A Quiet Place

***SPOILER WARNING***
The following article contains spoilers from this point on.

A post-apocalyptic horror movie, A Quiet Place stars John Krasinski and Emily Blunt. When blind but ultra-sensitive hearing creatures start to attack and destroy civilization with every sound that they hear, they do whatever it takes to keep their children safe.  The family must remain quiet or risk being hunted and killed by these creatures.

This movie isn’t that long at around an hour and thirty minutes — a good length for this movie and finishes right where it needs to. The main story was the family trying to survive. I wished that I saw more of what happened to others and wanted to know more about the origins of the creatures, but I was satisfied with the overall movie. The surviving family consisted of Lee, Evelyn, Regan, and Marcus. There was another child named Beau, who was killed at the beginning of the movie. Lee, trying to keep his family safe and Evelyn caring for her children while getting ready for the birth of her fourth child. Regan, Lee’s daughter, is partly responsible for her brother being killed when she gives a space shuttle toy back to him that he wanted after his dad said no to Beau. Regan felt regret and thinks her dad holds her responsible for what she had done. When the kids are in danger, and Lee sacrifices himself to save his kids at the end, Lee reminded his daughter that he always loved her in sign language, even if she felt indirectly responsible for killing her brother and thought her dad did as well. The only story that felt more like a plot device was Evelyn’s being pregnant. I didn’t understand in a world full of sound and creatures, why give birth to a baby that all it can do is cry and make noise? It just felt like a way to bring the creatures into the home and threaten her and the family. Was it an accidental pregnancy? There wasn’t much with Marcus. He just felt there and didn’t add anything other than being scared. Either way, I was satisfied with the story arc for these characters.

The film looks like post-apocalyptic towns in movies I’ve seen before. The abandoned city, in the beginning, looked great. But that’s all we got to see in terms of scenery and locations. A lot of the film shows the family’s home and the woods. I don’t even know where they lived or where the setting of the film was. I did like the isolation of the family as it kept the story and focused on them surviving. There is a scene where you get to see other fires light up around Lee, making it think that others are nearby and out there, but it isn’t explained.

Sound is the central theme for this movie. The monsters can’t see or smell and hunt their victims by the sound that they make. It comes off like a type of sonar, where even the smallest sound can attract them from miles away. I liked the sound mixing in the movie. Mostly ambient nature noises you see and hear when walking on a nature trail. It gave a sense of eerie calm that I’ve experienced when I go outside. I live on a pretty high elevation, and sometimes it can get real quiet outside with no noise. I can’t explain how or why it does this, but it does happen. There were times when you didn’t hear much. Maybe the rustle of the fire, running water, or humming of electricity. There were only five or so minutes of spoken dialogue in the movie. Not being able to tell a story with hardly speaking was risky, but it works.

The rest of the dialogue is done through sign and body language. I didn’t know at the time, but the actress that played Regan, Lee’s daughter, is deaf. Millicent Simmonds lost her hearing due to a medication overdose as a baby. The opening scene when Lee is running across the bridge, trying to save Beau was great. It’s revealed that Regan didn’t know her brother put the batteries back in the space shuttle toy. She and the sound were in complete silence. Then there was focused on her and her brother playing with the toy. She saw her dad run towards her to the other end of the bridge and her brother was in peril. A great scene, I thought.

I liked the look of the creature. To me, it combined the Necromorphs from Dead Space with the Lickers or something from the Resident Evil series, with a hint of clickers from The Last of Us. I had a lot of video game monsters on my mind while watching this. A side note, John Krasinski looked like he could be a young Joel from The Last of Us. I couldn’t get a clear image of them, but here are photos showing off Joel and Lee.

Can Anyone else see it?  If not, I tried.

The idea of the creatures was great but had questionable elements that I didn’t understand. They couldn’t see but had reasonably good accuracy when attacking and moving. They moved around like how I would believe a blind but good listening creature can. I understand those last two points. But they came off as extreme librarians demanding silence. It seems that they only attack people, animals, and things that made a lot of loud noise? What they choose to attack seemed like whatever bothered them. There was a scene where Lee and his son go to a river and get fish. With the amount of noise that the river was generating, why didn’t weren’t the creatures attacking and slashing the water? The creatures could also hear screams from miles away, but couldn’t hear the humming of electric bulbs and tell the family was nearby? It felt like a pick and choose what they chose to attack. They didn’t attack the family or come running at the beginning of the movie when birds were cawing in the town making noise, but hear glass breaking miles away. I also don’t think that they need food to survive. I don’t recall seeing them eating the victims that they kill, just swiping and killing them. Did anyone else pick up on this? The monsters are also brought down by a type of feedback. It’s similar to when you put a microphone next to a speaker. This weakness was revealed whenever a creature got close to Regan’s hearing device. Not that visible on a solution, but I’m surprised that no one in that world thought of that way to bring them down.

I heard that a sequel is in the works. I don’t know what else would be left to tell other than where the creatures in the film came from and others coping and dealing with the creatures. I found out a detail that the creature might have come from space. A newspaper article in the basement of the family house mentions, “A meteor hits Mexico with the force of a nuke.” There is the rest of the world out there that the film didn’t seem to mention. The only sort of brief communication was attempted when Lee was trying to contact the outside world with Morse Code. I also read that the writers had a plan to make this into a Cloverfield movie originally. In a way, I can see this film crossing over to that movie series. These films do have aliens that attack Earth and are distributed by Paramount Pictures, but they are two seemingly different movie aliens.

Thank you for Reading. Check out more of my blog posts at: www.tommoscato.com. 

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I'm from and living in North East Pennsylvania (NEPA). I break away from the 7-5 full-time job life I live, by going to movies, playing video games, trying new activities, and looking for ways to do more other than eat, sleep, work, repeat.

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