In a deep, dark bunker, a young family have been surviving for over 300 days with limited light and even more limited food. Outside and above the bunker lurk “The Breathers.” With glowing eyes and Darth Vader’s respiratory problems, they stalk the night on the lookout for the family.
Hidden is a chamber piece spiked with apocalyptic sensibilities. At least to begin with anyway. Directors, The Duffer Brothers, set up a grim, bleak world which we view through the eyes of daughter, Zoe (Emily Alyn Lind), who has spent nearly a year living in fear of the mysterious Breathers, and stuck in the middle of her loving, well-intentioned parents.
Like any true parental team, mother and father want the best for their children, but choose different routes to get there. Mother, Claire (Andrea Riseborough), tries to maintain order with a series of rules intended to keep Zoe safe, but ultimately to help herself cope with their desperate situation. Meanwhile father, Ray (Alexander Skarsgard), agrees with the rules set in place, but his more relaxed, cavalier attitude causes tension. With everything going on, there’s a lot here for a child to emotionally unpack, and young star, Emily Alyn Lind, gives a strong, emotional, and heart wrenching performance.
As deliberately paced as the film is, Hidden picks up speed when an attempt to destroy a rat in their makeshift kitchen leads the family to exposing their hiding spot to the things upstairs. From this point on, Hidden takes a sharp turn from thriller to something altogether different. It’s a gut-punch of an ending, and it’s a testament to the cast that things stay as grounded as they do.