A Quiet Place ★★★

Horror's not my field at all, as you know if you read my reviews regularly, and I could complain about a lot of the logical holes, leaps of reason and laughable effects here -- the whiteboard is a whole essay's worth of issues, as is the nail, and why the hell do the creatures look so damn corny? and what a total waste of a Witness / A Corner in Wheat-style deus ex grain silo -- but it also seems only fair to admit that as critical as I consistently was during the runtime, I was also caught up in the story and enjoying myself. It's pretty well-directed and economical, and admittedly the entire premise is sufficiently close to classic Pure Cinema ideals to appeal to me at a base level; I just like the silence, preferably not interrupted by the excessively instructive musical score. As goofy as the story itself is, that's just the jumping off point for a film rife with setpieces that veer closer to thriller than horror, and it's effective enough in that regard that its many dramatic clichés (the Family Is Paramount stuff, chiefly) are somewhat less offensive than they might otherwise be. It's silly fun, more or less what I reckon these movies are supposed to be, which is a huge improvement on titles like The Conjuring so egregiously dumb and overbearing they made me want to blow my head off.

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