It Follows (2015)

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It-FollowsDave’s 3-Word Review:
Paranormally Transmitted Diseases.

If horror is normally one thing, it would be predictable…and hardly ever scary. The horror genre has been striving to do something different, but they always end up in the same, safe spot. Unfortunately the number of truly creepy and/or scary films out there is slim to none in my opinion, and I can count them all one one hand…but I think I’ll have to start adding on another hand when it comes to It Follows, which heavily deserves to be known in this genre. I’ve been waiting for a while to see this one…and now that I’ve seen it – I’m pushing it onto you to watch it as well.

It Follows follows around a young girl, who after a sexual encounter, begins seeing…things. We’re talking about really creepy people who no one else sees that slowly make their way towards her – presumably to kill her. However, they are slow and there can only be one of them, but if you get locked in a room with only one exit…you might be in a tight bind. Anyways, the only way to get rid of it is to “pass it on” to someone else through sex – but if these things find them and kill them, they make their way back to the original host.

This movie is about STDs. It doesn’t exactly try to hide the fact, but this is a completely metaphoric and obvious nod to the dangers of sexually transmitted diseases. You can’t escape it or ignore it, and even after passing it on…you’re not free, you’re never free. I love the entire inside joke as far as how the movie operates, but even as a horror film in general, this movie is off the chain. I don’t think I was genuinely ever really scared of anything happening, but some of the scenes throughout the movie were definitely creepy and have you physically telling the characters not to do this or that before they go and do it. If you ask me, that’s a classic feel that horror films are supposed to give you, and It Follows delivered furiously.

Part of why some of these scenes are creepy is how they were shot and edited. You’d be surprised at how important some sound editing and photography direction is to the horror genre. To give you an idea of how it affected me, some of the scariest scenes in this film were accompanied by what sounded to me, like natural house-settling noises, but not in a house-settling setting. I’m talking about the air conditioner, or the slight buzz of the fridge, or light noise that comes out of electronics – like computers. Stuff you don’t pick up on until you start to go to sleep, and because the movie did such a good job with sound editing, it brings you right back to the moments in the film…and guess what…you can’t help but think what if someone slowly walks into this room to kill me.

Yes yes yes, this movie was a slow and furious scare ride. It gives you an interesting after shock that leaves you contemplating on whether you should shut the bedroom door at night…and whether you should ever have sex. Seriously, this movie was smart as both a horror film and as a public service announcement. I haven’t ever seen a movie quite like this, and I doubt I ever will again – but if you can help it, I definitely recommend watching it – even if only once.

The Good:

This movie was smart, very smart in regards to both the horror genre (which is hard to do in and of itself), as well as a metaphorical PSA about STD’s. I can see this scaring the crap out of a lot of people for a lot of reasons, so my props to the people behind the movie for making something truly distrubing.

The Bad:

I can easily still say it didn’t scare me, at least not during the movie itself. I thought it was very interesting, smart, and even creepy, but I wasn’t looking away or holding my breath at any point. If I could rate it on how it made me feel at night when I was getting ready for bed, that’s another story. Then again, I did sleep through the night. I’ve watched horror films in the past where I just couldn’t sleep. Correction: I’ve seen one movie that had that effect – this wasn’t that.

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3 thoughts on “It Follows (2015)

  1. Great review. I agree, the one thing keeping me from totally going bonkers about it was its lack of true horror. Still, smart and creepy and entertaining as hell.

  2. This film featured as part of Odeon’s Screen Unseen preview programme and if the responses on Facebook were accurate it split the audiences that saw it. I appreciated the fact that it didn’t attempt to reply on jump scares and remember enjoying the scene in the swimming pool. I think the premise was good with the relentless, ever changing form of the ‘entity’ but there was a little too much staring at blades of grass and sitting around in bedrooms waiting for things to happen.

    • Staring at blades of grass – I know what you’re talking about, but I remember specifically thinking while watching it – that I liked those shots. It made it unique and centered on the character and how she was feeling in that second. So yeah – I liked those shots

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