<script async src="//pagead2.googlesyndication.com/pagead/js/adsbygoogle.js"></script> <!-- Showbiz Portal Bottom 1 300x250, created 10/15/10 --> <ins class="adsbygoogle" style="display:inline-block;width:300px;height:250px" data-ad-client="ca-pub-1272644781333770" data-ad-slot="2530175011"></ins> <script> (adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({}); </script>
Mario Bautista, has been with the entertainment industry for more than 4 decades. He writes regular columns for People's Journal and Malaya.

Jul 31, 2023



‘SOFT & QUIET’ is a thriller that is so totally different from what its title implies.

It starts quite innocently with a kindergarten teacher, Emily (Stefanie Estes), organizing a meeting for other women, including Leslie (Olivia Lucardi), Kim (Dana Millican), and Marjorie (Eleanor Plenta). 

Their meeting is being held in a small town church. 

As the movie unfolds, the women, all Caucasians, start with cheerful introductions. Then it turns out they are white supremacist members of what they call Daughters for Aryan Unity. 

They are all neo-Nazis who have serious complaints against people of other races who they consider inferior, specially immigrants, Jews, other ethnic groups, even feminists and organizations like Black Lives Matter. 

The pastor of the church doesn’t favor their views and tells them to leave.

Emily volunteers to continue their meeting in her own home. First, they go to the grocery store owned by Kim to get some provisions for their meeting.

While they are inside the store, two Asian women come in, Anne (Melissa Paolo) and Lily (Cissy Li), and the women find an outlet for their racial hatred.

They start bickering with the Asian siblings. 

The verbal confrontation eventually leads to physical altercation. 

This volatile incident will further escalate into full scale violence when the sisters go home and Emily and her group decide to follow them to vandalize their place. 

The movie is quite timely considering the high incidence of Asian Hate crimes in the USA today, happening in so many American cities. 

 If you're an Asian, no doubt you will be so affected, get angry, get mad at what the bigoted women do to their Asian victims.

The directorial debut of writer-director Beth de Araujo, the movie unfolds in real time and runs for a compact one hour and a half with the hand held camera just following the characters around. 

It happens in the course of just one night and looks like it’s shot on a single take or tuhog, to make what you see on screen deliberately intense storytelling and a very disturbing experience. 

It’s a very brave movie as we’re sure real Aryan supremacists, who are consumed by feelings of superiority and hatred against cultural minorities, will certainly not like the way they are portrayed as barbarians in the film. 

It will really shock you with its horrifying hate speeches that can easily poison young minds, with it peddling discriminatory ideologies on the dangers of multi-culturalism. 

The premise of the movie can really be frightening as these racist women do not really look like warped caricatures of evil but something more scary: ordinary persons with harmless looks but with toxic beliefs. 

The characters look like they are regular women who are looking for a sense of belonging. 

Marjorie feels so dissatisfied with her life and she blames it all on people who look different than her, so the other girls even offer to help her hook up with a boyfriend. 

The movie shows that not all evil doers hide behind masks or in the darkness, they walk among us looking like ordinary people but festering inside with their unjustified hate for others.

Stephanie Estes is very effective as the self appointed leader of the group.

With her self righteous notion of being entitled and superior to others, she wants to be always in control and looks like she’s always about to explode with vitriolic rage. 

It’s obvious that her incendiary rhetorics can be dangerous and may result in bloodshed.

Even her husband, Craig (Jon Beavers), gives up as the voice of reason, as he can no longer restrain her and her friends from doing their deranged actions. 

But the power dynamic in their group changes as events turn more tragicaly insane, with Leslie emerging as the executioner of their diabolical mission’s final consequences, even violating the sex organ of a victim with a carrot.

All in all, this is compelling filmmaking that asks difficult questions about what racial hatred hath wrought. 

And the people who propagate such chilling hate do it softly and quietly to recruit more believers into their side. Don't miss it. Now showing in theaters.