Acclaimed to be one of the best horror/thriller films of this time, A Quiet Place is a story about Earth that has had an attack leading to killer creatures crawling in search of blood to terrorize y’all’s neighborhood. The film’s actor John Krasinski is also the director. His co-star is his real-life wife, Emily Blunt. While the film is straightforward, there is a lot of mystery around the creatures and where they came from. The movie has an interesting concept but has too many hand-crafted situations to generate the chills. Here’s the film A Quiet Place’s plot-holes explained, spoilers ahead. Before the rant begins, let’s take a look at a calm and composed summary.
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Okay, now that I got that out of my system. Let me summarize. The film does a fair job of exploring what a mother and father go through when their kid is killed in front of them as they watch helplessly. They are not shown to be the family who will survive and save the world. Somehow they have endured, sometimes they are careless, they take each day as it comes, they make stupid decisions through their grief. This is the story of a family that is slightly better at survival than the ones who were slaughtered. This doesn’t mean that they have all the answers and are heroes who will save the day. It is likely that sooner or later, baby or not, they will slip again and will die like the rest. The baby decision cost Lee his life. While the film ends with the pumping of a shotgun (like she’s going to turn out like Arnold in predator), it’s likely that the aliens just flee and attack at another time when they aren’t as ready. However, the events in the film could have avoided so many just-for-thrills “close shaves” that came in back to back.
What are those creatures? Where did they come from?
While the film doesn’t disclose it, John has a backstory to the creatures. They are aliens from a planet that had extremely harsh conditions and hence have a bulletproof exterior impervious to explosions as well. It is also clear that where they came from did not have any light and thus they never developed eyes. However, their ears are super sharp, and that’s how they hunt and kill. These creatures landed on Earth not on spaceships but as part of meteorites. A handful of them was able to wipe out most of the population because of their speed, agility, and invulnerability. They are parasitic in nature and are hunters without an agenda. Also, it appears that sound just pisses them off. The aliens have been thought through well, but the plot not as much.
High-frequency sounds really drive them crazy. These can apparently be sound or even radio waves – which means mechanical and electromagnetic waves of high frequency. Now the aliens are not tough inside out. They have a hard exoskeleton but soft squishy insides. When they are exposed to these high frequencies, their protective shell opens up and can be shot and killed. As we see in the final scenes of the film, the mother and daughter realize this and shoot the alien in the room.
The alien’s weakness is the same as that of the plot’s. Earth functions on a gazillion of these mechanical and electromagnetic waves, it’s the one thing that powers us humans. As a species, we specialize in producing sounds in so many frequencies that we invented ‘noise pollution’. Ideally, soon as the aliens would have landed, they would have all gone crazy and died like the one in the last scene. It’s cute that the alien gets annoyed with television (the interference), thank goodness that TV and Cable are a rare thing on Earth.
Hmm… why does the concept of “an alien’s head blowing up because of loud frequencies” ring a bell? Oh yeah…
The film begins with the introduction to the Abbott family.
Lee (John) – Dad
Evelyn (Emily) – Mom
Regan – The daughter who’s deaf
Marcus – The eldest son
Beau – The youngest son
They pick up supplies from a deserted store and are trekking back. And here’s the oddest thing. These folks are the last of the few survivors and understand the graveness of their situation. Sound Equals Death. In spite of that, both parents take the front of their line leaving the youngest of their kids trailing at the back. That kid sneaks some batteries to a toy Regan lets him take and turns it on. The sound from the toy gets him killed. The events of this movie must be happening in an imaginary world where ‘this’ family is the smartest of the lot and is somehow still alive.
We lose one, we make another
To mourn the loss of their child and protect the ones that remain, Lee and Evelyn do the one thing that will ensure the family’s safety – plan another baby. Wait, what? Fear of making any noise instills lust and a craving for another child? Perhaps Lee and Evelyn grew up playing hide-and-seek all wrong. Childbirth comes with noise, noise means death, and it’s going to be extremely difficult to explain to a newborn to “keep it down”. The Abbots probably found all the quiet post-apocalyptic life too dull and wanted to throw in some excitement.
A year after their son is killed, Evelyn is almost due. Regan is guilty about Beau’s death because it was she who handed him that toy. Lee, being the mature father, hasn’t yet told Regan in clear terms that she wasn’t responsible and that he still loves her. He’s hoping for her to understand that on her own, primarily through a moment where he leaves her behind on a fishing trip. On the trip, to an area with a waterfall, Lee is schooled by his son Marcus on father-daughter relationships and how he needs to put Regan out of her misery. Now, we have an almost-due Evelyn who is alone at home with her deaf daughter, and Lee is on a random fishing trip with his son where he showing him that you can howl all you want near the waterfall because it drowns all other human noises. Wait, there is a safe haven which comes with a view and food, and they don’t live here? Was it too loud with the constant rumble of the waterfall making it hard for them to sleep? And also, “howl all you want” is perhaps precisely the freedom Evelyn might be craving for while giving birth… but hey, the Abbots don’t need that kind of easy-peasy option.
From home, Regan takes a walk to her brother’s spot of death and mourns. While she seems to set out with some sorta agenda to obliterate the aliens, she’s just chilling, conquering her fears. Meanwhile, Evelyn is humming a light tune in her head setting up the house for the climax – doing laundry and happens to pull up a one-inch nail on the stairs. As a final touch, her water breaks, it’s time for the baby, and no one is home. Perfect, time for an alien! At this point, it would have been shocking if she missed stepping on that nail, but she doesn’t disappoint. She makes enough noise, and one of the creatures comes to investigate. She quickly switches the bulbs to red, but no one is there to see that yet. Using a well-placed timer alarm, she makes it up to a bathtub to deliver the baby Abbot Family Style – left behind and in the company of a ruthless parasitic alien that hates sound.
Selective Hearing Issues
Lee and Marcus make it back in time to see the red bulbs. Lee enters the house as Marcus sets off rockets in the distance and the creature is attracted to this sound just in time for Evelyn’s scream. Marcus’ rockets are not late, nor are they early, they explode precisely when they’re meant to! She gives birth, and Lee is elated to find her and the baby still alive and, more importantly, quiet. Perhaps she knows the baby-talk for “it would be best if you didn’t cry else both of us will be shredded by ravenous bulletproof aliens”. Lee takes Evelyn to the soundproof portion of their house and keeps the baby inside a soundproof box with oxygen. This place could have been prepared and used for the delivery too, but no, that wouldn’t be thrilling enough for them now, would it? For now, they are safe, and Lee can go out to look for his kids who have been .. wait for it .. left behind. He leaves but not without ignoring the sounds of running water flowing into the safe soundproof basement.
Regan and Marcus unite to light a fire on top of a corn silo and wait for their dad, but Marcus ends up falling through the hatch into the corn, the door follows him in, and finally, Regan jumps to save him from drowning. Then Marcus saves her from drowning, and they both sit on top of the door. Dear Rose from the Titanic, both of them could sit safely on a tiny little door, but you wouldn’t share that large plank with Jack, just saying. Moving on, the kids have made too much noise, and the creature joins them on inside the silo. The kids jump back into the corn and flip the door on top of them. Apparently, they have figured out a unique paddling technique to stay afloat in the corn this time around.
I don’t care if I didn’t hear you
As we are shown earlier, Regan’s hearing aid drives the alien crazy, and it runs away leaving a creature shaped hole in the tin wall. Lee unites with his two kids, but before they can make it back, the alien attacks him. The alien seems to have had a change of heart, even though Lee’s pretty quiet the creature’s like “Nah, imma cut you up anyway”. Seeing their dad being attacked, Marcus yells out from the truck that they are hiding in, and the alien turns its attention to the truck. Lee sacrifices himself to save his kids. Before yelling, he signals “I love you” to Regan and then dies. The kids use the sloped mechanism to get away in the truck to their home.
Oh, so high-frequency sounds bust ’em open
Back at home, a creature comes looking for the cooing sound of the baby. As it reaches the basement, without stepping on that nail, we are shown interference in all the surveillance equipment. Regan realizes that the alien is getting affected by her hearing aid and she turns it up which makes the alien vulnerable. A 13-year-old ‘deaf’ girl identifies the weakness of high frequency ‘sounds’ that the alien has, the thing that thousands of scientists with PhDs and with hearing could not; maybe they did but killed themselves to make the plot more gripping. Regan places the device in front of the mic and amplifier system which basically obliterates the ears of the creature, exposing the soft insides; Evelyn shoots and kills it. Hmm, what on Earth was Lee doing with a mic and amplifier setup inside a house that needed to be quiet? He was possibly waiting for good days so he could whip out a few of his favourite Elvis numbers.
Hearing the shotgun, the other aliens in the hood rush to the house. Regan cranks up the volume on the amplifier to “Are You Nuts?” and Evelyn pumps her shotgun to prepare herself for the showdown, and the film ends. I believe that the amp would be enough to kill a few of them while the others would flee. The remainder of the family would be safe for a while until Evelyn’s next baby. Oh wait, no, the family would actually be safe now on. If there were to be a sequel to this film, it would need to be centered on how Evelyn has Lee’s sperm sample in cold storage, and she artificially inseminates herself.
Barry is a technologist who helps start-ups build successful products. His love for movies and production has led him to write his well-received film explanation and analysis articles to help everyone appreciate the films better. He’s regularly available for a chat conversation on his website and consults on storyboarding from time to time.
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