This 2018 asks its characters to be very, very quiet.

They’re being hunted.

Title: A Quiet Place

Cast, Crew, and Other Info:

Directed by John Krasinski
Written by Bryan Woods, Scott Beck, John Krasinski

Emily Blunt as Evelyn Abbott
John Krasinski as Lee Abbott
Millicent Simmonds as Regan Abbott
Noah Jupe as Marcus Abbott
Cade Woodward as Beau Abbott
Leon Russom as Old Man

Available at Amazon.

Premise:

Creatures who stalk their prey by sound alone have eliminated much of the world’s humans and animals. In an obscure corner of America, a family tries to hold together in a world where they cannot make a sound.

High Points:

We have a very well-acted horror film that makes the most of its premise, and opens a number of conversations about why this family, struggling in a silenced world, resonates with so many people.

Low Points:

I accept the sudden, inexplicable presence of these creatures, because that’s how horror movies work. In return, the movie should play by its own rules. A Quiet Place, in particular, tries to be realistic within the context of its fantastic premise. Those things established, it seems a stretch that the monsters’ particular weakness would not have been discovered early on, and that a larger segment of humanity would not have already turned it against them.

The Scores:

Originality: 5/6 We’ve had a number of apocalyptic horror movies, but few have been so inventive in the handling of their premise. The family must cope with day-to-day survival, and the advancing danger presented by Evelyn’s pregnancy.

I really liked the way that Regan’s deafness works in the film. The family already knew how to sign, giving them an advantage, but the child’s profound hearing impairment means she does not know when she’s in the presence of danger—in the form of a sound.

And then there’s the ending.

Effects: 6/6 A combination of effects creates a corner of a devastated world, and the monsters that have wrought the destruction.

Story: 4/6

Acting: 6/6 The cast—which includes a number of child actors—do extremely well.

Production: 5/6 The film is well-produced, though no movie has ever truly shown what our civilization would look like after months of abandonment.

Emotional Response: 5/6 A Quiet Place has been peopled with credible characters, inventive elements, and some familiar horror tropes. The combination works very well most of the time.

Overall: 5/6

In total, A Quiet Placereceives 36/42.

September 30: Lemora: A Child’s Tale of the Supernatural (JD)

October 6: Suspiria (Alex)
October 7: The Seventh Victim (JD)

October 13: Friday the 13th-a “Make Me Watch It” Podcast (Blaine)
October 14: Hereditary (JD)

October 20: Hausu (Alex)
October 21: Eye of the Devil (JD)

October 27: A Quiet Place (JD)
October 28: Alone in the Dark (JD)

October 31: Halloween 2018 (JD)
Return of the Living Dead (JD)