A Quiet Place Movie Review

Updated: May 12, 2019, 12:30 IST | Johnson Thomas | Mumbai

John Krasinski's A Quiet Place basically exploits Dysfunctional American family life for its genre tropes- marrying traditional genre fixations with modernist atmospheric takes.

A Quiet Place

A Quiet Place
A; Drama, Horror, Thriller

Cast: John Krasinski, Emily Blunt, Noah Jupe, Millicent Simmonds, Cade Woodward
Director: John Krasinski

John Krasinski's 'A Quiet Place,' is an original horror-genre feature set in the dystopian future where sightless carnivorous alien creatures that hunt by sound, take control of major American cities. The film basically exploits Dysfunctional American family life for it's genre tropes- marrying traditional genre fixations with modernist atmospheric takes.

The film's opening scene, which takes place approximately three months after the takeover by the alien creatures, has the Abbott family—Lee (Krasinski) and his wife, Evelyn (Emily Blunt), along with their three children—scrounging for supplies in an abandoned supermarket. They know they have to stay quiet, talk in sign language etc. but Lee and Evelyn are irresponsible when it comes to their children – who are allowed to wander around and pick up whatever they want in a place which is overflowing with glass items, toys that make noise and other risk-laden objects. So it's no wonder that the youngest kid(Cade Woodward), who is allowed to trail the family on their trek to their farmhouse, is the one to pick up a noisy toy and at the opportune moment, turn it on. Lee reads the writing on the wall and runs to save his little one but it's already too late. Thereafter the family is plagued with guilt pangs and the oldest, a pre-teen girl, Regan, who is also deaf, is the one more severely hit by it. She is resentful and feels unloved while her parents and surviving sibling Marcus (Jupe) grapple with their own demons. A year later the Abbots, have learnt to survive and beat the odds but are on constant alert and trying new frequencies to keep the alien marauders out. After all that pussyfooting though, Lee gets his wife pregnant and this in fact, allows for some more heart-wrenching tension and thrills.

For the family now, it's not only about surviving against all odds, it's also about rebuilding their lives from scratch and learning to live happily enough despite the strain of being on constant alert. There's not much logic in what transpires in generic horror films and the same is true here. Of course, if Lee had been cautious enough he could have prevented his son from becoming alien fodder and also pre-empted the birth of a new baby. But that was not to be. Instead, Krasinski builds up the tension through beautifully observant atmospheric cinematography by Charlotte Bruus Christensen, incisively-sharp editing by Christopher Tellefsen, a largely environmental background score by Marco Beltrami and amazingly inventive sound design, that keeps us intensely aware and involved in the fraught situation. It's a darkly told tale of survival, built up in steady progression to a scream-worthy precipice of emotion and fears. The performances are bang-on, especially Emily Blunt, whose malleable expressiveness allows for stronger attachment. Despite it's few aberrations, 'A Quiet Place' is a stand-out horror feature because it abstains from the typical jump-scares and hackneyed tropes that abound in genre fare.

Watch A Quiet Place Trailer

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