A Quiet Place & The Florida Project

A Quiet Place – I have a confession to make. I am not a horror movie fan, and I have for most of my life avoided scary movies. However, I decided that it would be time to try A Quiet Place, a movie I had been secretly wanting to watch for awhile. In this post-apocalyptic world, the monster can hear you but cannot see, so tranquil peace is the mode of survival. What easily could have become a gimmick turns into a thematic and nail-biting thriller, using the circumstances of the world to explore the human condition rather than playing it for cheap thrills. Millicent Simmons is terrific is Regan, and John Kransinski does a great job as director, showing the pain and grief that families must go through who have lost everything. It is not a perfect movie, but a very good one nonetheless that uses its world to examine the human condition, rather than play the gimmick for cheap thrills. 9/10

The Florida Project – The story of a family on the brink of poverty through the eyes of six year old Moonie is so beautiful and brilliant it is hard to explain why without making it seem slightly ridiculous. Taking place in the outskirts of Disneyworld, many people live in motels because they cannot afford elsewhere. Rather than try to make overarching generalizations, director Sean Baker looks at individuals with care and purpose, showcasing their best and worst selves in a whimsical and beautiful way. The one character I found particularly striking was Moonie’s mother Halley, and how often she puts herself above others. This is a movie that is fun, hilarious and ludicrous, while also having a lot to say about consequences. Even in their whimsical adventures, Moonie’s behavior and most importantly Halley’s selfishness all have consequences, and eventually can lead to heartbreak. Willem Defoe is terrific as Bobby the manager, showing the conflict between caring for people and the trouble they can bring him and Brooklyn Prince is terrific as Moonie. For anyone looking for a great watch this is definitely worth your time. 9.3/10

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