A Quiet Place.. SSSSH!!
It’s 2020 and the world has been seemingly been abandoned in one of those post-apocalyptic scenarios for reasons that are not delved into, but I like that it doesn’t try to explain anything in terms of how this whole situation came about, so it can just get on with telling the story, AND in a fairly brief run-time of just 83 minutes before the end credits begin.
I could’ve gone to see this in the cinema, but couldn’t trust people to be quiet in there… especially DJ Kool as he’s always saying, “Let Me Clear My Throat!”, but I digress…
As I watched the opening scene, I thought – why aren’t they wearing shoes? They don’t make a huge amount of noise, and that’s just asking for trouble as you step on something. And what happens if you do ever make a noise? Well, that question will be answered at some point in the film.
Emily Blunt definitely comes out best from this, as she can definitely act, and so I’ll be looking forward to her take on Mary Poppins at Christmas, in Mary Poppins Returns. Both of the children, played by Millicent Simmonds (Wonderstruck) and Noah Jupe (Wonder) are fine, but while I know John Krasinski is Mr Emily Blunt, he cannot act. The directing is fine, but when it comes to Hollywood, he’s spent $17m on this film and it took $333m at the box office, worldwide, so for whatever either of them do next, they can ask the bigwigs to give them a blank cheque for sure.
With a scaled-down score to complement the almost-wordless script, A Quiet Place is very well-lit and there’s a lot of tension in many scenes, but without going into detail, it does have echoes (ahem) of Day of the Triffids mixed with Alien and Jurassic Park.
No, there’s no dinosaurs, but you’ll see what I mean when you watch it.
Why have I only given it the score that’s been given? Because while it’s a fairly short film, and while there are some fantastic scenes in it, there are also some that drag, and you’re really wanting them to get a move on. However, it’s still well worth a watch for what’s great about it.
I also watched it a second time just to make sure… and I was right first time.
The film is presented in the original 2.35:1 ratio and in 1080p high definition and is pin-sharp throughout and looking absolutely stunning, as you’d expect from a modern movie, bringing the Abbott’s nightmarish world to life. However, as they’ve used a variety of filming techniques, there’s one scene, around 30 minutes in, with Blunt and Jupe talking (quietly) to each other, and the anamorphic Panavision process just stretches the image rather oddly so their faces look distorted. This is NOT a problem with the disc – it’s the effect of what was done for the film – but I just don’t get why they did it.
The sound is presented in Dolby Atmos, and as you’ll discover, it’s all about how well the quieter moments are used, rather than just the noisy ones.
The extras are as follows:
- Creating the Quiet: Behind the Scenes of A Quiet Place (14:45): This is a decent in-depth piece that shows the small cast working together very well, and following this and Wonderstruck, I had no idea that Millicent Simmonds was deaf.
- The Sound of Darkness: Editing the sound for A Quiet Place (11:44): Ssh! They’re talking about staying silent while trying to utilise music…
- A Reason for Silence: The Visual Effects of A Quiet Place (7:33): This goes into detail as to exactly who or what is causing the problem for the family.
- Audio description: Does exactly what it says on the tin.
The menu is static and silent menu of Emily Blunt, holding her hand over her mouth, a la the cover artwork, subtitles are in four languages, and bucking the trend with chapters slightly, there are just a bit more than the usual 12 from most other studios, as we get 15, here. Ideally, I prefer one every 5 minutes, which would make 18 in this case, so, it’s close enough.
Running time: 91 minutes
Studio: Paramount Home Video
Released: August 13th 2018
Picture: 1080p High Definition
Sound: Dolby Atmos, Dolby Digital 5.1
Languages: Dolby Atmos: English only; Dolby Digital 5.1: French, Spanish, Portuguese
Subtitles: English, English SDH, French, Spanish, Portuguese
Widescreen: 2.39:1 (Dolby Vision, Anamorphic Panavision, Super 35)
Disc Format: BD50
Director: John Krasinski
Producers: Michael Bay, Andrew Form and Brad Fuller
Screenplay: Bryan Woods, Scott Beck and John Krasinski
Music: Marco Beltrami
Evelyn Abbott: Emily Blunt
Lee Abbott: John Krasinski
Regan Abbott: Millicent Simmonds
Marcus Abbott: Noah Jupe
Beau Abbott: Cade Woodward
Man in the Woods: Leon Russom
Old Man’s Dead Wife: Rhoda Pell (uncredited)
Reviewer of movies, videogames and music since 1994. Aortic valve operation survivor from the same year. Running DVDfever.co.uk since 2000. Nobel Peace Prize winner 2021.