Horror movies are something I’ve always cherished. I was practically raised on the old Universal monster movies, but I’ve unfortunately grown up in a time where the studios value box office numbers over substance. That being said, there have been some very intriguing and revolutionary horror films over the past few years, contributing to something that can only be described as a horror film revolution. A Quiet Place stars John Krasinski and Emily Blunt as Lee and Evelyn Abbot, a couple with two children living in an apocalyptic wasteland ravaged by monsters with ultra-sensitive hearing. They must communicate with sign language, walk with bare feet, and do their best to survive the creatures, who, to the best of the Abbots’ knowledge, cannot be killed.
This is a truly amazing film. I loved it from start to finish. However, there is one major flaw that pops up continuously throughout the movie that is truly an annoyance and prevents it from being perfect. This issue is the predictability. There were moments where I wondered what would happen next and, sure enough, the exact thing I thought was going to happen did. With that in mind, though, even with scenes where you know something is going to happen, you are afraid for the characters and hope they survive.
Real-life couple Blunt and Krasinski make a highly realistic couple, that, for the moments that they are with each other, show true chemistry and emotional value together. Their performances are easy highlights, especially in one scene near the end where Blunt breaks down and remembers a tragic occurrence that she could’ve easily prevented. The duo’s facial expressions and dialogue are beautifully conveyed and show a surprising amount of depth.
Portraying their children are Millicent Simmonds and Noah Jupe, the latter being featured in last year’s Wonder and making a true emotional impact on me. Both of their characters in this movie have their highs and lows, which isn’t that much of a shock. Their best moments, though, come with their interactions with the parents. They each have a scene that shows their potential as future stars, showing the audience how much emotion can be delivered by actors as young as they are.
The monsters are, ultimately, very unsettling and disturbing. The film, unfortunately, loses some potential for a more unnerving experience, as a result of its PG-13 rating, but the monsters that haunt the family are pretty darn freaky. A mix between the Demogorgon’s from Stranger Things and the Clickers from The Last of Us, the scariest aspect of them is not their appearance. It’s how little hope they have left the world, and how fast they can snatch you up. You make a single sound and these things will snatch you up in an instant. Utterly terrifying.
The ending leaves a setup for an obvious sequel, but even though the idea of a follow-up is nothing short of common nowadays, I feel that Krasinski and the cast will be smart about a sequel. If they keep up the work that they’ve done here, providing emotionally driven performances and smart, restrained scares that actually work, it already has my money. This is a highly enjoyable and unsettling entry into the horror genre that will soon be hailed as a modern classic.
A Quiet Place stars Emily Blunt, John Krasinski, Millicent Simmonds, Noah Jupe, Cade Woodward. Directed by John Krasinski.