There are a couple things that make A Quiet Place Part II SLIGHTLY superior than its predecessor: the emphasis on evoking emotion is a bit more refrained (until that ending), the directing is marginally bolder, and Cillian Murphy plays the John Krasinski role better than, well, John Krasinski had. But, if you also took part in the minority crowd of A Quiet Place (2018)’s soy-boy haters like the prude writing this review, the sequel is definitely not going to win you over, as it falls into the exact same traps that made the original appear so phony.
Whether it’s breaking the rules that it had established in Part I, concocting last minute saves to continuously remind us that our victims are glaringly plot-protected by the script, or forcing characters to commit actions that make zero sense, as if they’ve periodically become mind-controlled by head-scratching puppet masters (the writers) finding shortcut ways to stir conflict, A Quiet Place Part II fails as a tension-getter when it comes to my personal experience with it. There’s, furthermore, no bigger significance behind this movie that could possibly justify the manipulative tricks that it pulls to broadcast its desired messages for the audience. It wants to dive into themes like unity, pessimism, and fortitude in light of apocalypse, and sometimes they actually feel earned, especially in the sequences where actors are forced to use their faces rather than their expressive voices as emotional communicators, but other times they keep pushing and pushing these notions to doubtful places within the scenario-scheming for where they seriously don’t need to go to make viewers understand or admire. The conveniencing only accumulates and progressively gets worse because of this, until it punctures itself to death by the conclusion with a belabored metaphor birthed from a series of coincidences more unfathomable than actual flesh-eating monsters landing on our soil today. The symbolism once again wants to flex its immoderate guises repeatedly in sacrifice for the level of realism that the film clearly also wants to succeed in but tonally can’t compromise with.
What I’ve gathered from these past two horror attempts is that Kransisnski is genuinely a competent director, and I want to enjoy his work in the future, but I think he needs to hire himself a solo writer before that can happen.
“A Quiet Place Part II” will be released in theaters May 28.