Somewhere Quiet

Somewhere Quiet
Somewhere Quiet
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Somewhere Quiet was written and directed by Olivia West Lloyd. It looks at the aftermath of a Final Girl’s survival. Yes, she may have lived through something traumatic; however, this movie asks how that might have changed her. Can one return to life as normal after such horror? What did it do to them, and what does it mean for their interactions with others? Somewhere Quiet tries to answer some of these questions — but not in the way you think. Featuring a powerful performance from Jennifer Kim, this slow-burn thriller driven by characters asks us to consider what is real and what is imagined.

Meg (Jennifer Kim) is taken to her husband Scott’s (Kentucker Audley) family home following her escape from a kidnapping several months prior. Her attempts at relaxation and processing what happened are interrupted by the paranoia she starts feeling after meeting her spouse’s dismissive cousin (Marin Ireland), who seems too close for comfort. Who was really behind Meg’s abduction begins now mattering less than whether or not Scott has been honest with his wife about any part of it.

Somewhere Quiet starts at its ending; Meg escapes early on, sending herself into survival mode that brings her story full circle — especially since the lack of trust embodied throughout infects everything eventually. Given that we’re seeing things through Meg’s eyes, we’re thrown into her world where flight feels right immediately. In making Meg an unreliable narrator whose reactions and trauma shape what we’re shown but not told,Lloyd places us thoughtfully beside her as events unfold around them both so neither can discern quite easily between fact and fiction: at any given moment it becomes near impossible figuring out which parts are real versus imagined ones until later on.

Meg is a very compassionate person who’s experienced a lot lately, and Jennifer Kim does an amazing job of showing her growing fear and dissatisfaction. One second she’s reflective, the next she’s freaking out — her eyes wander so much that you can practically see the wheels turning in her head. What makes Kim’s performance so impressive is the slow-burn nature of it all, as she builds off one scene to the next. Marin Ireland is wild by comparison. An antagonist for Meg, Ireland’s character is intentionally unlikable, but the actress clearly has a blast playing up that side of things and setting Meg off in ways that ring all her internal alarms. The best scenes are when their characters are together.

Somewhere Quiet deals with what happens after you survive a kidnapping, yes, but also all the little indignities — or microaggressions — that Meg must endure while dealing with this new normal. It’s uncomfortable and upsetting at times; however, it remains compelling throughout since it never loses sight of its commitment to understanding where Meg is coming from mentally and how worried we should be for her.

“Somewhere Quiet” premiered at 2023 Tribeca Film Festival (TFF). The movie lasts 98 minutes long and has no rating yet.

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