Oh boy here we go, man I’ve been waiting for this movie for so long. One of the longest delayed movies because of the that nasty C word. The C-Virus. Seriously that beer needs to change its name because I hate that word. But as the tide changes, the releases of all these movies that have been held up
has finally started. And A Quiet Place Part II has been right up high on my list of must sees.
I cannot think of a movie where I’ve purposefully thought about taking into the cinema food and drinks that make no sound, either to open or consume. Last time, opening my packet of peanut M&M’s was particularly stressful as everyone was so into the movie you could hear a snifter drop. I was glad that we don’t have those plastic straws. You know, the ones that can make a severe sound when rubbed against the plastic lid slits!
We mark movies out of ten here but personally I don’t give tens. I’m not sure I believe in them, that they exist. But that first one. I really struggled not to put those two digits down next to its name. A Quiet Place was just so… so everything! It frekn had me and I gave myself to it. And if you haven’t seen it. Well. As Joe Biden would say, ‘come on man!’
With movies like this, I want to go out of my way not to spoil anything. So as you can see from the trailer, after a quick recap, it picks up where we left off. But now the family have decided they must leave and find others in order to survive. So let’s go for it. Is it as good? Has a second movie miracle occurred?
Emily Blunt she is so good she is so shore footed and competent. Making it real, making you feel everything she wants you to feel, in every scene she is in. Again, Blunt is flawless like in the first one. A Quiet Place proves that you cannot fake tension and pain. You must be a talented actor because the whole thing really rests on an actor expressing that emotion. Any movie like this, no matter how big the budget is, is going to be limited by the main ‘fearful’ and ‘stressed’ actor in the story. And that’s what made the first one so successful because it leant so heavily on Blunt.
Cillian Murphy joins the cast for this second installment, bringing his uniquely creepy and untrustworthy vibes. I think he has made every movie he’s been in better. He can seem to adapt to any environment, and a gnarly loner type is easy for him. Millicent Simmonds as the hearing-impaired daughter and Noah Jupe as her nervous brother are both solid again. I thought Simmonds was a real find in the first one and I’m glad she won some awards for it.
Because of the nature of the story, dialogue was kept beautifully simple and visual in the first one. The use of sign language and paper cuttings and notes on walls and white boards. I loved that, and I love when a movie doesn’t try to explain everything. Instead, trusting in us to figure out what we need to. So likewise, in this sequel, dialogue was kept pretty tight again. Whispers and sign language for the most part. Eyes of panic telling you that you need to be quiet! No matter what situation you find yourself in.
A unique creature was introduced to us in the first one, which could have been ruined with more screen time. But no, I am very happy to report that, if anything, the monsters have become more intimidating. As you really see their power and speed. Their ability to kill and to do so efficiently is phenomenal. And they are never too far away. Never so distant to forgive you for any mistake that will inevitably be made.
So, what about the story? The first one was simple but beautiful. A question. How can a family live in this new nightmarish world? What would happen if you tried? A Quiet Place Part II, like most sequels, wanted to ask more questions, add more ‘what ifs’. Like, who can you trust? Who can you
depend on? What should we do, where should we go? Who should do what and when and how?
The story lost its way a bit for me about halfway through. As not only did it get a bit muddy, the family also split up and meet other characters. But for me, this just meant less screen time with Emily Blunts’ character. And I felt the loss of it. I found that the most amount of tension was always with her and what she was trying to do and how she was trying to survive.
And unfortunately, the last act just didn’t have the care and attention it deserved. Not so bad that it knocked me out of the movie, but it didn’t sit right. As soon as the credits started rolling, I was listing off the reasons why. They only stand out as everything else is so good. I believe going in with this knowledge will help to set your expectations at the right level. I went in with an extremely high bar and yet I still really enjoyed it. And that does not happen often at all.
I wonder if director John Krasinski would have tweaked the last act a bit if the pandemic hadn’t interrupted the production. As that is all that’s needed. Even so, I still felt the need to handle my confectionary with the utmost care. And when you find yourself holding your breath in any movie, I think that’s a sure sign you’ve not wasted your money.