Finally, yet another major delayed horror release has made its way to theaters. Originally planned for 2020, like just everything else, A Quiet Place Part II took a backseat to a global lockdown Apparently, movie fans have been chomping at the bit to see John Krasinski’s follow-up to his major 2018 hit. To date, A Quiet Place Part II has already set pandemic box office records. Most importantly, critical responses suggest that Krasinski didn’t skimp on the quality for his anticipated sequel. So if it feels a little familiar, this monster sequel still has scares up its sleeve.
Following the death of her husband, Evelyn and her children, Regan, Marcus, and newborn son, leave their now destroyed home to search for other survivors. Eventually they find shelter in an abandoned foundry with another lone survivor, Emmett. Soon thereafter the survivors stumble on a radio transmission broadcasting the song, Beyond the Sea. Believing it’s a message from other survivors, Regan sets off alone to find the radio tower. She hopes she broadcast the high frequency from her hearing aids to help other survivors. Desperate to save her daughter, Evelyn begs Emmett to find her. Now with the survivors divided, their fight for survival intensifies as more of the creatures relentlessly close in.
A Quiet Place Part II Continues to Find Big Scares From Its Simple Premise
Less a sequel and more a continuation of A Quiet Place, writer and director John Krasinski expands his world without tinkering too much with what worked. Following an exciting and terse prologue set before the events of the first movie, Krasinski picks things up as the Abbott family abandons their family home in search of survivors. Obviously, A Quiet Place Part II faces a different challenge. Unlike the first movie, the sequel can’t lean on the novelty of its premise. Audiences know what to expect now. And Krasinski wisely keeps A Quiet Place Part II moving at a crisp pace. That is, A Quiet Place Part II expertly builds a simple story of survival around several white-knuckle moments. While there’s inevitably some repetitiveness, it’s a minor quarrel with a strong sequel.
A Quiet Place Part II faces a different challenge. Unlike the first movie, the sequel can’t lean on the novelty of its premise.
After all, A Quiet Place Part II knows how to squeeze the most from its premise. Yes, the sequel still relies on the quiet to terrifyingly loud setup for its scares. But Krasinski still finds inventive ways to push you to the edge of your seat. Whether it’s the first chase in the foundry or Simmonds’ Regan’s search of an abandoned rail car, Krasinski’s direction alongside Marco Beltrami’s score and top-notch sound design deliver plenty of thrills. One of the highlights – a scene in which Regan and Emmett discover a clan of feral humans – deftly juxtaposes the two groups of main characters desperate bid for survival. As for the climax, it’s every bit as tense and thrilling as the first movie. Though it clearly signals a sequel, Krasinski still gives us an emotionally satisfying ending.
A Quiet Place Part II Remembers The Importance of Emotional Investment
One of the common complaints leveled at Godzillia vs Kong was its mostly disposable human characters. In contrast, Krasinski – who only briefly appears in the sequel – remembered the importance of emotional investment for genuine suspense. Like the first movie, A Quiet Place Part II succeeds in making you care for the Abbott family. Not surprisingly, Emily Blunt turns in the kind of performance that should garner more attention from critics. As a mother still grieving for her husband, Blunt channels several emotions that make her character both real and sympathetic. It’s the humanity that Blunt brings to her character that makes the concept of alien monsters believable. As the middle-child, Noah Jupe dutifully spends most of the sequel looking terrified though the conclusion promises bigger things for him.
An absolute highlight of the first movie, Simmonds grows into the role giving her character a genuinely compelling arc.
However, Millicent Simmonds, the hearing impaired actress playing Regan Abbott, owns the sequel. An absolute highlight of the first movie, Simmonds grows into the role giving her character a genuinely compelling arc. If A Quiet Place Part II gives us more of the same, it’s Simmonds’ character and accompanying performance that offers something new. Krasinski’s screenplay gives Regan the sequel’s best story and Simmonds steps up to the role putting audiences on notice that she is a start-in-the making. Joining the Abbott family in the sequel, an unrecognizable Cillian Murphy (28 Days Later) is a welcome addition to the cast as his character’s journey offers a nice parallel to what we saw from Krasinski’s character in the first movie. Sadly, A Quiet Place Part II wastes Djimon Hounsou in too small a role.
A Quiet Place Part II a Worthy Follow-Up
As far as sequels go, A Quiet Place Part II exceeds all expectations. Krasinski expands his world and increases the monster action without losing the tension an emotional core from his original vision. Rather than re-hashing what worked the first time around, A Quiet Place Part II feels like a natural extension of Krasinski’s story where his characters continue to grow into their respective arcs. And Cillian Murphy’s character never feels like a superfluous addition. Instead, Krasinski gives Murphy a fleshed out arc that compliments the Abbott family and parallel’s the sequels story and themes. Bottom line, A Quiet Place Part II delivers more tense monster thrills alongside a moving story about survival.
THE PROFESSOR’S FINAL GRADE: A