A Quiet Place Part II
It's the sequel film it feels like everyone has been waiting for and arguably one of the postponements that hurt the most; A Quiet Place Part II was meant to hit theaters over a year ago, back in March of 2020, right as the global pandemic was really beginning to affect the world entirely. The film was delayed numerous times in anticipation of a theatrical release, and if you saw Part I (released April 2018, where did the time go?!) then you know exactly why a theatrical release is so important to this series. And this past weekend, just as the country is beginning to feel some pretty significant improvements to social mandates, the film was released the way director John Krasinski intended: in a theater experience with your friends and family nearby, with everyone on the edge of their seat. The 2018 film became notorious for its anxiety-driven, on edge, uncomfortable silence the film makes use of, and when you add in the creeping creaks of the world around the characters as they avoid the blind aliens, you get one of the most uncomfortable theater experiences possibly in all of cinema. Krasinski's unsettling environment he created in the first film is literally copy and pasted right into the sequel, picking up right where Part I left off. The film literally feels like it was a part of the original, and just cut in half for times sake, and it works fucking flawlessly. This is how you do a direct sequel to a story you want to continue. From the plot to the environments to the characters and its aliens, A Quiet Place II is arguably one of the best sequels to a film I've ever seen. And while the movie itself may not be the most mind blowing, top rated horrors of all time, it's the big picture that really makes this film so necessary, impactful, and satisfying. It was the continuation of the story that audiences needed, and it's true to the original film in literally every single sense. I cannot think of any other series who have created a sequel so spot-on to its predecessor that it honestly feels like one giant film, and not only that, but to have it work so well. A Quiet Place II may not be the scariest film you'll see this year, and after watching it, you can tell it was never meant to be that anyway. It was never about being the scariest, it was about the journey and the experience the film takes you down, and for that, the film blows most of modern day horror right out of the water. If you even partially liked Part I, the sequel is an absolute mandatory, in-theater viewing, or you're missing out on an experience you'll never replicate at home.
The film kicks off by giving a little bit of a backstory to the world's current situation by jumping back - all the way back - to Day 1 of when the chaos began. As the aliens begin their descent onto the planet and death and destruction quickly follow, the world is thrown into a mess as it seemingly become an every-man-for-himself situation where every step you take and every breath you make can put your life at risk, if the blind yet amplified-hearing aliens hear you. After a brief look at the beginning, the film blasts you back into the present day when much of the human race has been killed off. The Abbott family - minus the father - are trekking their way through the silent world to try and find other signs of life, when the daughter of the family Regan (Millicent Simmonds) sees smoke rising from the distance. Evelyn (Emily Blunt), Regan, her two siblings Marcus (Noah Jupe) and a newborn make the journey to the compound across the way where they discover old friend Emmett (Cillian Murphy) is hiding out there, and once this new connection is established, the film really begins to take off. Without giving too much away, every member of the family has their own vital role in not only finding signs of humanity but getting to it, and the uncomfortable and nerve-wracking journey they experience is where the quiet action really is. Will the Abbott family successfully ward off not just aliens but humans who have lost their sense of humanity, or will they fall victim to the savage and animalistic aliens who just want to prey on the planet? Find out in... A QUIET PLACE PART II!
Everything Krasinski put into this film comes together to make it work exactly the way it was intended, exactly the way it was with the original. I'm sure some reviewers who insist every movie has to be super artsy or it's worthless will say the film doesn't differentiate much from Part I, and I'm grateful the film doesn't take a different road than the first!! Going into the theater, I didn't want a film that goes off on this wild ride because of the fantastic feedback from the original film. This is a Part II, have it pick up where the other left off and make it feel just as authentic as the first! And in that respect, Krasinski absolutely hit the nail right on the head. The cast the film focus on are magnificent in their roles as well; obviously Emily Blunt oozes talent but the real focus on this film is on her two grown children, Regan and Marcus. The two kids have their own storylines that are playing out parallel to each other, but that tie-in together in such a fantastic way. Their actions replicate each other even if they are miles apart from each other, proving the connection, bond, and mindset they both share is so close and tight. The two kids took their roles in the storyline and really defined themselves in this movie, and in a film that thrives off silence, it's done in such a satisfying way. The story goes to some pretty emotional and unsettling places - from immense pain to the most pure definition of fear - and as an overall production A Quiet Place Part II is exactly what we have been waiting for for the last three years. Make time to see this film in theaters to really get the full experience, because I promise you it won't be the same watching it on your tv screen. Films like this as the reason theaters cannot die. Check it out!!