One of our aims when we set up Last Movie Outpost a couple of years ago, as a troop of movie fans feeling like we didn’t really have an online home, was to build a community. It looks like it might be working, with the roster of valued Outposters growing every day. We also know we have a LOT of lurkers. There are tens of thousands of unique regular visitors who keep returning but never comment. One has broken cover to review Speak No Evil (2022).
Lea Ann is a self-confessed lurker who is also a friend of our very own Shawn Thompson. This is disturbing news. We didn’t think he had any friends outside of us and his gun collection.
If you are lurking out there, why not be brave and introduce yourself in the Disqus below? Or, you could go large like Lea Ann and introduce yourself via a contribution. You know how we love a contribution around here. Send them in to [email protected] and help the community grow.
Here is Lea Ann.
Speak No Evil
When I was a kid, I remember only two major vacations with my family. Both were to Myrtle Beach, or as locals call it “The Hillbilly Riviera”. The first time we went with another family, and I had other children to play on the beach with. I had a good time on both trips and have fond memories. The vacation depicted in Speak No Evil is one that will produce memories but not of the fond kind for Agnes.
I went into the movie blindly, solely based on a second hand recommendation. The opening shot on a dark wooded road, car headlights breaking through the darkness with disconcerting music sets the tone straight away. We know this isn’t going to be pleasant.
We have the polite Danish family of Louise, Bjorn and their daughter Agnes on vacation in Tuscany. We gather from a few scenes that Bjorn is bored with life and is a bit sensitive. We know that Agnes is attached to a stuffed rabbit that comes into play later in the story.
They meet Dutch family Patrick, Karin and Abel. The adults seem to hit it off over dinner and drinks and a kind of temporary friendship is had during their trip. We learn upon first meeting of Abel that he is a withdrawn child, we later learn the real reason of his shy nature and his unwillingness to speak, he has no tongue.
So over the course of the film we see that Patrick ignores Louise being a vegetarian, Karin insisting Agnes sleep on the floor in Abel’s room, their kind of hostile approach to parenting and some other scenes that the couple just chalks up to difference in culture. One scene in a restaurant is just very awkward and the ride home even worse.
Speak No Evil is a full-on education on what my favorite podcast, My Favorite Murder, means when they say:
Louise and Bjorn put up with a lot from a couple they barely know for the sake of decorum.
Louise wants to leave one night and convinces Bjorn to leave in the morning. The family wakes very early and sneaks quietly out of the house. We think, FINALLY! But here’s where the damn stuffed rabbit comes into play. Agnes forgot it, Louise is all ready to leave it, buy a new one, but hero father Bjorn to the rescue turns around. He instructs his wife and daughter to stay in the car while he will quietly sneak in and find it.
While in the home we see in the car that Agnes just simply misplaced her toy and Louise goes in to find her husband. She walks into Patrick irate over the fact they were just going to leave without saying goodbye. The couples have it out and Louise voices her issues with the couple and their actions. The four seem to make up and the Dutch family convinces them to stay just a bit longer.
Here’s where they screwed up. I’m not going to give away the whole thing, cause honestly you should just go into this film blindly like I did. It’s awkward and uncomfortable to watch as the story unfolds. Lies are discovered and one big lie makes Bjorn realize they need to hit the road.
It all culminates into one of the most gut wrenching and painful things I’ve watched in cinema in a long time. I’m not a parent but the dread these characters are feeling is conveyed very well in the final scenes of this movie. It leads up to a finale that was not only violent and disturbing but to me very original and unexpected.
You aren’t going to walk away from this movie with a good feeling and you aren’t supposed to.
I wish Hollywood would buy a clue from foreign films. We need more movies like Speak No Evil. Would I watch it again? No. But do I recommend it? Yes.
Do yourself a favor and watch. View it as a cautionary tale.