For most part of its 88-minute running time, the terrific (and terrifying) home-invasion thriller Don’t Breathe grabs your attention and refuses to let go. I can’t remember the last time I got through an entire film without once looking at my phone.
The movie follows a trio of teenage burglars – Rocky (Jane Levy), Money (Daniel Zovatto), and Alex (Dylan Minnette) – who break into the home of a blind war veteran, believed to be sitting on the pile of cash he received as a settlement over the death of his daughter in an accident. As it turns out, the man (Stephen Lang) isn’t as helpless as the invaders had imagined. Having served in Iraq in his glory days, he knows his way around a gun and puts up quite the fight.
The cat and mouse chase that follows, largely within the confines of this house, is ripe with tension and relies in equal part on jump scares that you can see coming, and many moments of unexpected shock. Just when you think you know where things are headed, co-writer/director Fede Alvarez throws a creepy twist your way…and then another, until you’re sucked right back into the suspenseful plot.
That’s about all you need to know about the film going in, besides the fact that the script expertly flips your initial feelings about both the young criminals and the blind guy they set out to rob. It all unfolds briskly, unfortunately at the cost of character depth. But that’s a small price to pay for a relentlessly thrilling film that seldom lets up.
I’m going with three-and-a-half out of five for Don’t Breathe. Make sure you empty your bladder before the lights go down.

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