Super effective thriller, with real emotion, real impact. No underlying message about religion or anything like that. just a family trying to survive.
It's going to be a very familiar environment to anyone that consumes modern media. There will be wisps of living in the world of The Walking Dead and such. I'm sure at more than one point, you will be reminded of Signs with Mel Gibson, but mostly you'll be wondering why they cast that girl as the daughter when she looks nothing like either parent.
One thing I'm very thankful for is that we've figured out how to really tap into John Krasinski's talent. Give him a role where he doesn't say anything above a whisper-level. He is very convincing as a desperate father trying to keep his family alive. It's the first time I've ever seen him successfully 'act' and look forward to seeing more. His voice is just so familiar that it'll be tough for him in other roles but in this, he's perfect.
You'll find yourself frustrated by the clumsiness of children, like any good thriller or horror movie. But mostly you're just AFRAID. You're so, so afraid. You'll find yourself shushing the characters in the movie, it's fantastic.
As an aside, I am going to stop showing up for the pre-show in the movie theatres. 15 minutes before the movie, they are showing a feature on this very movie, including one early pivotal scene that totally ruined the moment for me in the movie. What a terrible idea to show this before a movie.
Apparently the movie has a strong emotional element as well, as there were at least two people near me crying and whimpering at one point. It didn't have this effect on me (I'm always the one crying usually), but colour me impressed that a thriller can hit some people right in the chest like that.
Also, this is directed and co-written by Krasinski?? What's with comedians coming up with amazing thrillers these days? I love it. Want to see more of this for a genre that gets very little love.
Very strongly recommended. it's excellent.
Heart rating: 5 stars (it hits on ALL levels at once. Brilliant)
Brain rating: 4 stars (there's a few gaps for me in the plot. I would think a deaf person would never survive since they have terrible awareness of their sound level. I would think you wouldn't want to get pregnant since having a baby would be like spraying anthrax on your entire family. I would think that kids need constant supervision.). It's still pretty smart though.