A Quiet Place Can Be Traced Back To A Single Steven Spielberg Scene

Back in the mid and late-'00s, when John Krasinski was mostly known as the guy playing the goofy, sarcastic Jim Halpert on "The Office," it was impossible to imagine him writing, directing, and starring in one of the most successful horror movies in the past decade. "A Quiet Place" was a massive box office hit thanks in part to its unique premise: blind monsters with advanced hearing have taken over the earth, killing every human they find. The survivors we follow months after most of the population are wiped out are a family with a deaf teenage daughter Regan (Millicent Simmonds), which has given them the advantage of already knowing how to communicate through sign language. 

But for Regan, that advantage has a clear downside: although she doesn't need sound to communicate, she also can't hear anything that would let her know she's in danger, like one of the monsters walking around nearby or her little brother's toy spaceship making noises behind her. Add into this that her mother Evelyn (Emily Blunt) is about to go into labor, and we have an incredibly tense dynamic that the movie milks for all it's worth. 

When asked what served as inspiration for this film, John Krasinski pointed to a surprising source that also makes total sense: the kitchen scene from "Jurassic Park."

The famous kitchen scene

In an interview with Empire, Krasinski stated: 

"I loved the idea of your second and third chance — meaning, if you did make a sound, you go into a whole other level of survival which is, 'Now that I've made a sound, if I run I'm dead, if I stay still I may be dead'. The idea of the Jurassic Park kitchen scene – if you make a sound, you have to stay still and hope that they don't get to you – that was always in my mind."

The famous scene from Steven Spielberg's dinosaur-themed adventure movie features the two Murphy kids, both around the same ages as Regan and Marcus in "A Quiet Place," having to hide from two velociraptors who've gotten into the kitchen. The situation is already bad to begin with, with no adults around to help and with Tim having an injured leg. It gets worse with the realization that these dinosaurs are smart enough to open doors. 

It's one of the tensest scenes in the whole film, but it's also one of the most satisfying, as we get to see the kids survive the situation not through brute strength or speed, but through clever problem-solving. Lex (Ariana Richards) tricks one of the raptors with her reflection and Tim manages to lure the other into a freezer and locks it inside. 

It makes sense that Krasinski was inspired by this scene throughout the production of "A Quiet Place," because the 2018 movie feels like the tension of the kitchen scene successfully stretched out to an unbearable 90 minutes. Beyond the suspense, there's something inherently cathartic about watching the characters successfully think their way through a seemingly impossible situation. Although you can nitpick the premise of the movie to death if you want to (and people certainly have), the solutions the Abbott family members come up with are genuinely impressive. One of the worst sins a horror movie can commit is having its characters die from stupid mistakes, and with "A Quiet Place" and its sequel, Krasinski and his collaborators have done an amazing job avoiding that trap.