Some terrible monsters have attacked all over the earth striking at anything that makes too much noise. We follow one family that has found a way to survive together, but this family, like all real families, has some problems. They’re trying to live as normal a life as possible given the circumstances.
“A Quiet Place” is often classified as a Horror Thriller, but I see it as more of a Horror Drama. It does have the suspense of a thriller, but none of the mystery. If you come in looking for the mystery you find in great thrillers like “The Bourne Identity”, “Minority Report”, or “The Sixth Sense” you’ll find a pretty shallow, mostly nonsensical situation that has a resolution that makes you shake your head thinking “someone would have figured that out before we got to this point”. So don’t do that. Much like “Jaws” isn’t really about hunting a big shark, “A Quiet Place” isn’t about figuring out how to fight monsters. It’s about a family dealing with trauma and hardship wrapped in a horror world. And it does a good job of that, portraying a fairly realistic family dynamic.
I’m generally not a fan of horror. I find most of the stories silly and I get little enjoyment from jump scares and frightening scenes. “A Quiet Place” is more like Horror light. There is lot’s of suspense and several scares, but it seems the goal of the film is to make you cry for the family rather than scream in fright and I believe it succeeds.
The violence is infrequent and not gory, but is presented in an emotional and painful way. Definitely some nightmare fuel here. There is nothing I would consider inappropriate sexual content and no course language which is certainly a rarity in the genre. With a little different editing you could probably make it a PG movie.
If war and monster movies are great demos for the power of your home theatre, “A Quiet Place” is a demo for the subtlety of your surround sound. As the name suggests this is a relatively quiet film that consistently uses the surround speakers to place you in the world with dripping water, rustling leaves, and breezes blowing by. You may be tempted to turn the volume up, but be careful with that, because when it’s loud it’s loud. All of this is what makes the suspense work and jumps work.
“A Quiet Place” is a good movie that is much better than most horror movies and one that will appeal to those not terribly interested in horror. I give it a 7/10. I’m unsure how young an audience would like it, but I wouldn’t be too concerned about this being shown at a young teenager’s sleepover or halloween party.
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Patrick Boyle: http://www.patrickboyle.ca