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Silence instills fear on audiences with ‘A Quiet Place’

Paramount Pictures
John Krasinski and Noah Jupe in a scene of 'A Quiet Place.'

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In a post-apocalyptic world, things aren’t quite easy for The Abbott family, who are expecting one on the way. John Krasinski’s A Quiet Place holds a suspenseful yet emotional plot. The family, who are forced to live in silence, are surviving day by day on a farm. Their father, Lee Abbott (Krasinski), does his best to keep everyone safe and secure from the enormous, human-like creature who hunts by any sudden noise, meaning if they hear you, they hunt you.

In this tense film, many of the scenes are in dark, poor lighting settings, such as a basement and cornfield to emphasize the tension between the creature and the silent characters. The eldest daughter, Regan Abbot (Millicent Simmonds), portrays a curious and brave young girl, yet her only struggle is being deaf. This means she is unable to hear any of the sounds she makes, leading her father to take precaution with her.

Right off the bat, the movie comes off as soft and slow. The music in this film creates an emotional bond between the audience and characters in the beginning, by using light and steady melodies with instruments, like the piano. This shows how the family is gradually moving forward by having to live their life as carefully as possible during their travels. The soundtrack does a good job of getting the audience to feel sympathy, yet it builds anxiety when a tense moment is expected. As the movie  progresses, music gets deeper and darker, expressing the pressure. The audience gets pulled in with the suspenseful high pitched violin during eye bulging moments, such as when the hideous creature makes an appearance.

This clever film builds tension with it’s unexpected scenes, yet still remains enjoyable with its subtitles that are translated from the sign language the family is forced to use. Minimal talking is used to portray the intensified danger. The silence of the film puts emphasis on average, everyday sounds such as footprints. These sound effects over power the acting of the characters because it puts value on the title, A Quiet Place.

Dramatic irony is conveyed within the composition of the film. Certain angles of the movie allow the audience to know something that the characters do not. For example, placing the camera in front of the character, revealing the ginormous monster behind them.

The Abbott family lets the audience create an emotional bond. With quotes such as “Your father will always protect you. Always,” portrays a touching scene between the mother and son. Blending emotion and tension creates an amazing plot that keeps the audience pulled in and attentive.

Tension is beautifully built between the audience and characters, allowing them to engage and participate in the storytelling of this film. The family all works together to remain safe and remind each other that their love is real, allowing the audience to empathize with them. Not only is this film used to depict suspenseful moments, but its powerful theme of family love and support will never fade away, no matter how hard times get in this final destruction of the world.

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