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Thursday, December 27, 2018

Review: A Quiet Place

Director: John Krasinski
Screenplay: Bryan Woods, Scott Beck, John Krasinski
Year: 2018

I decided that the first entrance to the 10th Circle belonged to what I consider to be the best horror movie in 2018: “A Quiet Place”, just in time to celebrate the year’s end. This movie is based in a post-apocalyptic future, in which planet Earth has been invaded by extraterrestrial creatures. These violent creatures rely on their ultra-sensitive hearing to locate and hunt their victims. A family relies on silence to survive this invasion.

Horror movies regularly use every type of sound to create a tense atmosphere and take advantage of this to, at some convenient point (or sometimes inconvenient, depends on how you see it), use some sort of strategy to scare the audience. “A Quiet Place” does the exact opposite, it takes advantage of silence to create a tension that I had never experienced before in a movie. So much so that I avoided moving in my seat so that I didn’t make any sound. Is just that the execution of the ambiance and how the story is carried makes you get into this dynamic of being silent to survive since the first minute, so that any sound around you, even if faint, feels like it’s your death sentence.  This section is accompanied by great visuals, that contributes in a good way to the atmosphere of the plot.

I had a lot of curiosity with this movie since promotion for it started once I saw that the director and lead actor was John Krasinski, who went to stardom with his character of Jim Halpert in the comedy series “The Office”. I was intrigued to see how he was going to make that character transition from a funny character in a love drama to a family man fighting for his survival and that of his family, and he managed to do it in a great way. In a movie were dialog is very limited, body language has a lot of weight, which puts a lot of responsibility in actors. Krasinski, as well as Emily Blunt (“Edge of Tomorrow”, “Into the Woods”), his wife in the movie and in real life, and Millicent Simmonds (Wonderstruck) and Noah Jupe, who play the parts as their sons, all do an exceptionally good job.

Regarding the screenplay, I consider that presenting the plot always from the perspective of some family member, which helps you sink into the story easier, was on target. For example, the origin or purpose of the creatures is never explained, something unknown for the family. Besides some questionable decisions by the main characters or some things that didn’t make much sense, the screenplay is solid. In my experience, I got into the plot dynamic from the first minute, and I think this was the purpose.

In a nutshell, besides some weak spots in the screenplay, this movie exceeded my expectations. The debut of John Krasinski as a horror movie director I think was a success, and the cast that accompanied him did an excellent work, which is reflected in the final product. Even though it seems unlikely that Krasinski returns to another horror movie given his history as an actor and director, and because he himself has stated not being a fan of horror movies, I will save my hope and high expectations in case it happens.

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