Saturday, September 3, 2016

Streaming Spotlight: Hush - Movie Review

Well it is an interesting concept for a thriller.
Hush starring Kate Siegal, John Gallagher Jr. and directed by Mike Flanagan. Hush was released earlier this year as a Netflix original film. The movie is a standard suspense thriller with a unique twist. The main heroine is deaf. This adds more suspense to many of the scenarios of the film. With another suspense thriller, Don’t Breathe, being released, which has a blind man as the main villain, I thought checking out this movie would be timely. Hush is a simple movie, but effective in the story it wants to tell.

The movie starts with a basic setup. We learn the layout of the house the main character Maddie lives in. We see many of the callbacks which will be used later in the film for Maddie’s protection and survival. The initial reveal of Maddie being deaf is handled well within the film. The opening shot sequence is well done and brings you into the movie. We get some basic information about Maddie and her neighbor. The film quickly progresses past the opening and builds tension and suspense.
The antagonist is quickly introduced and he is for the first part of the film frightening. You never do find out his motivations, other than he is a psychopath who wants to kill people. This works for these types of movies, but I do wish he would have left the mask on the entire movie. They tried at first it seemed to establish him as a Michael Myers or Jason. I think the film would have been even more terrifying without him ever saying a word. We didn’t get this and John Gallagher Jr. did a good job of playing the demented villain for the film. I believed he was crazy and capable of the things he did in the movie.

Kate Siegal also does a good job in the movie playing a person trapped in her house. She plays every emotion well and you do believe the terror she feels throughout the film. I liked most of the ideas she had to escape and they felt natural to the story. There were a few times where Maddie decides on a course of action which doesn’t make sense. This is one reason I don’t usually like this types of films. I don’t understand when characters make ludicrous decisions just to further a plot or scenario. Hush only did this with Maddie to a minor degree, and one could equate some of the poor decisions to the character’s stress.

The main issue I did have with the film was the generic way the second half of the story developed. The setup with Maddie was great, and the added element of her being deaf built on the tension and plot. Flanagan seemed to go away from the concept during the second half of film and fell into standard suspense tropes. I was hoping Maddie would turn the situation on its head and start terrorizing the attacker. This might have been wishful thinking, but it’s what I was hoping for.

The ending still had me guessing at the conclusion. I wasn’t sure which way they were going to go with. For a fairly standard second half of a movie the ending execution was well done to still have me guessing. I don’t want to say too much more than this other than it did have me wondering what the overall ending of the film would be. The scenarios they set up during the movie were done so you didn’t know the eventual conclusion.

Hush is a very competently made suspense horror thriller. The tension ramps up when it’s supposed too, and the bad guy is sufficiently creepy to evoke terror. The added setup of the main character being deaf was good for the start of the movie, but doesn’t play as much into the ending. The movie is worth watching if you enjoy a suspenseful movie, just don’t expect anything too out of the ordinary in the story. For a movie released on Netflix I feel it has a higher quality than many of the films released in theaters today. It’s worth checking out if you have ninety minutes to kill and want to be entertained.

Have you checked out Hush on Netflix? If you have what did you think? What is your favorite Netflix original content? They have a bunch to choose from. Comment and let me know. Mine probably would have to be Stranger Things after binging that series. 

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