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“A Quiet Place”: Sci-fi Horror Done Right

John+Krasinski%27s+%22A+Quiet+Place%22+is+a+rare%2C+quality+horror+movie+with+a+100%25+score+on+Rotten+Tomatoes.+image+courtesy+of+Paramount+Pictures
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“A Quiet Place”: Sci-fi Horror Done Right

John Krasinski's

John Krasinski's "A Quiet Place" is a rare, quality horror movie with a 100% score on Rotten Tomatoes. image courtesy of Paramount Pictures

John Krasinski's "A Quiet Place" is a rare, quality horror movie with a 100% score on Rotten Tomatoes. image courtesy of Paramount Pictures

John Krasinski's "A Quiet Place" is a rare, quality horror movie with a 100% score on Rotten Tomatoes. image courtesy of Paramount Pictures


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By Gus Emerson

After John Krasinski delighted the world with his charming and witty performance as Jim Halpert from “The Office” (U.S. version), he tried his hand at film direction in 2018’s “A Quiet Place,” resulting in the year’s greatest horror film so far.

The nail-biting film starts off bleakly and quietly, to set the tone for the rest of the unforgiving plot. In a post-apocalyptic earth that has been suddenly overrun by fierce monsters, the surviving Abbott family must stay silent as the grave to prevent from being hunted by these creatures㇐who, while blind, hunt with an enhanced sense of sound. If they hear you, they hunt you, and silence is survival.

After suffering a devastating loss in the first act of the movie, the father, Lee Abbott (John Krasinski), must continue to fight every day in order to keep his family safe, all the while never saying a word to his family unless absolutely necessary. However, protecting his wife and children from the terrible sound-hunting “demon things” soon proves difficult when revealed that the mother, Evelyn Abbott (Emily Blunt), is pregnant. The tension immediately crashes through the roof when the audience finds yet another defenseless member of this family to worry about, especially since newborns tend to wail and cry and generally act unsafely during a silent apocalypse.

The plot of this film is both thrilling and compelling with the vast majority of dialogue said through sign language between those of the main cast. It is also important to mention that the actress who plays the daughter, Regan Abbott (Millicent Simmonds), is deaf in real life and sees this movie as an opportunity to promote more disabled moviemakers to the craft. She and her onscreen brother, Marcus Abbott (Noah Jupe), give great performances despite being limited to very few words. In this small cast of outstanding actors, Emily Blunt just barely makes it as the standout character, as Evelyn is fierce in protecting her children however she can, with one more still “on the way.”

While “A Quiet Place” is critically and commercially loved, with a score of 95 percent on Rotten Tomatoes, that does not mean that it is wholly original. Netflix fans might compare the design of the monster’s appearance, movements, and sounds to the “Stranger Things” demogorgon (monster), that is physically identical to this monster except for its uniquely misshapen head. Also, the plot is vaguely reminiscent of the movie “Signs” by M. Night Shyamalan, in which a worldwide alien invasion terrorizes a countryside family of disheartened and disabled survivors, and the creature’s singular weakness is eventually revealed in a decidedly convenient way.

Despite glaring similarities between itself and other monster horror media, “A Quiet Place” manages to feel extremely special and well-made by starring actor and first-time director John Krasinski. Terrifying, heartbreaking, and a brisk 90 minutes of runtime, this horror film stands out as it doesn’t rely on annoying jumpscares to build tension. Instead, it weaves a compelling story and allows the strained silence to make the audience acutely aware of any onscreen sound that may be loud enough for the creatures to hear.

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“A Quiet Place”: Sci-fi Horror Done Right