Review: Bo Burnham’s Inside

Review: Bo Burnhams Inside

Photo By: Bo Burnham

Those familiar with Bo Burnham know him as a multi-talented American comedian, musician, writer, actor, filmmaker and YouTube star. His critically acclaimed one-man Netflix special, Inside, has been described as a masterpiece, and promises not to disappoint die-hard Burnham fans. Inside showcases his artistic brilliance in a myriad of ways, including music production, song lyrics, concept and execution, and cinematography. The fact that Burnham wrote, directed, filmed, edited and starred in this special is truly impressive.

Filmed over the course of a year, completely alone in a claustrophobic room in his guest house, Burnham reveals to viewers a real and raw side of his innermost thoughts and angsts he experienced while in isolation during the Covid-19 pandemic (though he never mentions the words “Covid” or “pandemic” in the film).

Themes of loneliness, anxiety, depression and panic attacks are woven throughout the film as Burnham invites viewers on a private tour of his seemingly tortured mind, expressed through original, catchy music scores and dark comedy.

At the end of this one hour 27 minute special, one is left to wonder whether Burnham created Inside as a form of mental therapy and/or a coping mechanism, or merely as entertainment for his viewers stuck in their own form of isolation. He tells viewers he made the film to distract himself from shooting himself in the head. This was one of several mentions he made to suicide.

While I have a deep appreciation for Burnham’s many artistic talents, I must admit that I was not completely blown away by Inside as so many of his critics were. For me, it was an entertaining, thought provoking piece of work that at times, was both disturbing and hilariously funny.