It Follows Pulls the Viewer to the Verge of Paranoia
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Imagine a one-night stand and after that an extraterrestrial beast will follow you to the end of your life. That is, unless you have sex with someone else, which will “attach” the predator to the next victim.
The script of It Follows (2014), and independent film written and directed by the American David Robert Mitchell, must have been scripted under strong substances of some kind, perhaps illegal. But Mitchell’s first attempt at horror works.
Mitchell is known about his previous work as a writer and director of The Myth of the American Sleepover (2010), a comedy-drama, where a group of teenagers take first steps in the jungle of love in a suburban setting. In It Follows, Mitchell turns the similar suburban setting with the detached houses, beaches and swimming pools to scenes of horror.
It Follows brings a nice twist to the classic slasher subgenre – originating from The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (1974) to Halloween (1978) and to Friday the 13th (1980) – where the concept involves a violent psychopath hunting and slaughtering young, good-looking women and everybody else who steps into the way.
It Follows follows the tradition. The victim here is Jay Height (Maika Monroe) but counts on suspense more than the actual slashing. There’s a bunch of teens in their 19’s involved in the core of the story, and the constant tension playing around the idea of “Who’s going to have sex with Jay?” drives the viewer to the verge of madness – which good horror films should do, anyway.
The creepy soundtrack, the blueish saturation, shaky camera and beautiful scenes and angles – which made Mitchell’s previous work warm and cozy – succeeds in turning the mood into total horror, thus reminds me of the saying, “There’s a thin line between love and hate.”
It Follows is not a feel-good movie, and there is a strong sense of desperation felt on the shoulders of the viewer, which some might find overwhelming. There’s also a vast amount of sudden surprises, so it’s advisable to keep a watchful eye over when one throws a chunk of popcorn down the throat. Don’t be surprised if you are looking over your shoulder after leaving the cinema.
It Follows premieres in cinemas across the country on June 26.