This is a precarious article to write. If I disavow “Speak No Evil,” I’ll be lying. It’s one of the best movies I’ve seen this year.
But if I recommend it, nobody will ever talk to me again.
“Speak No Evil” is a movie about a Danish family who meet a Dutch family on vacation in Italy, and are then invited to visit them at home for a long weekend. Though always charming and affable, the Dutch family gradually picks more and more intensely at the Danish family’s boundaries. And the Danish family lets them.
“Speak No Evil” is the scariest horror movie I’ve ever seen. Its plot and its pacing will have you panicked. Its twist is advertised as great, and it delivers. Watching this movie only for the twist is almost worth never sleeping again.
It’s also a great way to run up your (or the University’s) electric bill. You won’t be turning off the lights again for a long while.
It’s not just the horror of the events themselves; it’s the horror of witnessing every single moment the Danish family could have escaped their gruesome fates, and didn’t. Watching “Speak No Evil” is like going on a rollercoaster where the first three quarters is an ambling car ride through the Dutch countryside, and then the last part is getting fucking stabbed.
If you think me bringing up stabbing is a cute little reference to the film’s content, you are wrong! It’s so much worse!
“Speak No Evil” is a fantastic movie. And I’m never, ever watching it again.
I shouldn’t have watched it in the first place. Nobody should, and everybody should. At least so I have someone to talk to.
Here’s my real, 100% serious list of people who should watch this movie.
- Good faith movie reviewers (none of that CinemaSins shit).
- Serious horror buffs. Maybe.
- Ari Aster (I wanna get his thoughts).
If you’re not any of those people, stay a safe distance away.
I should disclose that this review is somewhat biased by the fact that I was so freaked out, I sped up the movie during parts of the climax. Apparently that affected my movie-watching experience a great deal, considering the most horrifying part of “Speak No Evil” (which I cannot describe in this paper for both spoilery and moral reasons) happens on screen. If you’re wondering whether I’m going to rewatch that scene specifically so I can write a better review and retain my journalistic integrity, the answer is no. Enjoy this C- review that was written by someone with boundaries!
If you’re one of the above-mentioned groups or you don’t care for my advice, you can find “Speak No Evil” on Shudder, AMC, or DirectTV. Or, for the low low price of free, you can stare directly in the mirror for 10 to 15 minutes until you begin to experience terrifying hallucinations. The choice is yours!