A Quiet Place

GoMovieReviews Rating:

Rated: MA Quiet Place

Directed by: John Krasinski

Produced by: Michael Bay, p.g.a. Andrew Form, p.g.a. Brad Fuller, p.g.a.

Story by: Bryan Woods & Scott Beck

Screenplay by: Bryan Woods & Scott Beck and John Krasinski

Starring: Emily Blunt, John Krasinski, Noah Jupe, Millicent Simmonds and Cade Woodward.

To put it lightly: A Quiet Place is a horrifically quiet family drama.

And I say drama as there’s two layers to this film: how the old familiar wound of guilt effects a family and the way aliens with supersonic hearing can tear any living creature into pieces, seemingly driven by a mission to exterminate.

The film is made simply, staying with Abbott family; husband, Lee (John Krasinski) and wife Evelyn (Emily Blunt) doing everything they can to protect their young children after the devastating arrival of aliens 89 days previous to the opening scene.

The only way to survive is to stay quiet.

The audience is shown again and again what happens when the creatures hear, so there’s this constant tension that doesn’t let go for the entire film.

An unpretentious film, with the focus on the Abbott family and their struggle to survive the everyday, I was on the edge the whole time, jumping in fright more than once (not usual for me), living the terror right alongside pregnant Evelyn (need I say more about trying to keep quiet while giving birth) and Lee and the kids, young kids brought up in a world of silent terror.

What really got me was how Lee and Evelyn tried to keep their family safe and happy – trying to be the best parents in the worst circumstances.  So there’s this emotional attachment because of the outstanding performances of Blunt, who continues to amaze, showing absolute terror but controlled through hard-won courage, and the drive shown by Krasinski as the husband and father to protect his family: heart breaking.

It’s not often I cry in a suspense horror, but this film had all the best of an edge-of-your-seat-scare-fest with a driving soundtrack (Marco Beltrami) and nasty killing, sharp-fanged monsters alongside the reality of a family trying to survive in the worst of circumstances.

The whole cast was just so believable, you could see the fear in their eyes.

And because the characters couldn’t make sound or speak, the music and facial expression to convey emotion was just so much more important – the quiet to the complete absence of sound when focussed on the eldest child, daughter Regan (Millicent Simmonds), from her perspective of being deaf changed the whole feeling of the film, like the silence was used to draw you further in so when there was a clash or sudden scare, you could really feel it.

Superficially, a simple story; but the mechanics and thought put into the presentation of the film, the soundtrack, the drama of the family dynamic shown in the facial expressions and eyes of the cast pushed the suspense to maximum.

An impressive film from start to finish.

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The Girl on the Train

GoMovieReviews Rating:

Rated: MA15+The Girl on the Train

Directed by: Tate Taylor

Screenplay by: Erin Cressida Wilson

Based on: ‘The Girl on the Train’ by Paula Hawkins

Starring: Emily Blunt, Rebecca Ferguson, Haley Bennett, Justin Theroux, Luke Evans, Allison Janney, Edgar Ramírez; Lisa Kudrow.

Alcoholism, restlessness; hurt – The Girl on the Train is a film about the possibilities, the capabilities of someone lost.

The focus of the film surrounds the mystery of the main character, Rachel Watson (Emily Blunt) watching the world go by through the window of a train.

Sure, Rachel’s got her problems: she drinks, she lies, she has blackouts, and she wants what she can’t have.  And the audience, watching the world with her, sympathise: her heart’s in the right place – right?

But the slow reveal of Rachel’s unravelling makes us wonder just what she’s capable of.

And there lies the mystery.  What is really happening here?  Just how lost is Rachel?

The Girl on the Train is a movie of perspectives.  Of what people see compared to what goes on behind closed doors.  This is a film about what’s revealed to the audience and when.  And I think the mystery was handled well by director Tate Taylor (who won a BAFTA Award for best adapted screenplay for, Help (2011)).

I’m just going to say it – I found the book a slow read.  So for once and a rarity for me to say, the condensing of the story into a movie length narrative made for a more dramatic reveal.  The film concentrated on the main thrust of the story, of Rachel, of her illness, about her blackouts; about what actually happened on that fateful day.

No one can say that Emily Blunt can’t act, and indeed, her acting kept The Girl on the Train firmly on track.  Blunt is phenomenal in Sicario (2015), one of my favourites and I recently re-watched Looper (2012) – another fantastic movie starring Blunt.  I like her authentic, down-to-earth style and think she’s fast becoming one of the greats.  And her performance here is to be commended.

Also to note was the performance of Haley Bennett as the saucy Megan Hipwell and Justin Theroux as Rachel’s ex, Tom Watson.

In conclusion, I have to say there’s no real punch here and I wasn’t on the edge-of-my-seat, but The Girl on the Train is an absorbing mystery, shown well.

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