In his latest attempt to shake off typecasting as the witty and sarcastic heart of The Office, John Krasinski co-writes, directs and stars in the post-apocalyptic, monster-ridden frightfest A Quiet Place.
Set in a world where humanity has been all but decimated by blind, gangly, ferocious creatures (reminiscent of Cloverfield’s main antagonist, but on a far smaller scale), the film centres on the Abbot family’s desperate attempts to live a lifestyle completely devoid of sound, so as to avoid alerting the extremely audio-sensitive beasts – a matter that is sure to become even more difficult with the imminent arrival of the pregnant mother’s (Emily Blunt) newest addition to the family.
A Quiet Place’s foundation as a genre film that highlights silence as its most vital element is a dream come true for fans of modern horror films.
There is rarely a moment of respite from the sustained tension as characters conduct their daily routines at an agonisingly slow pace to avoid treading on creaky floorboards, knocking over a glass, or stepping on fallen leaves. Krasinski masterfully directs these moments – any time a threat to the stillness of the family’s farmyard home is presented, it brings with it an immediate sense of dread of the inevitable horror to come.
Perhaps the film’s biggest strength is that it doesn’t succumb to the cliché of making a horror movie first and telling a story second. The golden rule of storytelling is ‘show, don’t tell’ and the film’s premise lays the perfect foundation to capitalise on this rule. The set design of the farmyard and the family’s house reveals more about these people than any needless exposition; namely who they were before the world ended, and how they have so far survived.
A Quiet Place will keep you on edge right until the final credits roll, and the finale is well worth the heart palpitations endured along the way.
In cinemas: April 5, 2018
Starring: John Krasinski, Emily Blunt, Noah Jupe
Directed by: John Krasinski