With today’s release of the Ryan Reynolds–in-a-coffin thriller Buried, last week’s strangers-stuck-in-an-elevator thriller Devil, and the upcoming James Franco–pinned-by-a-boulder thriller 127 Hours next month, it’s turning out to be a tough time for claustrophobic moviegoers
but a great time for those who love claustrophobic movies. Confining your film to a single space certainly has its advantages: a lower budget, obviously, but also an instantly suspenseful premise. (Seriously, Ryan Reynolds in a coffin: That doesn’t seem too hard to screw up.) Plus, anytime you set up a situation like this, you have some automatic elements to play with: For example, whatever amenities or supplies the characters might happen to have on them suddenly become of paramount importance. So, we’ve looked over film history and chronologically sized up eleven of the most claustrophobic movies ever made. What did we miss? Let us know.