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Category:    Home > Reviews > Horror > Supernatural > Thriller > British > The Quiet Ones (2014/Hammer/Lionsgate Blu-ray)

The Quiet Ones (2014/Hammer/Lionsgate Blu-ray)

Picture: B+ Sound: B+ Extras: B Film: B-

The Quiet Ones is a British horror film that should have went wider in the US and didn't for some odd reason. It's a spooky little supernatural tale based off true events and is produced by the infamous Hammer Studio. Based on true events, the film stars Jarred Harris as a chain smoking Oxford University professor who is obsessed with the supernatural and wants to prove the existence of the paranormal by extreme measures if necessary. With a small team of three students, they intensely study a young girl who is very disturbed and put her in isolation with the hope to prove that her powers are otherworldly. Taking place in the 1970s, the film is loosely based on the Philip experiment, a 1972 parapsychology experiment conducted in Toronto.

Employing some unique uses of old film stock (or imitations thereof, i.e. Fuji, Agfa or Ektachrome) mixed with new the cinematography is great and adds a great period feel to the film and makes it a little more frightening then your typical attempt at a ghost movie but never quite reaches the heights of The Conjuring.

Oxford, 1970s: A student attends the class of college professor, Coupland (Jarred Harris), who wishes to prove there is no supernatural. He shows a video of a possessed boy and explains that research will be done to find a cure for this kind of disease. One of his students, Brian McNeil (Sam Claflin), is invited to film the experiment process and joins Coupland, his two assistants Krissi (Erin Richards) and Harry (Rory Fleck-Byrne) and their subject Jane Harper (Olivia Cooke), a young woman who generates strange phenomena and has been abandoned. Jane is generally kept locked in a room with loud rock music playing during the daytime to prevent her from sleeping in the hopes that the psychological agitation will result in increased activity but succeeds more at upsetting the neighbors with all of the commotion.

Coupland and his assistants settle in an isolated house in the countryside to keep experimenting on Jane. Jane's negative energy takes the form of Evey, an infant doll-like creature only Jane sees. Jane is then given a physical doll to put her negative energy in to destroy it. The further the researchers drive Jane to insanity with their methods, the stranger things get around the house. Brian is upset by the way Jane is treated and the lack of ethics in the experiment. Evey's apparitions become increasingly aggressive and Jane begins to self-harm. Things get more and more creepy as the film progresses to which I won't spoil but I have to say the final scenes aren't half bad.

The sound and picture on the disc are pretty superb with a 1080p high definition image in the 1.85:1 aspect ratio of the original exhibition captures the superb picture quality. The DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) lossless track in 5.1 is crisp and clear and enhances the experiments with some scenes that are quiet and then loud then creepy things start to happen. Also on the disc is a Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital track and an English SDH track and Subtitles in English and Spanish.

Extras on the disc aren't half bad - Commentary with the Director and Producer, Welcome to the Experiment: Making The Quiet Ones Documentary, An Ominous Opening Featurette, Deleted Scenes, and Outtakes.

All in all, if you are a fan of the paranormal and are looking for something creepy to watch then this film is definitely worth a gander. It's by no means a classic but is more entertaining than Hammer's previous effort, The Woman in Black.

- James Harland Lockhart V



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