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Tag Archive: John Krasinski


Review by C.J. Bunce

Last year’s winner for most surprising film to be discussing at the water cooler was A Quiet Place, a uniquely quiet but suspenseful horror thriller that held back the true nature of the threat in its previews similar to Midnight Special, Signs, and 10 Cloverfield Lane.  And as with those films we’re definitely looking at an otherworldly threat for the film’s protagonists.  Critics and audiences seemed to go for this mix of sci-fi and horror, possibly out of an affinity for director and co-star John Krasinski (The Office, Jack Ryan) and his on and off-camera wife, co-star Emily Blunt (Mary Poppins Returns, The Adjustment Bureau, Edge of Tomorrow).  It’s now streaming on most major platforms, including Amazon Prime, Vudu, Hulu, YouTube, Google Play, and Fandango, as well as Blu-ray, 4K, and DVD.

Few movies were hyped in 2018 as much as A Quiet Place, although come awards season it only received a nomination for best sound editing and Emily Blunt took home the Screen Actors Guild Award for supporting actress, despite her clearly starring role in the film.  If there is a reason to watch the movie it’s for Blunt, who steals the show in any film she appears in.  In A Quiet Place, for better or worse, she lets go from an acting standpoint and offers up a beginning-to-end melodramatic and possibly over-the-top emotional performance, similar to her portrayal as an amnesiac in The Girl on the Train.  Some subtlety would have been a good thing, because in contrast to her ever-stoic husband she comes off as hysterical.  We’ll chalk this up to a quirky misstep by an inexperienced director (it’s also an instance of his character doing all the smart and brave things, and Blunt’s all the dumb things, which gets old quickly).

But this one has been done before, especially as seen in the above-referenced films, and multiple episodes of The Twilight Zone.  The plot is thin.  A family of five are among the only people living (on Earth? in the region? we don’t know).  A blind insectoid alien menace (think Blunt in Edge of Tomorrow only here she’s not the badass Angel of Verdun) will slaughter anything and anyone it hears with its sonic-locator brain.  So everyone is quiet all the time.  Only they aren’t–we hear them make all sorts of body and movement noises for the first half of the film, only to learn later from the father that they don’t listen for soft noises.  The daughter of the family (played by Millicent Simmonds) is deaf, and so she doesn’t know when noises are happening around her, leading to the key dire circumstances throughout the film.  The audience can’t help but put themselves in the positions of the characters.  What would you do?  Unfortunately the film is full of many tropes like you’d find in teen slasher flicks:  so many times characters make decisions that are similar to a teen walking outside their cabin in a thunderstorm at night in their underwear after hearing a mass murderer is on the loose.  Any viewer would think the circumstances are more dire than the characters in A Quiet Place.

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If you were looking for M. Night Shyamalan’s next movie, it’s Glass, the third movie in his Unbreakable trilogy, expected no earlier than 2019.  But while you’re waiting for the next Shyamalan flick, we’re thinking the trailer for the supernatural thriller A Quiet Place–the preview being shown in front of current releases in theaters this week–is about as good as anyone could do to imitate The Sixth Sense director’s style and unusual brand of creepy storytelling.

The actor most people only know as the young office worker on the American version of The Office and the next actor to play Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan in this summer’s Amazon Prime series, John Krasinski is both directing, co-writing, and starring in the film.  He’s playing a father opposite real-life wife Emily Blunt, genre star of Edge of Tomorrow, Looper, The Adjustment Bureau, The Huntsman: Winter’s War, and Sicario, and the actor everyone is waiting to see as Mary Poppins in Mary Poppins Returns this Christmas.  In A Quiet Place the family is secluded and never makes a sound.  They communicate in sign language because they believe a supernatural force is after them that is triggered by any noise.  But what’s really going on?  It looks like it can end up one of three ways: like Shyamalan’s Signs, The Happening, or The Village.  Which will it be?  Or do we have it all wrong?

Now being previewed in theaters, check out this nicely done trailer for A Quiet Place:

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