SXSW Film 2016 Review: HUSH

By Liz Lopez

Rating: B+

There is plenty of home invasion horror films that I have seen during the several years that I have been writing about films and just when I think they can be predictable, another one arrives that leaves me a little bit unsettled when the story is tweaked a bit from the usual. In the horror thriller, Hush, the scenes of the gal pals hanging around one evening is sweet and usual, especially with the neighbor being so supportive of a young single author, Maddie Young (Kate Siegel). Maddie lives on her own in a remote part of town with plenty of woods around, despite her hearing loss as an adolescent. Shortly after they depart and the evening seems to be winding down for both, a horrific turn of events begin and this is about the time audiences might start nail biting.

For anyone who did not view this film during the festival, or the brief theatrical release it had in Austin, I won’t write the spoilers. I wholeheartedly recommend this film. The running time is 87 minutes, but it certainly feels much longer as the audience anticipates the next move Maddie decides to take this one long night of unexpected company.  Hush made its World Premiere at the SXSW Film Festival on Saturday, March 12th in the Midnighters category, with two subsequent public screenings during the festival. Austin audiences were able to view the film in theaters before it became available globally on Netflix as of April 8th.

Directed by Mike Flanagan (Oculus), Siegel penned the script with him.  The film also stars John Gallagher Jr. (The Newsroom), Michael Trucco (Battlestar Galactica) and Samantha Sloyan (Grey’s Anatomy). Intrepid Pictures’ Trevor Macy and Blumhouse Productions’ Jason Blum produced the film, with Michael J. Fourticq Sr., Jeanette Brill, Kate Lumpkin and Couper Samuelson executive producing.

Source: Blumhouse Productions, Intrepid Pictures

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