Everyone loves a good horror, and even those who say they don’t derive any joy from the jumps and thrills of a good scary flick will always be the first ones to scream the house down and giggle afterwards when you stick one on.
Some say we’re living in a golden age of horror, what with Stephen King films enjoying a renaissance, as well as the plethora of interesting indie horrors coming from studios like A24.
We’ve had Hereditary, we’ve had It Comes At Night, and we’ve had The Witch – all of these pieces of cinema will surely go down as some of the best examples of modern horror.
But there’s another name among that list, which deserves just as much praise, though seems to get lost in the conversation of the weightier films.
Now is the time to redress this atrocity, however, because the film in question, Don’t Breathe, has just dropped on Netflix, and it’s truly nerve-shattering.
Here’s the synopsis:
Rocky, a young woman wanting to start a better life for her and her sister, agrees to take part in the robbery of a house owned by a wealthy blind man with her boyfriend, Money, and their friend, Alex.
But when the blind man turns out to be a more ruthless adversary than he seems, the group must find a way to escape his home before they become his latest victims.
And if you don’t believe me that this is seriously a great film to watch, here’s what film critic, Laura Kern, said when the film was released:
Creating true crawl-under-the-seat, palm-piercing, cover-your-eyes tension is a rare, undervalued cinematic art. There’s certainly no shortage of filmmakers who give it a try, but only a select few would make Hitchcock proud…
Though relatively new to the game, Fede Alvarez is already one of those select few, quickly proving himself a standout master of suspense.
Jia Tolentino of The New Yorker sums it up perfectly:
Between the jolts come a series of life-or-death silences: a breath from the burglars means the blind man will know where to shoot.
In my theatre, the audience started giddily unravelling about halfway through. I kept involuntarily burbling my breath out, as if I were releasing tension from the face in a yoga class; at one point, when the hapless Alex lands unconscious on a slowly cracking skylight, a man behind me shouted chummily, as if to a girlfriend who was stuck in a tiresome relationship, ‘Bitch, I am telling you, you need to get out right now!’
This film is one to put on your ‘to-watch’ list, but do so at your peril. Because it will stick with you for days.
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