The Quiet provocatively exploits two sense impairments to produce a misdirected mess. Lying is bad. Lies are terrible. Be like Abraham Lincoln, and don’t ever lie. It seems every single character in this psychological thriller were riddled with fabrications. Some major catastrophes, others little white lies. A “deaf” and “mute” girl (I use the terms loosely...) is sent to move in with her Godparents after the accidental death of her father. This family though, despite displaying an ounce of normality with their pubescent teenage daughter, have a parasitical dark secret hidden within. Incest. Yes, the disturbed father and the impressionable daughter engage in regular cunnilingus whilst the mother is a prescription drug addict and lightweight alcoholic.
Babbit, mostly known for television credits (more on that later...), clearly had no indication where to direct the story. The social outcasting of Dot seemingly took precedent for the initial opening act, with stereotypical high school hierarchies banishing her for being a “freak”. Then the incest takes centre stage, equipped with some incredibly awkward dialogue one could find in a sleazy pornographic display. “I have a secret for you, daddy!”. Then there’s Connor, a popular kid whom coincidentally has a “thing” for Dot. Commence eye-rolling now. He blurts out his numerous issues, thinking that Dot is unable to hear his problems with chronic masturbation and attention deficit disorder. Some blackmail, rape and a terribly outdated slow-motion death, accompanied with elongated stutters of “shut up”, conclude this heap of mediocrity. Functional, but it’s just a mess.
Characters are unlikeable and carry an endless supply of secrets. Interactions were stilted and awkward, despite some mildly good performances. Falco straight up looks like Ellen DeGeneres if her show was cancelled. Loaded with lesbian undertones without exploring any of those concepts. And finally, the biggest complaint of them all, it’s filmed like a TV soap opera. The undramatic structure, the constant close-up nature of every shot and the innumerable unbalanced moments between campy and serious.
Belle’s body language and facial expression, while subdued, did exude an alluring mystery behind her backstory. Alas, was insufficient to carry a muddled, psychologically-inept and often boring thriller that will surely be forgotten in a day or two. If only the film’s sound was muted, could’ve been an improvement!