Obviously this fear about our future lands very personal to many people, not just Americans. Thus, I’d like to discuss this big hit from a Christian perspective, in how it depicts a family’s fear of the end times, which includes God’s judgment that scares us into silence.
Warning: Spoilers ahead!
Ultimately, the family must sacrifice the silence of themselves, rather than the silence of the lambs the Israelites had to make in their first Passover feast.
Now about these Death Angels. Their behavior almost mimics the apocalyptic locusts described in Joel 2 and Revelation 9, the latter of which describes its locusts as looking like horses ready for battle (the Death Angels walk on all fours), wearing what looks like gold crowns (their teeth can look like this when morphed into the proper shape), with faces like a human (when in normal mode, the Death Angels’ heads are shaped like a human), hair like a woman (not present), and teeth like lion’s teeth (self-explanatory). These locusts are also described as having iron breastplates (like the Death Angels’ sturdy indestructible skin) and wings that sounded like chariots (these Death Angels may have had wings when they first arrived before the air force shot them off). The locusts also are described as having tails like scorpions, which the Death Angels do not have. So, many, many similarities are shared.
But how does that theme present itself in this film though? Simple: it says you should praise God or be silenced, for He will not hesitate to scare you into silence. (Ephesians 6:12) But why would a loving God bring such pestilence to his own people? Because he wants to show us how vulnerable we are. (Proverbs 3:33, Isaiah 32:18, Matthew 6:28-34) Also, the Bible overarches the theme of how death allows purification. (Zechariah 13:7-9, Hebrews 9:16-22)
From what we see of this family, that judgment seems to work in helping them sustain their home, as we see them go through many conflicts between one another, particularly between the father and daughter in terms of her cochlear implant. But when they are faced in a life/death situation together, it forces them to work as a single unit, like a family should. After all, if we can sustain our house here on Earth, think how much more worth we could be in God’s kingdom! (Proverbs 24:3, 1 Timothy 5:8)
I heard many people point out a plot hole about why they didn’t just live by the waterfall since they can safely make noise there. But honestly, concerning the amount of food available that ensures they live as normal a life as they can, the barn makes more sense. Plus, them fleeing to a farm in the forest resembles Israel fleeing for the mountains during the time of judgment. In Revelation 12, it has been speculated that the woman giving birth represents Israel, while the great dragon represents Satan, who was “hurled to the earth, and his angels with him.” (verse 9) This imagery appears when the mother gives birth while one Death Angel has made its way into the basement, potentially to devour the child. Then in verse 14, it says how “The woman was given the two wings of a great eagle, so that she might fly to the place prepared for her in the wilderness, where she would be taken care of for a time, times and half a time, out of the serpent’s reach.” Bible scholars have interpreted this as a parallel of Israel fleeing into the wilderness so that they may be protected by the Lord during his final test. (Matthew 24, Luke 21:34-36, 1 Corinthians 10:9-11)
I personally find it most impactful how the sound in this film reminds you of its power: when done by inanimate objects, it’s nature running its course, but when it comes from your own mouth, it’s the public outcry of your spiritual condition. We people don’t notice it so much because making noise, especially with our own lips, comes across naturally to us. Likewise, nothing demands your attention like not being allowed to make noise! Unlike what the First Amendment tells us, the Bible tells us that anything we speak must be for God’s glory.
Then again, this portrayal of God’s final judgment on His people does not align entirely true to the reality. Again, the family did not seem particularly religious, and I believe the same can be said about John Krasinski. There are some people who do the Christian things: pray, go to church, read their bible, but don’t really make it central to their lives. But from what I saw in the movie, the life/death predicament they were living in must’ve really made them all question their faith, although this really was a missed opportunity from a storytelling perspective. Their idolatry has been vanquished, but they only earn it back by their own means.
Then the ending indicates that people can achieve triumph over judgment by their own means, not by reliance on their creator. It suggests that while humanity has close calls with being wiped out, we ultimately will triumph under a new family structure take up the new societal direction. That’s symbolized by the father doing something completely unlike what society says an American dad should do: give up his life to save his children, the greatest sign of love he could have possibly given them. Likewise, the mother shows little fear of these outer forces against the noisy birth pains, she inspires us toward a brighter future as she takes up a rifle after her daughter’s supposed weakness (the cochlear implant) reveals the Death Angels’ one weakness, allowing their feminization to save the noisy world.
Yes, it encourages worldly progression toward societal American values, but from a Biblical perspective, something valuable can be taken away: We will never know when the day of the Lord’s judgment will happen, so we must watch our tongues before His curse comes upon the sinful soil. The men must give themselves for the new generation, the women must give themselves for the new generation, the kids must do all they can to support one another, while doing everything out of love, (1 Corinthians 16:14) then we don’t have to live in this ugly world any longer.
Jesus only used his words to lift others, as prayers towards his Father. As he died on the cross to give his life as a ransom for many, his final dying words were, “Tetelestai!” or, “It is finished!” That means his entire life was about the greater cause of fulfilling the covenant between God and His people, so that we may live with Him freely in God’s eternal Kingdom, where “There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” (Revelation 21:4)
You do not have to live in feared silence, for with all you speak, speak with love, then the future you inherit will be far more beneficial than a protective gun-wielding mom, it will fill you with so much joy you can do nothing besides sing.
Thank you so much for your time in reading! Please feel free to e-mail me at Trevor@TrevorsViewOnHollywood.com or message me through social media if you have any further questions. I’m also doing these types of posts monthly, so if there’s another movie you want me to talk in-depth about from a Christian perspective, please let me know!
Have a great week, and happy watching, God bless!