Director: John Krasinski
Starring: Emily Blunt, John Krasinski, Javier Botet. USA. 1h 30m
John Krasinski’s pensive thriller is designed to make you feel like an active participant of a family who is faced with unreal fears. The camera often swings around the characters making you feel that that your part of the conservation, tagging along as a silent witness.
Much is already been given away in the numerous trailers and it’s very clear to see that this family a living on the edge of a post apocalyptic future where deadly creatures are attracted to the noises we make every day. The origin of these deadly critters isn’t a factor in the movie, it doesn’t matter why they are here or what happened, the families journey now is all that the film concentrates on and for plot reasons only, but if you read clippings that are saved in the families basement you can work out that in 2020 within only 3 months most of the world’s population have been destroyed by large creatures that are attracted to sound and protected by armored skin.
This isolated family have managed to adapt to the terrifying lifestyle although they have young children who don’t understand the full extent of the dangers around them. As the movie opens with a tragedy based around the sound of a child’s toy, this rude and brutal introduction really outlines just how fragile life can be and they have another problem brewing, Evelyn (Blunt) is heavily pregnant and obviously there’s a lot of noise associated with childbirth and having a youngster but they have a trick up their sleeve. In the meantime Regan (Millicent Simmonds), the couples teenage deaf daughter is struggling with guilt for having a hand in the demise of her little brother. While out scouting for supplies the tiny tot Beau is attracted to a rocket ship, his father denies the kid his prize due to fear that it will make too much noise,but Regan retrieves it for him, sadly no one notices that he has the batteries and on the way home he activates the toy and is swiftly taken out by a monster before his father can save him, the family watch on silently.
If they hear you they hunt you
A year later Regan feels like an outcast, her father finds it hard to bond with the girl and locks himself away for hours at a time trying to contact the outside world, while taking his surviving son Marcus out to get fish, they confide in each other, the father admits that he does love his daughter but finds it hard to connect the brother lets him know how isolated she feels and that she constantly blames herself, before they can return Evelyn goes into labour prematurely and they then embark on their toughest struggle as a family.
In terms of the look and feel the movie is exceptional, the camera work makes the viewer a participant and for the most part it’s a family experiencing a quaint life on a farm using sign language but then after one minor accident, the mood instantly changes as the monsters dash in for a kill, this is cleverly enhanced with great acting and intelligent use of a cracking soundtrack. The creatures design while ingeniously invented by Jeffrey Beecroft remains a secret until the end but their presence does create some very nerve racking and tense scenes, but the big reveal adds to this horror drama which is sometimes hard to achieve depending on how much you reveal to the audience but the creepy effect only grows as you see more and more of these dangerous fuckers. With most cinema monsters the cast and often the audience are constantly trying to find a way to kill the monster, but when something seems indestructible then the real fear starts.
John Krasinski, has done an excellent job at writing, directing and acting in this amazing movie, although at every turn there are so many questions, where do the creatures come from, why are they here and are they attracted to the sounds of loud farts? Why does the family struggle so hard to to keep having children in such a harsh environment? Are there any survivors? In all it has its minor faults, for me the biggest is that everything becomes too convenient as things fall into place at the end, but if your able to just put things aside and enjoy the story that’s presents it’s quite a thrilling experience.
With the damning opinion of modern horror being too weak, this one will stand out as being both visually and mentally able to give it’s audience a scare or two as well as something to think about.
Rating 6 /10