Why ‘A Quiet Place Part II’ Showcasing The Invasion Is A Smart Move

A Quiet Place
A Quiet Place Part II looks like it’s going to begin with the alien invasion that happened in the first film’s backstory. Here’s why it’s a great decision for the narrative of the sequel. (Spoilers for the first film ahead, naturally.)


Originally, A Quiet Place was imagined as a one-off, and one that had to make the most of its $17 million to $21 million budget, so a crucial element of the story was pushed to the background: the actual alien invasion that we see the aftermath of throughout the movie. Ultimately, though, that wasn’t as important to the overall narrative – despite the horror movie trappings, the film is, at its core, a family drama about dealing with shared trauma, the death of a child, and sticking together in the most troubling of times. Nonetheless, A Quiet Place performed well above expectations with a total of over $340 million, giving Paramount the kind of hit that they needed after a series of flops and underperformers, so a sequel was put on the cards.


With this sequel, director John Krasinski had more room to ask for a larger budget for the follow-up, and the ads for the movie have made that abundantly clear with a larger cast and a bigger VFX budget. The very first trailer for the movie clearly showcased this by highlighting that the movie would start with a flashback to the day that the monsters first attacked the small town. In case you haven’t seen it yet, take a look below:



The subsequent Super Bowl LVI ad showcased more of the sequence, revealing that Krasinski’s character would be appearing in the flashback sequence. Check it out below:



While the decision to show the offscreen initial incident that makes the A Quiet Place setting the way that it is could typically be chalked up to going through the motions of adding spectacle to a sequel, I think that it’s actually quite justified in this case. The first movie was about a family, and while that trend appears to be continuing for the sequel, it’s also clear that it’s going to explore the greater implications of a world where most surviving people are scavengers that have to be very conscious about the noise that they make. We followed one family’s very specific precautions to stop themselves from being slain by monsters, but their way isn’t the only way. In order to ensure the survival of the human race, it will take more than family working together.


The move also gives Krasinski, who has largely been known for acting in comedies (namely The Office), a window to showcase his potential as a dramatic actor and director. Since his character very clearly died at the end of A Quiet Place, it stands to reason that he can’t show up at any point after his heroic sacrifice to save his kids. And since the death of one of the family’s children was shown to be intensely traumatic for the survivors, Krasinski’s character needs some kind of a presence for his story to have a continuing impact in the sequel. Other flashbacks could also be on the table, but the narrative going forward is going to be focused on Emily Blunt’s character and her children.


In any case, this is a good creative decision all-around, and delving into the past allows for the backstories of the new survivors (played by Cillian Murphy and Djimon Hounsou) to be shown in full, presumably making for a better overall narrative that can really flesh out this setting. We’ll be sure to find out when the sequel to 2018’s breakout original movie arrives next month.


A Quiet Place Part II will be released on March 20, 2020.