Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Have you ever had a creative goal that drives you to complete no matter the supplies or time consumed to complete it? Even if it starts to take a toll on you, for example lack of sleep, alienate friends and the only thing driving you is completing it. Dave Made a Maze Is about a bit scattered brain artist Dave (Nick Thune) who left alone on the weekend by his girlfriend Annie (Meera Rohit Kumbhani) is out the doorknob breaks this start off his project. Dave’s use of various cardboards gives the maze a personality and details and effort the crew put into the film. When Annie returns and sees Dave in the maze, she calls back up his friend Gordon (Adam Busch) who calls in and Harry (James Urbaniak) along with his Boom operator and Cameraman going into the maze to save Dave. While also the call brings more in and then they go journey into the maze and not heeding Dave’s warning. The rescue team searches for Dave and each room they face is unique and booby-traps everywhere.

There is some feeling of childhood wonder that a cardboard box brings out as using your imagination to create something while also using art supplies to give it shape. Or buy a toy for your pet and they play with the box, we don’t want not the flashy doohickey just something simple. Just like  in an episode from the Garfield and friends cartoon. Anyway back to the Maze the deeper the team enters it reality becomes warp everything is alive. I really love that everything inside the Maze is made of cardboard in one scene when mechanizing gears and pumps pumping streams moving the deathtraps. There are cartoony booby-traps of the maze that undermine their danger and prevent it from being another gore fest. Even if the booby-traps are made out of cardboard that does not make them any less than stone or metal. It could be that we use cardboard as a packing material instead of a material that can be melded into a weapon like stone or metal.

Dave is in that moment of transition in his life from a carefree adult into one that has to prioritize what they want and to take care of themselves. When he opens up Dave mentions working at jobs he hates but also his parents still sent him money. You don’t want to be a burden but still need help to get started. I’m close to Dave age and feeling some existential dread about it. The cast draws out more from the characters without it would seem one-dimensional. This is definitely a movie the more you watch you will notice who is in it. James Urbaniak plays Harry with an artistic arrogance as they are in the maze of what to say or delving deeper in a conversation. On my second watch through I realize I remember his voice, from The Venture Bros he is the voice of Dr. Thaddeus “Rusty” Venture.

One thing that threw me off is that one character does not know what a Minotaur is. But that is due pop-culture constant retelling of Greek Myths especially the Daedalus and Minotaur. Everyone remembers the artwork and if one researches enough to know the artist. Which I mean to say in animation or comics there is a reference to a famous painting. Even though we live for so many years through our actions, loved ones and our works. Dave’s maze is a way for him to create some that no one else has done before and to leave an impact. When they have to escape the maze it brings them all together instead of driving them apart. While the walls of the maze are fashioned out of cardboard it gives them a personal touch that give a window into the artist’s mind. But the maze has taken a life and the creator has left it unfinished. I recommend Dave Made a Maze as a must watch that blends horror and comedy, the cast is well known but not too gory to make you squeamish.

Image courtesy of Imdb.com. Can currently be streamed on TubiTV and Amazon.