Saturday, June 20, 2015

It Follows (2015)

It Follows is a horror film that tells the story of a girl who is followed by an unknown supernatural force after a sexual encounter. Jay (Maika Monroe) finds herself plagued by strange visions and the inescapable sense that someone, something, is following her.

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Like most good horror films, It Follows works well as a social commentary. It's a rare horror film that has  intriguing ideas to match its thrills. The entity, an obvious metaphor for an STD, haunts you until you pass it along to another person. Though, that's just a temporary fix because if the entity kills its the next victim, it eventually makes it way back down the line to previous victims. So there is a constant sense of dread that this one mistake will follow continue to follow you.

 photo it_follows_zpsrrtu0bn9.jpgThis entity doesn't have a defined appearance. It can look like anybody at anytime and its invisible to everyone else but the current victim. It's fitting that nobody else can see this entity, just as nobody else can relate to Jay's current trauma. It's personal to her.

She's haunted by this entity, not just because it keeps following her, but also because of moral struggle it creates. Should she pass it on and let somebody else worry about it? Should someone else have suffer because of her mistake?

 photo It-Follows-1-620x400_zpsrplhvdlq.pngThis dilema forces Jay into a deeper despair as she struggles to come up with a solution.
It plays on similar fears teens face when growing up... dealing with an increased sense of responsibility and a certain loss of innocence (along with the obvious sexual fears).

Decisions made today, can impact the rest of your life. That, in and of itself, is a terrifying thought. With almost no adult characters in sight, these teens are forced to make all their decisions on their own and see how they play out (even if they don't always make the right decisions).

It Follows relies more on its eerie, creepy, suspenseful atmosphere than it does on typical horror tricks. While there are some genuine scares, there may not be enough to satisfy most horror fans today- and the film might be better for it. Modern horror films rely on too many cheap tricks and easy jump scares. Director David Robert Mitchell seems more concerned with creating a constant sense of tension and doom as the danger is always approaching. That horrifying atmosphere is much more difficult to create and feels more like a throwback to the horror films of the 1980s. Because of that, It Follows stands out among the horror films of today.

It Follows is a fascinating horror film with a lot on its mind. With enough thrills to satisfy, and a killer score to frighten, It Follows will stay with you long after you watch.

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