Recommended viewing situation:
Home alone with all the doors and windows unlocked.
Running Time: 81 minutes.
Format: Digital Film.
Director: Mike Flanagan.
Writer: Mike Flanagan, Kate Siegel.
Cinematographer: James Kniest.
There is nothing quite like a good psychological horror and if you already have the fear of losing your hearing and being alone in the woods then Hush (2016) is the perfect late night lone watch. It follows a deaf writer, Maddie (Kate Siegel) who has retreated from society. Now living in a secluded house in the woods, an evening of terror unfurls as a psychotic masked man becomes fascinated with her.
Panic plants itself as you watch friend and neighbour, Sarah (Samantha Sloyan), brutally stabbed to death just a few feet away from our leading lady and co-writer Kate Siegel. It is then when the killer, credited only as Man (John Gallgher Jr), realises that Maddie is deaf and that he can use that to his advantage. Although the entire film is riddled with hand cramping, pillow grabbing moments, the first seconds when Maddie realises that she is not alone are by far the most terrifying.
What could be whittled down to a simple game of cat and mouse, this home invasion thriller is represented with a quick and impressive narrative, a delectable soundtrack of noises and a score you will never want to hear again. Altogether, the film manages to give its audience an insight into what it is like to have the brain of a writer in a panicked situation. It is simple but stands on its own terms, even at 81 minutes it feels uncomfortably long. I have my own qualms with the ending of this film, as I do most horrors, but I think Hush is one of those stories that you are better off watching and not knowing where the film is taking you. I will say that it kept me on edge, eyes on the screen and shocked when I thought the narrative had done all it could.
Having premiered at South-by-South West in early 2016, this heart-pounding thriller was then released on Netflix later in the year. With a low budget and a small cast, Hush manages to bring a new dimension to silence and scares its audience into never leaving the sofa.