Director: John Krasinski
Writers: John Krasinski
Stars: Emily Blunt, Millicent Simmonds, Cillian Murphy, Noah Jupe
John Krasinski’s 2018 film ‘A Quiet Place’ was an original masterpiece in my opinion. This film expertly manoeuvres around an apocalyptic narrative, but the genius of it is, that it bets on an emotional investment from it’s audience rather than jump-scare tactics. So when a sequel was announced I was overly excited with anticipation. After the height of a pandemic, and almost a year and a half later, ‘A Quiet Place II’ finally arrived.
I was lucky enough to attend the films Premiere with a live post screening Q&A with Mr John Krasinsksi himself. ‘AQP2’ introduction briefly clues us in on how this silent-driven existence came to be, but avoids any real indepth exploration, which made me think would a prequel be something worth making? Not soon after it picks up where the first left off, following the surviving members of the Abbott family; Evelyn (Emily Blunt), her daughter Regan (Millicent Simmonds), son Marcus (Noah Jupe), and her newborn – as they leave the comfort of their former home to find a new safe haven.
The premise of this sequel remains the same, it’s best to stay quiet or be eaten, but Krasinski includes a lot of twisted fun along the way. It’s the emotional journeys of Regan and Marcus that project the film forward. Regan is struggling with the death of her father and feels she must be the protector of the family. Both Regan and Marcus take centre stage of this story, leaving Blunt in a more supporting feature as a mother. Simmonds’ quick-thinking Regan carries arguably more weight in a riveting performance.
Even with John Krasinski’s character no longer part of the movie, the strong male lead is still present in the newly introduced Emmett (Cillian Murphy). While during the film you still miss Lee Abbott (John Krasinski), Cillian Murphy does just as good of a job commanding the screen. The family faces one danger after another, and they are far more frequent and accelerated than before. In the previous installment the creatures were identified more by their movements and screeching attack sounds. Now they are seen in all their glory crashing through walls, scrambling over surfaces and pouncing on their prey.
The investment in the characters is no less intense in ‘AQP2’. Having standard dialogue replaced to a large degree by the raw emotions, the intimacy of the storytelling tugs relentlessly at our anxieties for the duration. Like the first film, one major benefit is Marco Beltrami’s orchestral score, which is a lot more noticeable, dialing up the tension throughout.
Although Evelyn Abbott takes a bit of a back seat in the story, Emily Blunt is still as brilliant as ever, both as a loving mother and a defender of her family. ‘A Quiet Place II’ at no stage misses a beat from the first, and continues to be a story of sheer brilliance carried by the characters emotions, an original concept that was absolute genius. A Quiet Place Part II is a sequel rarity that both continues the original’s fine standing story and creates its own personality in the process.