Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Film Review - A Quiet Place

Day 89 flashes up on the screen. a family is moving quietly through a drug store in a deliberate quiet manner. The focus falls on the daughter who appears to be the eldest (Millicent Simmonds) is deaf as evidenced by muffled sounds when the perspective switches to her point of view. The family gets medicine for their middle son Marcus (Beau Abbott) while the youngest son Beau (Cade Woodward) picks up a toy space shuttle. Dad Lee ( John Krasinski) who also wrote and directed the film takes away the toy removes the batteries warning that it will make too much sound.  The barefooted fail begin the treck home then Beau pulls out the space shuttle that begins to flash and make noise. Lee turns to rush towards his youngest son as the bushes move a monster appears sweeping the young child off the road to his death.

In this near future world, Earth's population has been significantly reduced by monsters that are extremely fast lethal and rely completely on sound. You can walk right by them if you're quiet but if you step on a branch you're savaged and killed. Writer-director star Joe Krasinski presents a tale that draws you in from the opening scene. The Abbots are at an advantage as their oldest daughters deafness means that the entire family is comfortable and prolific in sign language. Sound and music also play a rage part in setting the tone for the film as does the special effects department for crafting the look, movement, and mechanics of the monsters. The goal is simply to protect your children especially given what occurred earlier in the opening sequence.

Krasinski's real-life wife Emily Blunt leads the cast as the pregnant matriarch Evelyn when the story skips ahead to day 473 after the horrid opening events. As the audience sees that she is pregnant the mind automatically races: how is she going to give birth at home in quiet, don't' babies cry won't that attract the monsters. Millicent Simmons continues her string of break to performances having last been seen in Wonderstruck. Regan blames herself for the death of her younger brother having given him back the confiscated toy. She is frustrated her deafness and her dads' repeated attempts to craft a hearing aid that will work. Regan feels that she is more capable that her younger reluctant brother Marcus but her dad continues to favour him. British young actor Noah Jupe is effective as the fearful middle child that is being groomed as the next man up. He doesn't want the responsibility is scared of making any sound and reliant on an ever scarcer supply of medicine.

A Quiet Place is a horror film that travels over fresh untrodden ground. The ensemble cast does not put a step out of place backed by a simple yet effective script and a crisp 90 minute run time. This is one where audience members can effect your movie-going experience. They have to buy in early, be quiet or your suspension of believe will be shattered. It's a breath of fresh air that challenges your senses that I can highly recommend.

*** 1/2 Out of 4.

A Quiet Place | John Krasinski | 2018 | U.S.A. | 90 minutes.

Alien, Silence, Sign Language, Deafness, Hearing Aid, Pregnancy, Childbirth, Short Wave, Grain Silo.