Thursday, April 21, 2016

What's On Netflix?: HUSH

Welcome to another installment of What's On Netflix?, where we pick out a film currently playing on Netflix and review it for the fans.  This week's choice is the horror thriller...HUSH.

When I first heard about this film, it grabbed my attention instantly.  It reminded me of The Strangers, The Purge, or You're Next, all of which are home invasion horror films that I truly enjoy, but this one has a much more interesting twist.  It follows Maddie, a deaf woman living in isolation while writing her next book, who is terrorized by a man in a mask.  The idea of the protagonist being deaf really intrigued me.  How could she possibly survive when she can't hear the killer coming?

Writer and director Mike Flanagan took the very common home invasion story and was able to keep me engaged throughout.  The tension was insane!  Large portions of this film have no dialogue, but the performances and direction create a riveting story.  Flanagan most recently wrote and directed the horror films Oculus and Before I Wake, but Hush is his first time writing with his wife, and star of the film, Kate Siegel, who makes her writing debut with this film.

The entire film only consisted of five characters, three of which you only see briefly.  The two main characters, Maddie (played by Kate Siegel) and The Man (played by John Gallagher Jr.), do a great job playing off one another, even though they're rarely in the same room together.  I was also really glad to see Michael Trucco (Battlestar Galactica, How I Met Your Mother) pop up briefly.

This was a very unique take on the home invasion horror film, and to be honest, if it wasn't for the addition of a deaf protagonist, the film would've probably felt generic.  Most of the scenes where the killer is there, but Maddie doesn't notice him, are some of the creepiest parts of the film.  To think that a psychopath could be right behind you and you would even know is scary thought, and it's that fear that makes this film work.

The director kept the film to a short 81 minutes, which really helped it to not drag on.  The pacing was done very well, never dragging on.  It even had a very satisfying ending, which made me very happy to see.  This is one of the better horror films I've seen in a while, and if you enjoy the genre, and are looking for something with a bit of a twist, I would highly recommend checking this one out.

The Merc's Score: 8/10

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