Shh ... you'll wake the aliens

Emily Blunt and Millicent Simmonds in A Quiet Place (CNS/Paramount)

A Quiet Place is an American horror film about a family who live in fear of being attacked by alien creatures that attack immediately on hearing sound. Source: ACOFB.

The lead is played by Emily Blunt, who is married to the movie’s director, John Krasinski, who also acts as her husband in the movie.

The film starts on Day 89 on a ravaged Earth. The family live an isolated existence on a farm in the woods, and they struggle to survive against the aliens who live in the forest around them. The creatures who live there have laid waste to human civilisation, and they locate their victims by sound, not sight. To escape attack, the family is forced to live in complete silence, communicating in sign language. All the members of the family are plagued by the terror that the alien creatures bring. Viewers are introduced to the horror by seeing huge claw marks scratched into the wood panels inside the family house. More creatures are revealed, or at least signs of their presence, and as the tension escalates members of the family have to spend every minute of their lives keeping the aliens at bay.

This is not a movie that aims to capture viewers’ attention by scenes of menacing ghosts or apparitions jumping out of the background to repeatedly reveal themselves in startling fashion. The context of dread is revealed “quietly”, almost stealthily, in complete harmony with the plot-line. Everything that seems normal for a family takes on potential threat, because it could cause sound.

Character development in this film is one of its strengths, unusual for horror films. We see the effects of terror on everyday lives, and both parents and children cooperatively learn strategies over time on how best to survive, and grow to understand each other better.

This is a very clever horror movie, impressively directed and acted with well-developed tension.

It is unquestionably a film in the horror genre, with violence and horror predictably on show (should sounds occur), but it is tolerably M, which means the violence is mostly indirect. Essentially, this is a classy horror movie that demonstrates the potential for terror that lies lurking in ordinary events.

– Reviewed by Peter W. Sheehan, ACOFB.

A Quiet Place: Starring Emily Blunt, John Krasinski, Millicent Simmonds, and Noah Jupe. Directed by John Krasinski. Rated M (Horror themes and violence). 90 min.

FULL REVIEW

A Quiet Place (ACOFB)

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