Having been warned by friends and social media, I opted not to purchase popcorn for this viewing and I suggest you don’t either. The nail-biting tenseness of the film is created by the deafening silence that engulfs almost every scene. A group of fully grown men who unfortunately joined me in the cinema last night, did not afford me the same courtesy, as they munched on their popcorn and Snapchat-ed most of their viewing. I took solace in the fact that, if the horrifying monsters that inhabited the post-apocalyptic world in which A Quiet Place was set became a reality, these ignorant cinema-goers would probably be some of the first to go… Alas, I digress – I just wanted to get it off my chest.
Before watching John Krasinski’s third feature-length directorial outing, I didn’t think it was possible to hold your breath for 90 minutes. I was wrong. The atmosphere of this film is set early on, with the first scene employing a beautifully delicate use of sound to immediately force you to physically sit on the edge of your seat – and you don’t sit back again until you see the credits roll 90 minutes later. With touchingly emotive performances from the whole cast (albeit 6 characters throughout and 4 main cast members) the film comfortably holds your attention from start to finish, which is strange considering the number of spoken words. I estimate this number must be less than 200 and, to put that in perspective, The Wolf of Wall Street contained the “F” word alone, 569 times.
Krasinski has surely cemented his place in Hollywood as a rising talent as he has expertly weaves together and impressively directs, co-writes and stars in A Quiet Place. The pacing and script were hard to fault and the cinematography a joy to behold, but the shining triumph of this film is the casting – in particular Millicent Simmonds who really impresses in her role as Regan. Rating highly with audiences and critics alike is a true testament to this films success and indeed, how far the horror genre has come in the past few years. Although there’s still some stinkers (see Annabelle), A Quiet Place can sit proudly next to the other films that have paved the way for its box office prowess (see Get Out).
If I’m honest, I didn’t expect to enjoy this film as much as I did. And, despite some obvious plot holes, it’s my favourite film of 2018 so far. A must see for thrill-seekers and film buffs alike.