Vanessa Cicozi, Entertainment Writer

Director Lorcan Finnegan released a science fiction film called “Vivarium” in 2019.

A young couple who are living a normal life decide they want to buy a home together. Primary school teacher Gemma has been dating a handyman named Tom for a few years.  While not having a lot of money, they drove through a development of identical houses and toured house number nine. The realtor leaves the couple at the house, leaving Gemma and Tom alone and wondering how to get out of the development. The car soon runs out of gas, meaning they have to stay at the house. It was very weird to them in the beginning, until they started to lose their minds. With only being in the house for three months, they are welcomed by a baby boy who grows into a young adult within days. The boy kills Gemma and Tom, then takes over the realtor’s spot for the loop to continue. 

The use of set materials played a major role during the movie. With having the houses be the exact same, it made viewers believe it was real. All the houses were a blue-green color with the same front yard and the same layout inside the houses. This created an eerie sense within the movie because while Tom and Gemma were trying to leave, it seemed like a continuous loop. Another major use for the movie to come to life is the use of special effects. The special effects used are screen cutting and visual effects. The use of screen cutting while the couple was trying to escape made viewers feel that they were actually trapped and couldn’t get out. During the end of the movie when the boy turned into an adult, Gemma started to go crazy and visual effects were able to portray what could’ve been going on in her mind. 

The plot of the movie is to not lose your mind in a loop. When the couple arrived at the development, it was an ongoing road of the same house. All of the houses were the same, but only the addresses were different, meaning the couple got placed in house number nine. As Gemma and Tom keep trying to leave, they start to get fed up with each other saying they’re not going the right way. They then decide to stay in the house until a baby is dropped off and Tom has no care for the baby  and continues to dig a hole in the yard. Tom spends many days digging while Gemma is taking care of the young boy, but one day he becomes an adult. He leaves the house every day, which makes Gemma wonder until one day Tom is exhausted and dies in the hole. This makes the boy kill Gemma and throw her into the hole but little did they know, they were digging their grave the entire time. 

The rating of “Vivarium” is a 7/10. It is recommended to viewers who enjoy and understand the aspect of mind-games and delusions.