What is Don’t Breathe?
Don’t Breathe is 2016 horror-thriller movie directed by Fede Álvarez and co-written by Álvarez and Rodo Sayagues. The movie showcases a group of petty thieves who steal electronics, jewellery, clothes, shoes and watches from people’s houses. Next, these thieves take up a more ambitious project which would help them escape their lives and give them an opportunity to start afresh. In this project they need to steal a hefty amount of money from a retired blind man’s house. That is an easy job, isn’t it? However, after they break into the old man’s house, things take a turn and literally this could be their last heist.
It has been less than five years this movie first released in the theatres and I have watched it four times already. This is the first movie that comes to my mind if someone asks me a recommendation for a thriller-horror movie. Moreover, its unexpected sequel ‘Don’t Breathe 2’ is coming to theatres in the latter half of 2021 which is another incentive to watch this exceptional thriller. Thus, I have made a list of 12 reasons why everyone should watch this movie and why this is one of the best thrillers out there.
Most part of this article is spoiler free. There are just two points in the end which include spoilers. So make sure if you haven’t watched the movie, don’t read the part under the ‘Spoilers Ahead’ heading.
If you want to watch the movie, it is available on Amazon Prime.
1) The Premise
Don’t Breathe is not a typical thriller-horror with some clichéd scenes. The story is fresh and unique. The basic premise is quite intriguing. What happens if the thieves get stuck in a house full of uncertainty?
2) The Locality
The old man’s house is situated in a ghost town which is devoid of human life. You can not call out for help. Which means you can vanish in thin air without anybody noticing it.
3) The House
The house isn’t jut a linear character. It has different layers. In the beginning the house looks just like any other house in your neighbourhood. But as you get closer to its premises, the house unfolds into hidden pathways, eerie corridors, dingy basement and locked doors.
4) The Old man
He is an army veteran. He is blind. He keeps a variety of pointed and dangerous tools. He keeps a gun under his bed. While these things may not arise any suspicion about this man living alone. He may need to defend himself, which could be the reason behind all these irregularities. But this is just half the story, you don’t know this cunning old man or his part of the story.
5) The Dog
Rottweiler has also got a significant part in the story. Its big teeth is to fear from. If you are scared from dogs or you have been ever chased by dogs, this movie will make the fear as real as it could be!
6) The Camerawork
It is the most expectational camerawork I haven’t seen in many movies. When the trio enters the house and they start exploring the house for money, the camera gives us thorough view of the house. It introduces us to the elements which we may see in the later half of the movie. Sometimes it shows us things twice so that the viewers are aware of it. The camerawork is also responsible for adding the suspense.
7) Rocky and Alex
Rocky played by Jane Levy is a confident girl, doesn’t take orders from other boys and is striving for a better life. On opposite side is Alex played by Dylan Minnette (13 Reason Why actor) doesn’t let the greed come in the way of his decisions and even thinks twice before saying ‘yes’. He is not the typical thief. Both of them are remarkable characters and exhibit great chemistry (In fact all the characters in the story feel authentic and demonstrate genuine emotions). Many thrillers have great screenplay but they are devoid of great characters and backstories. Don’t Breathe effortlessly connects us with these characters without slowing down the screenplay.
8) Frightening scenes
The movie constantly keeps its viewers on the edge of the seat. At one point after watching the trailer, I even felt it could have a supernatural element(though it doesn’t have one). Moreover, it is unpredictable and gives you enough jump scares along with the horror and thrilling sequences. It’s a perfect blend.
9) The Horror
The movie has ample of blood and gore that will make you feel nauseous. But there more to it. In the middle there is a shocking reveal which turns the horror to the next level.
10) What you expect is not what you get
In every sequence you find some elements which you would have not expected. Moreover, these elements doesn’t look over the top and just included for the twists and turns. It feels genuine. There are many instances where you feel the movie has ended and characters have escaped. But just in that instant the movie takes a turn for the worse.
11) The Blackout scene
Like there are many scenes in Don’t Breathe which are my favourite. But this particular scene is just exceptional. When Rocky and Alex are escaping from the basement, the clever old man switches off the lights. This makes him as well as the two intruders blind. Its an advantage for the old man but disadvantage for Rocky and Alex. We get to see these types of sequences very rarely in cinema where characters use their flaws to their advantage.
12) The End
The end of the movie is equally responsible for sending you back with the right emotions. Some movies end is shocking but it can be confusing sometimes. Don’t Breath’s story ends on a satisfactory note where Rocky escapes. The old man even doesn’t accuses her of stealing his money. Thus, Rocky in the end shifts to California with Diddy. We sigh a relief.
If you still haven’t decided, if this is your type of movie. For a vibe check here is the trailer:
An Indian reviewer who writes about horror and thriller movies/series. If not movies, he likes to pick up a mystery book to read. Some of his favourite movies/series include Stranger Things, Elite (S1-3), Train to Busan, Andhadhun, Strangers: Prey at Night.