It Follows - A Creepy, Slow-Burn of a Horror Movie

Matthew Parkinson | 4 Apr 2015 12:00
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Directed and written by David Robert Mitchell. Produced by Rebecca Green, Laura D. Smith, David Robert Mitchell, David Kaplan, and Erik Rommesmo. Release date: March 13, 2015 (March 27, 2015 expansion).

When a good horror movie - and make no mistake, It Follows is a good horror movie - shows up, it is something to celebrate. The genre is often so bad, particularly when it comes to wide theatrical releases, that people are under the impression that there are no good horror movies anymore. That's inaccurate, but it's understandable why people believe it to be so. Look no further than 2015's earlier wide-release horror movies: The Woman in Black 2, The Lazarus Effect - and The Boy Next Door if you want to stretch your definition of "horror movie." None of these were any good. But, with It Follows, we finally have a good one.

It's impressive what one can do with so little. It Follows has such a simple premise and monster that it almost sounds comical. There is a thing, and it follows you. It walks slowly toward you wherever you are, never stopping until it reaches you, at which point you get ripped apart. It can take the form of anybody. Sometimes you may know the form it takes, while other times it will take the form of a complete stranger. Nobody knows why it is, what it really is, or why it does what it does. It never moves faster than a slow walk. The only people who can see it are those who have been its target. And yet, in spite of all this - or perhaps because of it - the creature in It Follows is genuinely frightening. Ambiguity is beneficial to the monsters in horror movies; things becomes less scary the more you see and the more you know of them.

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The only way to pass on the creature's target is to have sex with someone, something Jay (Maika Monroe) finds out after her boyfriend has sex with her only to find out he was just doing so in order to pass on the "curse." So, yes, what we're dealing with here is essentially an STD, except you can become exempt from its effects if you pass it along to someone else. However, if the person to whom you passed it is killed, it will come back to you. How creepy is that? Very creepy, if you ask me. The nameless creature ("It"?) in It Follows makes for a great villain.

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