Home invasion thriller were in abundance at SXSW, and HUSH was one of the most buzzed about after Netflix snatched up the rights. Directed by Mike Flanagan, the movie tells the story of a writer who lives in a secluded house in the forest is stalked by a masked psychotic killer. It checks all the boxes for the standard home invasion story but there’s an extra detail that makes the movie interesting. The woman being stalked is deaf. Think of it as Straw Dogs meets The Strangers — but the victim void of hearing and speaking. It’s a whole other level of terrifying.
The movie’s star, Kate Siegel, co-wrote the thriller with Flanagan and it probably was an outline of actions and scene descriptions considering there is a sparse amount of dialogue from the main character. Siegel’s non-vocal performance as Maddie will make you incredibly anxious while John Gallagher Jr. sheds his normal nice guy persona to show us that he can stretch his psychotic stalker acting muscles.
Hush has all the beats of a good home invasion movie, but is definitely not as blood spattering as its peers. Despite smattering of stabbings, a deadly bow and arrow, and one gruesome scene involving a rock and someone’s skull, the movie is pretty conservative compared to its peers when it comes to tortuous and uber violence — but it works in its favor. Most of the movie is embedded in the fear of what is not heard and Flanagan works with that device without making it a gimmick.
Dino-Ray Ramos watches too much TV and laughs inappropriately during dramatic films. He’s a fan of comedy, podcasts, and comedy podcasts. He’s a reformed comic book geek and thinks “The Goonies” is the best movie of all time. When he isn’t stuffing his face with a burrito, he’s thinking about his next trip to Disneyland.
Dino-Ray Ramos | Staff Writer