Directed by Fede Alvarez
“Don’t Breathe” shows the powerful directorial skills of Fede Alvarez, who co-wrote with Rodo Sayagues, and serves as a response to the mixed criticism he got with the remake of “Evil Dead”, his debut feature dated from three years ago.
The script here is modest and not totally given to perfection, however, it worked propitiously in order to attain the quality of the suspense Mr. Alvarez was looking for.
Three friends, Rocky (Jane Levy), Alex (Dylan Minnette), and Money (Daniel Zovatto), are young and healthy but prefer not to work hard to make a living. Instead, they've chosen to be thieves who are constantly looking the easiest ways to thrive.
The way they operate is pretty simple: they break into the houses secured by Alex’s father’s security company, in order to steal goods and sell them.
Their heists usually run seamlessly and with no big racket, and they’re already planning the next move, which is considered uncomplicated, taking into account that the owner of the house is a blind war vet (Stephen Lang) who lives in the company of a Rottweiler.
They break into his home at night, expecting to get 300 grand, but unexpectedly their lives are put in danger when they find a man, who besides possessing a brutal force and killer instinct, hides some horrible secrets in his den.
The music composed by Roque Baños creates half of the suspense while the darkness, the settings, and the blind man’s face compose the other half. There are silent and breathtaking situations that intend to magnify apprehension on the viewers, but also noisy fights and desperate getaways.
Actually, the story gains a few more thrills by the end, through the wild chases, but on the other hand, loses some credibility as it reveals its plot intricacies.
Despite all its flaws and one-dimensional characters, “Don’t Breathe” is a nerve-wracking experience. It’s immersed in a pitch-darkness countenance and is bluntly barbaric in its conclusions. I believe that true aficionados of the genre will find here a valuable object to collect.