Review / ‘A Quiet Place’ (M) ** and half

AT the core of this strange little supernatural thriller is John Krasinski, who co-wrote the story and screenplay with Bryan Woods and Scott Beck before going on to direct it and play the principal role. The trio and nine others co-operated in producing it, perhaps crowd-funding that seems to be used increasingly often nowadays to get movies made that might otherwise not have got produced.

“A Quiet Place” is for most of its length exactly that, a sort of throwback to the childhood of cinema before “The Jazz Singer” broke the sound barrier. Why? Because if any animal, human or quadruped, makes the slightest sound, a monster will appear more swiftly than might have seemed possible, eviscerate the unfortunate creature and move on.

That’s an amazing skill in a biped with more and bigger teeth than, for example, a great white shark, that’s somehow reached Planet Earth from somewhere out there and which cannot see but can hear the teeniest noise. Not bad for a creature that as well as being blind, has no visible ears, thus giving the lie to one of the most important scientific books in human history, “On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life” and its theory of evolution and survival of the fittest.

Why worry? This is a movie. In the movies anything can happen and probably will. Credibility ain’t in it. It’s 470+ days since the nasties appeared on earth. Humankind cannot defeat them. The papers were full of that shortcoming before they ceased to exist!. Only the Abbott family has survived.

Father Lee (John Krasinski) is enough of a whiz at electronic stuff to have filled the basement of the family’s rural house with audio gear that would initially seem not to have much utility in a world where survival depends on silence. SPOILER ALERT. As in all the best thrillers, it’s in the last reel.

Mother Evelyn (Krasinski’s wife Emily Blunt) is pregnant. That’s enough to send the film’s credibility index skyrocketing. Babies cry.

Daughter Regan (Millicent Simmonds) is on the cusp of puberty, which does destabilising things to a girl’s emotional stability. Son Marcus (Noah Jupe) is younger than Regan. Toddler Beau (Cade Woodward) doesn’t survive the first reel, as we quickly foresee will be the case.

Intentionally or otherwise, much about “A Quiet Place” defies credibility. If it’s a must-see movie for you, leave your rationality sensor at home and enjoy the monsters.

At Palace Electric and Dendy

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