A Quiet Place
Real-life husband and wife John Krasinski and Emily Blunt team up onscreen for the first time in this horror.
A horror is not something you would expect John Krasinski, best known for the U.S. version of The Office, to direct, co-write and star in, let alone a genre you would ever see his wife Emily Blunt in, but once you see A Quiet Place you quickly understand why they chose it.
Set in a not-too-distant dystopian future, people are being hunted by blind creatures that use their hyper-hearing to track their victims.
Civilization has been practically wiped-out and those still alive must stay as quiet as possible at all times to survive.
Blunt and Krasinski play parents Evelyn and Lee, who lost their youngest son early on because he made too much noise. Every day is a fight for survival on their farm with their other children, daughter Regan (Millicent Simmonds), who is deaf, and Marcus (Noah Jupe).
They have set up their home to make as little noise as possible - doors stay open, underground bunkers are made, and they walk around barefoot - and use sign language to communicate.
The family have adapted to this new way of life, with their daily routine sorted, but matters get more complicated with the impending arrival of their new baby.
Although it is scary, A Quiet Place does not rely on cheap jump scares or shallow thrills to terrify its audience.
It is much more clever than that. Krasinski spends time building up the setting, characters and relationships, so when the creatures arrive, you care about what happens to these people.
Although slow burning in the beginning, the tension builds and builds to a point where you can feel it in your body, and once the creatures arrive at Evelyn and Lee’s home, the action becomes relentless as the scares come thick and fast
The premise of the movie is based on sound, so it’s no surprise that the sound design is excellent.
The audience becomes painfully aware of how much noise a footstep makes, for example, and cringe whenever somebody drops something. The pulsating beat that comes in when the creatures approach only adds to the sense of foreboding.
Blunt does a lot of the emotional heavy lifting and her performance is the most impressive, but there really is no weak link in the cast.
This isn't just a well-crafted horror; it’s a well-crafted film in general.
Horrors rarely present viewers with fleshed-out characters but all four are well defined, the plot is captivating, and the dialogue is minimal but smart, meaning viewers are emotionally connected to the story and care more when something tragic happens.
It’s refreshing to see a horror made as well as this, and perhaps this is down to Krasinski being a newcomer to this genre and bringing his drama background with him.
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