No One Will Save You

No One Will Save You
No One Will Save You
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If A Quiet Place had an on-screen cousin, it would be No One Will Save You. There is hardly any dialogue in Hulu’s captivating new alien invasion drama, which only heightens the chilling suspense and places the weight of the film on Kaitlyn Dever. Here, the Booksmart and Ticket to Paradise star delivers a haunting performance as Brynn Adams, a young woman whose traumatic history resurfaces after her house is invaded by a mysterious extraterrestrial.

Written and directed by Brian Duffield (Cocaine Bear), this movie is destined to become a cult favorite. An alien invasion, light-beaming extraterrestrials up into their spaceship, frenzied run-for-your-life scenes — and some of the creepiest aliens you’ve ever seen that you’ll want to keep seeing. Dane Rhodes, Lauren L. Murray, Geraldine Singer and Elizabeth Kaluev also star in the film, but this show belongs to Dever from start to finish. No One Will Save You conjures Panic Room’s intensity with War of the Worlds’ adrenaline rush but remains its own creative beast.

It’s amazing that Disney sent this thrilling gem over to Hulu. You get the feeling it could have held its own at the box office — but hey, we’re just happy it arrived at all. It’s nice to watch a sci-fi thriller that follows through on its single-minded mission statement. No One Will Save You is about one person who must fight for her life through some scary stuff.

Filmmaker Brian Duffield does an excellent job establishing Brynn’s world for us here. She keeps to herself; she’s quiet; her life is simple. She sews dresses for her online store; her pet project — an elaborate model village — takes up much of her old home; she feeds birds during visits to her mother’s grave here and there; you get the sense she wants it this way. And she’s a silent gal, but not because she’s closed off; it’s just that very few people want to talk to her. Ah, what happened in Brynn’s past, we wonder — especially after somebody spits on her when she’s out in public.

Duffield skips over any plot-thickening introductions and lets the terror begin around 20 minutes into this 83-minute movie. When Brynn starts getting the sense that someone has broken into her house, she soon discovers it’s not someone — it’s something. Are her eyes playing tricks on her? Is that an alien-alien she sees down there? Yes indeed, and how fun this whole sequence is as Duffield lets it all play out in Brynn’s pad. The filmmaker uses light well here, particularly with close-ups of Dever (this girl can “act” with those great facial expressions), which generate ample suspense. Also questions. Why has this alien (or aliens?) shown up, and does anybody else know about it?

Your curiosity about Brynn’s past and how she got here in life are quickly tabled … because ALIENS! The director captures the terror of it all so well here and as Brynn manages to dodge a life-ender or two eventually — of course — she wants to keep poking around.

Among the creative components that work best in this movie are how the alien sound and how they look are depicted by a director. Yes, it’s a big reveal; early on actually. And yes, these alien creatures are as scary as you would think even though they’re taken from a 1950s alien look-book. Duffield gives us aliens that don’t look like a standard alien which is what makes them so creepy — and their expressions aren’t exactly comforting either. The aliens’ “flying saucer” even has that Look What We Found At Roswell vibe, and those tractor beams? Not cheesy at all, actually; feeds into the overall terror here.

But as the film moves deeper into its final sequences (also where Brynn must confront something about her past — unsettling is an understatement), it becomes unclear whether or not what she’s dealing with now is related to then. It’s unclear for her; it’s unclear for us too. This is where Duffield takes a breath with the movie before sending Brynn through an emotional rollercoaster of terrifying face-offs she can’t handle or understand. These aliens aren’t your typical Star Trek folk — civilized peeps who know better than to kill each other over territory disputes or misunderstandings about resources.

In addition to giving audiences glimpses of what’s going on inside these creatures’ heads (clearly they’re also trying to figure out something deeper here — about Brynn?), the director shows us 15 minutes of No One Will Save You that feel like traditional sci-fi conclusions but don’t detract from his intention with this story altogether: The horror has got to stop sometime… and anyone could make it out alive at this point. Nobody’s safe anymore among these extraterrestrials! Fun fact: only three people die during this entire film — two humans killed accidentally while in contact with one another due to human error (spoiler alert) plus one alien who takes too many bullets for its own good. It’s hard to say who deserved it more.

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