Director; John Krasinski. Starring; Emily Blunt, Cillian Murphy, Milicent Simonds. Rated PG-13. Color. 97 Minutes.
After the surprising success of the first installment, we return to a universe where talking is a death sentence in “A Quiet Place Part II”. John Krazinski is back in the director’s chair as he continues his alien invasion saga. His character, Lee, died in the first installment and it is up to his wife (Emily Blunt), and her remaining three kids to find a new life all the while having to shut their mouths on a daily basis.
While his character died, Krasinski is able to make a brief appearance at the beginning. It is DAY 1 of the alien invasion. The giant creatures literally come out of nowhere and destroy this small town in minutes. It is absolute chaos as Lee and wife Evelyn are in a scramble like everyone else to get the kids safe. This is my favorite sequence, highlighted by an amazing one-take with Emily Blunt trying to get out in her car with a destroyed bus barreling towards her.
Cut to the immediate moment after the first film. The family is still grieving as pops just died. With a newborn baby in tow, Blunt and the kids head to find some semblance of a society. The eldest daughter Regan (Millicent Simonds) may be deaf, but she is smart. She sees some type of facility with a fire burning not more than a few miles away. On the road they go not knowing what awaits. When they arrive, a jingling alarm system trips them up and they have to run for their lives. When they get into the warehouse a masked man helps them narrowly escape the monster and retreat into a bunker.
This disheveled masked savior is no stranger at all. The man’s name is Emmett (Cillian Murphy), a former close friend of the family before everything went down. Initially he insists that the family leave the next day, as he does not have enough resources for everyone. Emmett is a man who sees no hope left. Regan and her hobbled brother discover an actual song playing on the radio. She coordinates where this song is coming from, an island off the East Coast. Regan is determined to get there by finding a boat to reach the island.
Mom is obviously beside herself and begs Emmett to go after her. Thus creates the two main stories as both the travelers and the group in the bunker each have to try and survive.
“Part II” is certainly a downgrade from the first installment. The freshness of the idea has already been explored so this sequel feels somewhat stale. There are also so many shots of characters just brooding, easily 15 minutes that could have been cut out. We get it, living in this world sucks. Add in the younger brother making one of the dumbest decisions for zero reason. Dumb characters in horror movies have me seething every time.
It’s not all bad in this thriller. As I mentioned, the opening is exciting and a great way to get things going. The quest involving Emmett and Regan is full of gripping moments, including multiple encounters fighting the creatures and even running into a group of cannibals. Emily Blunt is also fantastic, but they really do not give her character as much to do as I thought would happen. All and all, “Part II” will entertain, but it has the feeling of a film that will be easy to forget.