REVIEW: A Quiet Place Part II

The year is 2020.

It’s not actually. Don’t think you’re stuck in some endless loop of torture, brutally reliving lockdown forever and ever until you slowly perish and die.

In fact, it was just a jovial way for me to begin this piece, talking about A Quiet Place Part II.

Wait. That means 2? It’s A Quiet Place Part 2? I’ve only ever seen it written down. Who knew?

Last year, I was supposed to interview Emily Blunt, John Krasinski and Cillian Murphy about the sequel to 2018’s A Quiet Place. And then something much scarier than the plot of the film happened; Boris Johnson appeared on my television every week, telling me I still couldn’t go to Pizza Hut.

Now, we jump forward a year, and I finally got to see A Quiet Place Part 2, after months and months of delays. Admittedly, I didn’t get to interview Emily, John or Cillian, so if you’ve come here for that, you just got CLICK-BAITED.

Instead, if you’ve come to this article looking for the same positive review of A Quiet Place Part 2 that everyone else has already written or said; but you just wanted more silly voices, then you’ve come to the right place.

A Quiet Place Part 2 follows on pretty much straight after the first film, where we see the Abbott family trying to survive the attacking monsters.

It feels slightly different to the first film; with the first A Quiet Place, we didn’t know what the monsters looked like; how they really moved or what motivated them. Most of the fear came from the unknown.

Now, three years later, we know all of this, so John, the director, couldn’t rely on this, and instead got his frights in a much more typical way, with quite a few jump scares. And I actually liked it, which is surprising, because I’m a wuss.

The last horror movie I watched was in 2003, when I saw a pirate copy of Gothika around a friend’s house, and sprinted home the whole way, terrified Halle Berry was after me. (It seemed unlikely she’d be lurking in a cul-de-sac in Essex, but it’s better to be safe than sorry.)

A Quiet Place Part 2 seems, in a way, more enjoyable than its predecessor, because you get the excitement of the jump scares, not knowing when one of the monsters will – not to put it too crudely, but – make me poo my pants. Violently

That’s not to say that John Kransinski hasn’t mastered tension in his films. I know, the man who is a black belt in gift-wrapping has effortlessly made two of the most tense films I’ve ever seen. With every scene, you’re aware a monster is coming, but unsure whether it’ll attack; or as people are creeping through locations, and we get more close-up shots of feet than Quentin Tarantino’s wet dreams – you’re on edge panicking that they’ll step on a stick and trigger a swarm of monsters.

For people that, like myself, are too scared to watch a scary film, let me rephrase it in a way you can understand… Have you ever been in the work toilets, trying to do a poo, and another coworker enters the cubicle next to you, so you just have to sit in silence until they’ve gone? That’s the sort of tension I’m talking about.

My biggest irk is that I feel like I’ve seen these tense moments before… In fact, I’ve seen them before in the original A Quiet Place. During one scene, the incredible Millicent Simmonds, who plays Regan, is tip-toeing into a studio, carefully trying not to tread on something that will make a noise and alert a monster. We see a close-up of her foot, as she slowly steps down on various items.

Much like when Emily Blunt’s character Evelyn slowly tip-toes down a flight of stairs, as we know she’s going to tread on an upturned nail. It wasn’t quite paying homage to the first film as it was “Can I copy your homework?” And even when it comes to the ending –

In fact, I should probably issue on of these, at risk of being beaten by the Internet… SPOILER ALERT. I’m about to talk about the ending of the film.

Even the end of the film felt so identical to the first; Regan uses her hearing aid to cause the monsters to freak out, weakening them, and allowing them to be killed. This happened in the first film too. In fact, I feel like nothing really was resolved in this one. They just moved from one location to another.

Sure, if I was John Krasinski, I’d do two things; I’d let everyone touch my chin because I could actually grow more facial hair than the two pubey whisps I currently have, and I’d make so many A Quiet Place sequels that I never fully wrapped them up, but I just left A Quiet Place Part 2 feeling a little deflated. What did they really achieve for all of their difficulty?

While I loved the film, it just felt like Cillian – who was, again, amazing, by the way – replaced John Krasinski after he died in the first film.

And if you’re upset about spoilers again, he died in A Quiet Place, which came out in 2018. This is a review for the sequel. If you haven’t seen the first film, but are reading this article, I hope I spoiled it for you.

In fact, just in case – Bruce Willis is dead in The Sixth Sense, Hugh Jackman kills his clones in The Prestige, Brad Pitt doesn’t exist in Fight Club, and Kevin Spacey is a criminal…

In The Usual Suspects. Yup. That’s what I was supposed to say…

There is so much to like about A Quiet Place Part 2 though – the acting is brilliant; Cillian’s great, the kid’s are great, and Emily Blunt is – you guessed it – great. She’s so powerful even when she’s not uttering any dialogue; you see actual distress in her eyes. In fact, I wish there was more of her; unlike the first film, A Quiet Place Part 2 separates the family, and focuses a lot more on Regan, than Evelyn.

But there’s more locations to take in; some great set pieces; a lot more stars to spot, and as for the sound design – chef’s kiss. I mean, it’s called A Quiet Place; they naturally had to get the sound right.

That’s like the Johnny Depp film The Lone Ranger not featuring a ranger all alone.

What? He’s never alone? He’s always with a sidekick? Well, that makes no sense. But then again, I watched three minutes of that film, before giving up, so I suppose it’s my fault for not actually knowing that reference properly.

There’s something so special about following Regan, a girl who is hearing impaired, and as she turns off her hearing aid, being stuck in total silence with her. It allows you to almost relax and catch your breath again, but at the same time, put you on edge, realising you’re just as vulnerable as she is, as you can’t hear predators coming for you or her. It’s really incredible hearing it in a full cinema, in total silence. Until that dickhead behind you is chomping his popcorn at that exact time. Is my eye-twitching? It feels like it’s twitching.

It’s just a very, very, very, very, very good thriller. I loved the first A Quiet Place, and the sequel is just bigger, and scarier in every way. In fact, out of five, I’m giving it, erm, what can I give it? 

Fitting with A Quiet Place, I’m giving it four shushes… One, two, three, four. That was a lot harder to do. I’m really out of breath now.

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