By Frank Portillo
With its unique use of sound and silence, “A Quiet Place” is a thrilling roller coaster ride of emotion that all movie lovers should experience.
Starring John Krasinski, who also directed the film, and his wife Emily Blunt, the story follows a family as they try to survive mysterious creatures in a post apocalyptic world that attack and kill people who make any sound.
With the threat of death, survivors in the world are forced to use sign language and try to engage in activities such as hunting and cooking without making audible noises.
This can be especially tricky, however, for a family expecting a child and a young daughter who is deaf.
The film’s quiet tone is set within the first ten minutes as the family experiences tragedy during the early days of their new livelihood.
The first sound doesn’t come until the ten minute mark, when the audience first experiences what’s at stake.
The silent atmosphere in the film extends into the audience, adding to the experience.
With the film mostly silent, loud noises are heavily emphasized so that they make the jump scares a lot more effective.
Use of silence also allows the audience to connect with the characters on a more personal level and the intriguing story grabs viewers’ attention for the full runtime of 90 minutes.
Instead of focusing on the origin of the creatures, screenwriters Scott Beck, Bryan Woods and Krasinski crafted an incredibly dramatic story that focuses on the Abbott family and how they navigate the world that they live in.
The audience goes on an emotional journey with these well-written characters.
“The Office” alum Krasinski shines in both the co-lead role and his direction of the project.
The high stakes of the world created is perfectly realized by Krasinski in his performance and direction of the young actors, who also deliver great performances.
Blunt is perfectly cast as the mother-to-be, who does whatever it takes to keep her family safe.
Known for portraying strong female characters, her role in this film is no exception.
The chemistry between the two actors is beautiful and adds to the emotion of the film, especially in the intimate moments between the two life partners, who are focused on keeping their family alive.
The young actors in the film also deliver great performances.
Millicent Simmonds plays the daughter of the family who is also deaf.
Her inclusion in the world adds to the suspense and uniqueness of the film.
In a great decision by Krasinski, when she is the focus of the scene the audio is muted, putting the audience in her shoes.
Her connection to the tragedy early in the film allows Simmonds to develop an intriguing character who serves as one of the emotional ties.
Her performance, along with Krasinski’s, will have audience members become emotional.
Grossing an estimated $50.2 million in its opening weekend, “A Quiet Place” had the second biggest box office opening of the year behind Marvel’s “Black Panther,” and boasts a score of 96 percent on Rotten Tomatoes.
This is certainly a film to be experienced on the big screen, with the sound system of the movie theaters as opposed to waiting for the digital or physical release to view at home.
By the time the film ends, audience members will want more of this universe.
The prospect of another film set in the same universe seems likely given Beck’s and Woods’ comments in an interview with Fandango in which they teased the possibility of further exploration of their creation.
“A Quiet Place” is rated PG-13 for terror and some bloody images.