A Review of Quiet: A Horror To Behold
Title of Movie: Quiet
Year Released: 2015
Director: Adegboyega Nathan
Screenplay: Inala Felix
Producer: Inala Felix
Run Time: 9:35mins
Lead Actors: Eyemienbai Epipade, Ukah Chinonso, Chukwunulu Amarachi and Okonkwo Emmanuel
The strongest quality of the short film Quiet is its storytelling style. Quiet is approximately eight minutes long and in that time you are shown a harrowing tale of a man who captures women, holds them prisoner, abuses them and ultimately kills them.
The main cast comprises four people – Eyemienbai Epipade, Ukah Chinonso, Chukwunulu Amarachi and Okonkwo Emmanuel – and only three of them talk. The dialogue is brief and to the point, allowing the audience to learn all they need to know without elongating it unnecessarily, or falling into the trap of telling instead of showing. In fact, in the opening scenes, no one speaks at all, and we are able to understand what is happening. Because of this, the result is a film that goes from action to action, horror to horror.
However, though it was only eight minutes long, and maybe because it was only eight minutes long, I came across one or two takes that I felt could have been shortened even further. For example, the scene where one of the prisoners unties the rope from her ankles. We watched her performing this act for too long. Also, there were some things that didn’t add up for me – after the ladies untie themselves, they are then able to leave the room where they were held. It seemed odd that their jailer wouldn’t lock the room and that though one of the inhabitants claimed that she had tried and tried to escape, all that had been holding her back was rope around her wrists and ankles. In her place, I’m certain many of us would have hobbled out of the room, rope or no rope.
The opening scenes are in black and white and the rest is in colour, but even in colour, the filming remains dark, in accordance with the tone of the film, which though tense and chilling is not all that scary. Perhaps because we see the aftermath of the horrific acts done to the women but none of the acts themselves.
When one of the prisoners relates her experience, one is unable to feel the amount of sympathy and fear that one should feel because she relays it in a way that would be appropriate if she had been beaten by her husband or boyfriend, but did not do justice to what she was experiencing.
At the end of the film, it is unclear who made it out, though it did not immediately occur to me that this may have been the director’s intention. If it was, it was a brilliant tool to use.
As horror films go, it didn’t incite fear, but it did incite curiosity. I wanted to know what would happen. And that is essential for an art piece of that kind – that the viewer be nudged to see it through to the end. Felix and Nathan, certainly show potential as filmmakers and will undoubtedly continue to improve.
August 23, 2019