#REVIEW: “A QUIET PLACE PART II”
Review by David Baldwin for Mr. Will Wong
After an extended prologue, A QUIET PLACE PART II picks-up seconds after its predecessor with Evelyn (Emily Blunt), Regan (Millicent Simmonds), Marcus (Noah Jupe) and the new baby escaping death and on the run from the alien threat. They are not sure where to turn, and end up in an abandoned steel foundry with old friend Emmett (Cillian Murphy).
A QUIET PLACE PART II is a solid Sequel laden with anxious thrills that rival and often surpass the original film. Spoiling the world building and threats the Abbot family face on their quest for survival would ruin some of the fun Writer/Director John Krasinski has injected into this followup. Fans will not be disappointed. He builds on the foundation of the first film in interesting ways and answers some burning questions at the same time as he poses new ones. The violence is heightened, the breathless pacing is impeccable and the scares are hair-raising. The prologue Krasinski pops-in for is a masterclass in tension – we know bad things are going to happen but it does not take away from how intense the set piece becomes. While it showcases how much higher the budget is versus last time, it also highlights just how much he learned as a Filmmaker. I cannot even begin to describe how outstanding the Sound Design is.
That said, the beauty of A Quiet Place was how tightly-wound and small it felt. The mysteries were compelling and boldly ending in the middle of a scene was a rush that practically demanded an immediate follow-up. Krasinski employs many of those same tricks here. Sure, the thrills are just as breathless and terrifying, but nothing feels nearly as fresh or exciting. The mysteries are downright frustrating and ending on another ellipsis does not land the same way. And why bother casting talented actors like Scoot McNairy and Oscar-nominee Djimon Hounsou if you are not going to use them for more than a scene or two? Do not get me wrong, I think Krasinski does a great job attempting to capture lightning in a bottle again; I just wish what we got was a bit more fine-tuned and not such a methodical set-up for Part III and the spin-off directed by Jeff Nichols.
Blunt delivers another strong performance as the matriarch of the Abbott family, and Murphy more than holds his own against the returning Cast. Jupe’s character is expanded on well, expertly tiptoeing across an emotional battlefield of anxiety and paranoia. Much like the first film however, the Sequel belongs to Simmonds. She commands the screen like a seasoned vet and throws herself into every scene, using her precise emotions and body language to act circles around everyone. Her work is inspiring and damn near brilliant. Kudos to Krasinski for rightfully building the story around her.
A QUIET PLACE PART II hits a little different during a pandemic, but is still a solid piece of thrilling entertainment. Krasinski stumbles in a few spots and makes up for it in others. The Cast, led by Simmonds, is aces and the sound design work is perfection. Watch it as loud as you can, hold your breath and embrace this return to quiet.
Paramount Pictures Canada release A QUIET PLACE PART II on Digital/On-Demand services
and Amazon Prime Video on Tuesday, July 13, 2021.
The film is in select theatres now and will be available on 4K, Blu-ray and DVD
on Tuesday, July 27, 2021.
*Please ensure you exercise caution in observing COVID-19 protocols if seeing this in-theatre*.