A Quiet Place is directed by John Krasinski. This film stars himself, Emily Blunt, Millicent Simmonds and Noah Jupe. The movie tells the story of a family who live in a world where strange creatures will hunt you if you make a sound. Krasinski also co-wrote the screenplay and stars in it with his real wife Emily Blunt.
Krasinski admitted that he never had any experience with the horror genre before. He never watched horror movies or never acted in one. So why does this movie work? The answer is because it doesn’t focus only on the scares. Krasinski said the reason he did this movie was because it was mainly about family, parenthood and the theme of what you are willing to do to protect your children and it just so happens that they live in this unfortunate reality. He said that only once he established the family and the audience already cared for them would he then focus on the horror. When you care for any character and you see them in grave danger it makes the scene more intense than it already is. This technique works perfectly with this movie, first you care for them, then you are afraid for them.
The first half is basically all about setting up the caring part which then leads to the second half where s*it hits the fan. The movie opens up with a 5-10 minute scene where it establishes why you can’t make any sounds. It makes it very clear why this family and the whole world or what’s left of it is in danger. Don’t worry, it’s not a spoiler. The job of the first act is to carefully set up the second act without being too obvious. Everything comes in to play very subtly. That being said, even though this is a great horror movie, it still can’t quite escape the ‘dumb decision trait’ which most of them do. Not saying this movie is full of them but when they do notice or not notice something it results in some heavy consequences which could’ve easily been avoided.
Now I can’t quite talk a whole lot about the second half of this movie because A LOT of things happen in it and I would have to spoil it which I won’t. As I said a lot of events unfold in the second half, and the great part about this is that they aren’t thrown together all in a span of minutes, they are spaced to leave more tension. Surprisingly this movie was really emotionally charged in some scenes. The film does a really good job of making you feel sorry for them. The things this family goes through are rough and traumatic. To balance the emotional side of the movie there is the horror and suspense which is almost always present. From beginning to end this is a thrill ride. The film does a great job at throwing these characters into the worst situations a world like this could throw at them at increase the intensity level up to high. It really does take it’s concept seriously and it plays with it in a clever way.
Everyone in this film delivers on their performance, everyone. Krasinski and Blunt are excellent especially in the emotional and suspenseful scenes. There is the bathtub scene you’ve seen in the trailer and Blunt gives it her all into that scene. Krasinski even said it was only shot once, making it even more impressive. Obviously they have great chemistry seeing that they are married in real life. Both of them were worried about working with each other for the first time and as you can see it worked out well. Their children are played by Millicent Simmonds and Noah Jupe. Krasinski said he wanted a deaf actress to portray his daughter, he said it would make the experience more authentic which it did. Both Simmonds and Jupe deliver on their performances, for a movie with barely any dialogue they knocked it out of the park, especially in the emotional scenes.
The real question is: “Is it really that scary?”. Well, the answer in yes. As I said it starts from the beginning and it never stops. This is a short movie, it’s only an hour and thirty-five minutes. The second half is very fast-paced. The monsters are really intriguing and they are designed in a clever way. I love how up until basically near half of the second act the monsters are kept in the shadows (not literally). Krasinski masters the “less is more” technique. Whenever they would appear it’s truly frightening. The incredibly fitting score by Marco Beltrami helped as well. The sound design is another character on it’s own. I was watching a video where Krasinski explains and analyses a scene. He shows how important and effective the sound design is for a film like this.
Now I was very disappointed with the audience at my screening. A guy in front of me was playing with his phone for most of the movie and most of the audience spoke over certain scenes. So the audience and their behavior definitely reflect on your experience and your enjoyment.
I can’t really say more unless I get into spoiler filled territory so this is it for the spoiler free review. Overall this film has a unique concept and it plays with it in a very clever way. It’s suspenseful from beginning to end and it actually tugs at your heartstrings a few times. It’s visual flair and amazing score help aid the brilliant performances and writing and take the film to another level. It’s a special film which demands to be seen on the big screen with an audience which respects cinema. This is why I give “A Quiet Place”