episode was just utterly ridiculous to me. So I stand by my "5" rating for this episode. I really like the story, but it just doesn't come off well on screen for me as it would simply on the page.

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Unread postPosted: Sun Aug 29, 2010 11:45 am 
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Good, not great, nice twist. 4 out of 5.


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Unread postPosted: Wed Oct 06, 2010 4:50 am 
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This is a 6 for me, it could have been better I thought, but the over the top perfomances of the leads which turn this into a black comedy doesn't work, the trouble is it isn't very funny and just undermines the central idea behind the story which would have worked fine played straight.


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Unread postPosted: Wed Jul 18, 2012 4:38 pm 
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For a more modern take on this story and the movie The Button, check out this Funny or Die video and let me know what you think here:



http://www.funnyordie.com/videos/44b3d8 ... rel=player


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