Let me paint a picture for you. You live in a world, where making one loud sound, can lead to your death. Creatures, who are faster, and stronger than you, exist, and they hunt by sound. Now in this situation, would you want to get pregnant, and decide to go through with the term and have the kid?
No! No one would be that dumb. Babies are loud. They are all loud. They are going to cry. You can’t explain to the baby they aren’t allowed to cry because it will attract killer monsters. Have you ever tried to explain something to a baby? I have, and it doesn’t work. The baby just looks at you with a stupid look on its face, BECAUSE IT IS A BABY. Babies don’t even understand English, let alone concepts like staying quiet. There is a 99% chance that baby will not live to see its first birthday.
Yet the characters in this movie decided, sure, let’s have another kid. Our other young son was already killed because he decided to take a toy that makes noise from the store, even though you explained to him why he cannot have it. But he didn’t understand that, so he took the toy, turned it on, and the monsters found and killed him. Which, was obviously going to be what would happen. The fact that kid survived as long as he did is a miracle. I am not criticizing kids.Hell, when I was that age, I would have died in this movie as well. But these characters decide to try again, with another kid? WHY?
A Quiet Place has a great concept, but it is buried under a pile of stupid. It isn’t just the whole having a baby thing in this movie that makes no sense. Every single source of drama and tension in this movie stems from something too dumb to believe. They try to explain that they planned for the baby to be loud, so they made a quiet room to hide the baby. But one, if you can make a room where they cannot hear you, why wouldn’t you just live in that room? Two, the way they make the room sound sealed so the monster can’t hear the baby, is sliding a mattress over the staircase to the basement. Now I am no sound engineer, but I somehow doubt just putting a mattress on the staircase down into this area, would make it soundproof. Three, this is all made moot, by a seemingly random leak, the floods the basement, somehow letting one of the monsters down there. Where did the leak come from? Why set up this situation with a soundproof room, if you are going to immediately undercut it with some random plot device?
There is one plot convenience where a nail comes loose on the stairs. A laundry bag gets snagged, and somehow pulls up a nail. And it becomes so obvious what is going to happen. Emily Blunt’s character steps on it, drops something making a loud crash, and sets forth a series of events that lead to the main tension in the movie. I was cringing as soon as I saw the nail sticking up because this is such a dumb and lazy plot device. Surely there are more clever ways to present a believable scenario where there would be a loud sound, causing the creatures to attack.
There is one point where the father, played by John Krasinski, and his oldest son, are coming back from fishing, and they happen by an old man, who is standing over his wife’s corpse. The man doesn’t want to live life without his wife, so he screams, attracting the monster, which kills him. And that is the scene. Nothing comes of this. It is utterly pointless.
For a movie about silence, it can be obnoxiously loud. Every scare is accompanied by an over the top sound effect. And yea, it made me jump, but it was not scary. Take a movie like Alien as a comparison. In that movie, they used silence to be scary. The silent scenes in that movie, are the scariest scenes in the movie. This movie had that same chance and blew it. They did not need the jump scare cues, but they used them anyway because it is the cheapest way to get audiences worked up.
I know I have been mostly negative, so let me say some positive aspects of this film. Both John Krasinski and Emily Blunt gave strong performances. The younger actors were fine for young actors. They were never distractingly bad, and the young deaf girl was actually somewhat impressive at times. The movie can, at times, be subtle. There are certain things they show us that show they put thought into this movie’s concept. Like how none of the characters wear shoes, or how they will leave sand paths to nullify the sound they make while they walk. These are two smart decisions for characters to make, and the movie never felt the need to explain to us why they did these things. They also have a bunch of plans in case of an emergency to signal each other and to draw the creatures away. A lot of these things, lead us to believe that these characters are smart. The atmosphere in the movie is creepy at times when it decides to actually be the quiet, subtle horror movie it promised and not just a loud jump scare fest.
But these things, make it even more frustrating when dumb plot conveniences crop up. It feels like they wrote themselves into a corner establishing this family as having a well thought out plan, so a series of dumb things needed to happen to cause a problem. With good writing, they could have gotten around this issue. But instead, they decided to write dumb things like the family deciding to bring a child into a world when it makes no sense.
I think Krasinski has potential as a director, there were some impressive things, and he showed potential. But the material he was working with just was not great. The writing was so sub-par. With some more experience, and a better script/ screenplay, he could make a decent movie. Hell, most people already think he made a decent movie. I am just not buying it here. A Quiet Place was a bit of a mess and did not live up to the high praise many others are throwing at it.