“In a film that wheels out the same old horror tropes, The Quiet Ones will certainly impress some, but I doubt it will impress them a great deal.”

Director John Pogue’s The Quiet Ones‘ is a horror saved by a cast who do some splendid work, in yet another tale of possession. Pogue is probably better known for writing the script for the successful 1998 thriller U.S. Marshals than for his last and first directorial effort Quarantine 2: Terminal, another horror film.

The Quiet Ones is supposedly based on true events, and set in 1974, where a young woman is suspected of being possessed and a group of students along with their teacher, plan to investigate. It is believed by Professor Coupland (Jared Harris) supernatural occurrences come solely from the mind and with his students on toe, try to prove his hypothesis. As with everything these days–particularly if it has anything to do with horror–what happened was filmed for posterity, but in about the only actual twist in the film, this footage doesn’t get lost in order for it to even be found.

The Quiet Ones
Directed by
John Pogue
Jared Harris, Sam Claflin, Olivia Cooke
Release Date
25 April 2014
Nav’s Grade: C

Playing Jane Harper–the object of study and person who believes she’s possessed–we have Olivia Cooke, a beautiful young woman who has become almost a household name after 2 seasons playing Emma Decody in the poplular TV show Bates Motel. Jane is voluntarily kept under lock and key after two suicide attempts, with speakers blaring out “Come On Feel The Noise” in order to keep her on edge. This is being done in the hope her mind begins to manifest anything which can be scientifically recorded and examined, with the hope of treating others suffering from similar delusions.

Jared Harris puts on a good performance as the nutty Professor Coupland, who hopes to find a cure for what he believes is all in the mind of people thought to be possessed, however he gets more than he bargains for. Harris is made for roles like these as he demonstrates by breezing through The Quiet Ones, and is probably best remembered playing Captain Mike in The Curious Case of Benjamin Button.

Brian is the guy filming everything and is played by Sam Claflin, an actor who has started to make a name for himself, and who recently co-starred in The Hunger Games: Catching Fire as the flamboyant Finnick Odair. Brian is skeptical of the Professor’s work, thanks to the Professor’s deliberately cruel and unusual treatment of Jane, who Brian sees as a vulnerable and scared young woman, but the Prof only sees as a cross between an experiment and an object of desire.

We have Brian who has an eye for Jane and the Professor who also has an eye on Jane, yet Jane has an eye for Brian, and Krissy (Erin Richards) has more than an eye on the Professor, but Krissy is already dating Harry (Rory Fleck-Byrne) making this a really screwed up experiment! Apart from a crazy love … polygon? the film is pretty uneven, and never properly establishes itself or gains momentum.

It does finish better than it starts and eventually makes for interesting viewing but the story is the weakest part of the film. Minus the story the remainder of the production is solid and if not for such a strong cast who each do exemplary work, I doubt this movie would be half as good. In a film that wheels out the same old horror tropes, The Quiet Ones will certainly impress some, but I doubt it will impress them a great deal. You won’t mind seeing this but you’ll mind even less if you don’t.

Review by Nav Qateel