A Quiet Place Part II

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

** WARNING – This review contains spoilers from A Quiet Place (2018) — not the current film, but the original that came out three years ago **

At the outset of 2018, no one could have predicted that A Quiet Place — a nearly dialogue-free horror movie with a minuscule $17 million budget — would become a U.S. Top 20 box office hit of the year. It even knocked Steven Spielberg’s much-hyped science fiction adventure Ready Player One out of the #1 position when it was released that April. A Quiet Place would go on to gross considerably more, so another chapter was inevitable. There will likely be a Part III given the success of this entry.

These are the continuing adventures of the Abbott household, a family desperately trying to survive in a post-apocalyptic world inhabited by a race of extraterrestrial monsters. The aliens can’t see, but they’ve got hypersensitive hearing. They attack anything that makes noise. Most of Earth’s human population has been exterminated. If you saw Part 1, all of this is merely a recap. If you haven’t, you should see that one first.

We open with a memorable prelude — a flashback at a baseball game. A flaming comet in the sky announces the aliens’ arrival. They brutally invade the town. John Krasinski returns as director as well as to portray Lee the father. Lee sacrificed his own life during PART I, so the opening prologue has a dual purpose. 1) It allows actor John Krasinski to make a brief appearance and 2) it introduces Lee’s buddy Emmett, (a grizzled-looking Cillian Murphy) who will become an important addition to this new story. Flash forward to the present day. Over a year has passed. Mother Evelyn and her newborn baby, along with daughter Regan, and son Marcus have all survived. They previously learned that the creatures are unable to withstand high-frequency audio feedback. Regan, who cannot hear, uses her hearing aid to produce the sounds that can kill them.

You know what they say: “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Come be entertained by an intense tale that continues the frightening narrative. The introductory installment was a tension-filled nightmare. PART II delivers the same stress and anxiety. However, this one offers a somewhat calmer survival drama that will split off into three separate stories: one concerning Regan and Emmett, the second with son Marcus watching over the baby, and a third featuring mother Evelyn. There’s a sequence In the climax where editor Michael P. Shawver intercuts what’s happening in each timeline, uniting the missions of a trio of concurrent chronologies. The editing masterfully creates unbearable suspense. I loved it.

The greatest horror is not always about the events themselves, but the people they affect. Emotionally compelling performances are what elevates a merely good flick into something great . Emily Blunt is always stellar. Yet she is surprisingly less essential to this account. The MVPs of this production are the children. Millicent Simmonds as deaf daughter Regan and curly-haired Noah Jupe as introverted Marcus are indispensable. Their faces convey all the fear, apprehension, sadness, and relief necessary for us to be invested. Their fully-realized dread is perfectly expressed. The relentless weight of their dilemmas becomes relatable. It’s their achievements that make this adventure so powerful.

05-27-21

7 Responses to “A Quiet Place Part II”

  1. Part one was so good. This one had all the same, intense excitement. I agree, the kids were stellar. Their expressions said so much. 3 1/2 ⭐️

    Like

  2. Just got back from this. Apart from the 50 people (slight exaggeration) who decided to filter into the show late, like post-baseball game sequence late, i had a fantastic time with this. Couldn’t agree more about the kid actors. They have a more profound impact on the story this time around

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    • Coming into a show later is a pet peeve of mine. At the Alamo Drafthouse, they won’t let you enter. I see my movies at the Cinemark and there are like 25 minutes of trailers and ads before a show. It’s really hard to be late at those theaters.

      Liked by 1 person

      • At the very least it just doesn’t make sense from a value standpoint. Why pay high ticket prices and not see the whole movie? Obviously some circumstances are beyond people’s control, but seriously, like 4 or 5 different groups came in late to this. It was head scratching. The show was at 9:15. It’s not that late.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Millicent Simmons really knocked it out of the park. This was such a fun suspenseful movie. We went to a mid-week matinee so there would be as few people as possible, and it was a great experience.

    Liked by 1 person

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