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A Quiet Place (2018)

Discussion in 'Movies' started by Tino, Mar 11, 2018.

  1. Colin Jacobson

    Colin Jacobson Lead Actor

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    Fair enough. I gotta think about "to spoil or not to spoil?" when I write plot synopses for my reviews, so I was torn about whether to mention that event when I do so.

    That said, I don't think the event is important to mention in a plot synopsis. You can summarize the movie without having to discuss that particular event - or many of the other subsequent material.

    Some movies require semi-detailed synopses to convey what they're about, but this one can be broken down to the basics - "family hides from deadly creatures with super-sensitive hearing" pretty much sums up everything you need to know...
     
  2. Colin Jacobson

    Colin Jacobson Lead Actor

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    Well, as I noted when I first posted, I think a good argument can be made that something that happens so early in the movie isn't a true "spoiler".

    This one is on the edge - it's not like giving away the ending but it's still a (theoretically) unexpected event that just happens to occur early in the film...
     
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  3. Josh Steinberg

    Josh Steinberg Executive Producer
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    For what it's worth, the New York Times review mentions this occurrence in the first and second paragraphs of their review.

    I think it's a tough call. Normally most people would say anything in the first ten minutes of a movie is fair game for discussion. The way the Times mentions it, it doesn't strike me as gratuitous or ruining the movie for the sake of being spoilsports - it mentions it as a selling point of the movie, to suggest how high the stakes are for individual characters and how the movie has the courage of its convictions by following situations to their logical conclusions.

    I think the moment being described is also more or less shown in one of the trailers which I think makes it more fair game for discussion.

    That said, it does me no harm to talk around it, so I have no qualms with keeping quiet. But hypothetically speaking, if I had never seen the movie before and had been sent the disc to review, I likely would have mentioned it in my review as part of setting up what the film is about.
     
  4. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    That would bother me if I was reading your review and haven't seen the film.
     
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  5. Josh Steinberg

    Josh Steinberg Executive Producer
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    I understand and respect that, but I also think a legitimate journalistic/critical argument can be made that the opening sequence both establishes the "rules" for this world as well as the themes and stakes that the film will explore in the next 90 minutes, and that it essentially serves as a prologue for all that follows. By showing that scene in the trailers, it would appear that the studio would agree with that position.

    There are a lot of films that dangle the potential of danger as a lure to get people in, but then never actually show any consequences as the film progresses. Most movies like this wouldn't allow the kid to die, and would probably open themselves up to potential plot holes by bending over backwards to put the kid in danger and then all too conveniently getting him out of it. I think it's useful information to know about the film that if it puts a character in danger, it won't reflexively reach for an easy way out to save that character. The filmmakers set the rules for this world and then allowed those rules to play out as advertised. I think that's useful information to include in a review.

    I'm also a guy that generally does not read reviews until after I've seen the movie, because I realize that the reviewer may need to mention something in order to make their points and prove their thesis that I'd prefer not to know in advance.

    Had I been marketing or reviewing this film, my approach would have been to use everything from that opening prologue to sell the movie, but would have revealed absolutely nothing that came after. I honestly would think of
    Blunt's pregnancy and bathtub delivery
    as a much bigger spoiler, but the entire ad campaign is built around those moments.

    I haven't read any critical reviews of this film outside of the NYT but am curious how many other traditional reviewers from legitimate outlets also made the same call. It does not appear that the studio requested this information to be held back, as reviewers typically site those restrictions when they occur.
     
  6. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    I have to be honest with you. If I haven't seen the film already, I generally don't read disc reviews outlining of the movie. Furthermore, much of the time I don't read many movie outlines in disc reviews. I'm interested in the quality of the audio and video presentations. Any bonus material worth talking about. I found my taste in film is not aligned with many disc reviewers on line so I don't bother reading their comments about the film itself except for a select few reviewers that I usually agree with film-wise.
     
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  7. Tino

    Tino Executive Producer
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    I NEVER bother reading reviews of the actual film itself when reading Blu ray reviews. I’m ONLY interested in the technical specs and extras. I mean that’s why I’m actually reading the “review” in the first place. It’s a DISC review after all. IMHO of course.
     
  8. Sam Posten

    Sam Posten Moderator
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  9. TonyD

    TonyD Who do we think I am?
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    I usually skip the part of movie reviews that outLine the plot and story.
    Mostly because they don’t know how to do it without telling you what the entire movie is about.

    I don’t need a play by play of a movie in a movie review, just give me the basic premise and that’s enough.

    The trailers for AQP did not reveal what the final result of the little boy is, it shows you that something is about to happen but not what actually happens and I’d be seriously annoyed if I read a review that gave that up before seeing the movie.

    If you can’t write a review without giving important things of the movie away then you aren’t good at writing reviews.
     
  10. Colin Jacobson

    Colin Jacobson Lead Actor

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    Many moons ago when I was still new to the world of disc reviewing, I wanted to abandon the movie review part. Given that most of the reviews covered movies that'd already been out for a while, it seemed semi-pointless - I figured most readers were there for my thoughts about picture/audio/extras quality.

    Nope - turns out a LOT of people wanted to read the movie reviews! I would've loved to bail on that part - it's a lot more work to review a movie than just to comment on picture/sound/extras - but I gotta give the people what they want! :D
     
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  11. Colin Jacobson

    Colin Jacobson Lead Actor

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    Every once in a while, I feel the need to discuss spoilers in a review because those spoilers are a crucial reason I like or dislike the film. This is rare, but sometimes I can't adequately cover my opinion without a discussion of that material.

    When I first started, I didn't write synopses at all - my webmaster plopped a studio-provided overview at the top, so I didn't bother.

    Eventually, I decided that one-line blurb wasn't enough so I began to compose my own - and tended to go overboard. I look back at some of my overly-detailed synopses and wonder why I felt the need to say so much!

    Now I try to keep synopses to two paragraphs and to offer a basic introduction.

    In the case of "Quiet Place", I'd say this:

    "Mysterious creatures lay waste to the planet and decimate most of the world's population. Protected by virtually impenetrable armor, these monsters can't see but they locate their prey via super-sensitive hearing.

    Headed by father Lee (John Krasinski) and mother Evelyn (Emily Blunt). the Abbott family manage to stay alive via an abundance of caution - and near-constant silence. We follow their attempts to remain safe in the face of new challenges."

    Seems to me that sums up the basics but leaves out spoilers, no?
     
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  12. Tino

    Tino Executive Producer
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    I’m very sensitive to spoilers of any kind so to me that first paragraph is full of spoilers.

    Second paragraph is fine.
     
  13. TonyD

    TonyD Who do we think I am?
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    I think it was a perfect synopsis.

    Didn’t give anything that wasn’t known going in.
     
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  14. Colin Jacobson

    Colin Jacobson Lead Actor

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    I disagree that there are spoilers in that paragraph. It's basic story information - heck, I think my synopsis offers fewer "spoilers" than the trailers did!

    I guess we all have a different idea of what constitutes a "spoiler". Maybe you'd prefer "something happens to someone" as a plot synopsis? :D
     
  15. Colin Jacobson

    Colin Jacobson Lead Actor

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    That's another area of discussion: is a plot point a 'spoiler' if it appears in the trailer?

    Some trailers give away far too much. I still recall how little plot information Zemeckis left out of the trailer for "Contact" - there's like 20% of the film that the ads didn't cover!

    So if a plot point appears in a trailer, does that make it fair game for a spoiler-free synopsis, or should the "prudent critic" refuse to endorse the trailer's over-revealing ways?
     
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  16. Josh Steinberg

    Josh Steinberg Executive Producer
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    I think for most movies, discussing the plot that the first half hour or so lays out lays enough groundwork to analyze and critique the themes and execution without blowing all the narrative surprises.

    There are exceptions to that half hour informal rule - the first half hour of "2001: A Space Odyssey" doesn't even get you up to the first line of dialogue, and not enough of the story has happened yet at that point to give an accurate summation of the entire film.

    I think the opening of A Quiet Place is actually the perfect amount of detail. If you've liked that first sequence or are intrigued by a description of it, you'll likely be as interested in everything that follows. If that opening doesn't work for you, the rest of the movie probably won't either.
     
  17. Tino

    Tino Executive Producer
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    Well we’ll agree to disagree again Colin. No surprise there.:P

    I prefer as little info as possible. If you ended your second paragraph with “against an unknown threat” that would have been the perfect synopsis for me.
     
  18. Message #78 of 143 Apr 10, 2018
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2018
    Lou Sytsma

    Lou Sytsma Producer

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    A Quiet Place is FANTASTIC!

    A horror movie like this only comes along every ten years or so.
     
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  19. Colin Jacobson

    Colin Jacobson Lead Actor

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    But it isn't an "unknown threat" - they know exactly what the threat is and behave accordingly.

    I also like to have little information, but we need to have some concrete info about a plot, and I think the description of the creatures is an important part in this case...
     
  20. Message #80 of 143 Apr 11, 2018
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2018
    Tino

    Tino Executive Producer
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    Why do we need concrete info?? Like I said your second paragraph was virtually perfect.

    And it is an unknown threat to ME. I knew none of the points in your first paragraph before seeing the film. To me they are spoilers. Regardless if they were in a trailer or not.
     

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