Saturday, May 19, 2018

A Quiet Place (2018)

Director: John Krasinski
Notable Cast: John Krasinski, Emily Blunt, Millicent Simmonds, Noah Jupe, Cade Woodward

Being a parent is hard. It’s filled with drama and horror in equal measure with love and wonder. It is unlike anything else I’ve ever tried, and I’ve tried a lot of stuff. One unavoidable fact of family life is that while it is many things, it is always loud. Whether a baby is crying, a toddler is whining/screaming, or an older child is having a shouting match with a sibling, a parent, or themselves, there is rarely an escape from the flood of sound that accompanies domesticity. The constant assault of this sound is already a point of anxiety for parents, if not because of the current situation (cough-we don’t need to inform the checker why I’m a boy but thanks anyway toddler) than from the unrelenting stimuli that are as exhausting as they are raucous.

So help me if you ask for anything else today you’re going to die.
Now picture a world where sound equates to quick and painful death. Suddenly getting your kid to stop talking and go to sleep becomes less of an agitant and more of a necessity. This narrative is crafted with careful and masterful care in what will quickly become one of the defining horror films of our generation.

I can honestly say that I’ve only ever seen one other film that was as poignant for me as a parent as A Quiet Place. It holds good company, as The Babadook is its only real point of comparison for familial heroics.

When this was announced, all I could think was how odd it was that Jim from The Office was making a scary movie. With the meteoric rise of Jordan Peele’s debut with Get Out, horror is getting a fresh infusion of talent with comedic roots with welcome reception from audiences and critics alike.

This infusion has led to fresh takes on arguable the most cliché prone genre of cinema. In case you haven’t heard, this movie doesn’t have a lot dialogue. This challenge of telling 90% of a story (estimate, I didn’t actually count the minutes) without speech is a gauntlet thrown at the feet of actors and cinematographers alike.

This duo is amongst the best I’ve seen since Silence of the Lambs.
They answered the challenge with all the quiet resolve of a Hitchcock based slap in the face.
John Krasinski and Emily Blunt’s chemistry is greater than I have seen in recent history, reaching to the core of both marital and parental conflict. The depth of the portrayal of their relationship is striking, augmented by the lack of dialogue.

Based on number of appearances in horror films, corn may be the most terrifying vegetable.

The children are the greatest surprise in this film. Millicent Simmonds is actually deaf in real life, so living in a world without sound was familiar territory for her. Noah Jupe is her foil as the two navigate their tween existence in a twisted apocalypse.

While the acting was impeccable, the true strength of this film lies in its writing and breathtaking execution. Krasinski left himself no safety net. Embracing the Hitchcock-Shyamalan school of thought, he uses minimalism as a weapon of mass consternation to inflict cerebral panic in place of the jump scares that could have easily dominated this film. The rural aesthetic brings a resonant melancholy to the picture, painting in broad stokes that allow the more terrifying moments to pop.

The relationships give this movie the drive that it needs to capitalize on its wealth of suspense.

The apocalyptic vehicle carries more routine narratives that will feel hauntingly familiar. Teenage angst, navigation of gender roles, and balancing relationships with multiple children offer footholds that may leave you more uncomfortable than the creatures on screen. This effective use of a horror vehicle is part of what makes the genre (and cinema as a whole) one of the most cathartic art forms at our disposal.

Don’t miss this film. See it in theatres if you can, but make sure you see it. If nothing else, it will add some perspective to the screaming children that we’re all surrounded with at some point.

 Written By Alex Gerrish


  1. 123 movies - I'm gonna admit the first trailer they released of this movie actually made it look really good and I was genuinely excited to see this movie but then they released the second trailer and this is where the hype died for me because in the first trailer they didn't show the creature at all so the mystery is what made it scary, as for the second trailer it showed the creature at some points and then the sense of mystery was lost so then I was no longer excited, so the movie was ruined for me before it was even released, then came the actual viewing of the movie and by god was it boring, it took so long for a lot of things to happen and it's not like they used those spaces of time for anything useful, the overall story was bland and predictable some key events only relied on coincidence, I also thought with the title A Quiet Place they'd actually use the silence to their emotional advantage but they didn't the random additions of music to certain scenes really lost it for me in the movie making me sigh to be honest my reaction to everything in the movie was a sigh. going back on seeing to much of the creature, the further through the movie you get the more you see if it which every time I saw it on screen I began laugh more and more, that was another reaction I had throughout the movie, I kept laughing at how stupid a lot of the factors of the movie seemed. I'm not gonna blame the actors for this they all done a great job it's just the movie had a great concept but didn't use it very well. But yes I am very surprised at this movies high rating I think it could have been better if they stuck to the sense of mystery.
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