It Follows premiered at the Cannes Film Festival last year and ushers in a new type of horror, filled with suspense and detailing. Director David Robert Mitchell has delivered a masterpiece in horror, leaving the audience to comprehend the story and its characters. The locales, the not so teenage horror classic scenes and the background score are what makes this film a stand-out.
Jay (Maika Monroe), a teenage girl has a sexual encounter with Hugh (Jake Weary), which ends up in Jay being bound half-naked. He confesses to her that a phantom like figure has been following him, after a previous sexual encounter, and he has now passed it on to her. The phantom feeds on the victim’s fears and can take any form, such as a stranger walking on the street or a family member.
Here’s what makes this film different: this does not go the grotesque way of the Saw series, nor the slow killings of the whole group in the Final Destination series. There is an uneasy feeling about this film, often making you wonder about all the silence at home when you’re alone. The tension is spread over the film, assisted by the able camerawork. Jay and her friends go up to a friend’s cabin, only to be confronted by a phantom again. A particular scene of mention is when the phantom enters the house.
The first half is gripping, guessing as to what are the origins of this supernatural or phantom-like figure. The second half is where it misses out. Mitchell, also the writer of the film, forgets about the plot. It seems abrupt, with no explanation as to what is happening on screen, especially in the second half. Character profiles are noteworthy, especially Paul (Keir Gilchrist), for whom his inhibitions and lust are the same. Maika Monroe as Jay, puts in a commendable performance as the tormented protagonist in the movie. Her friends Kelly and Yara have distinct personalities on screen, often keeping the suspense going instead of the protagonist. With the hint of a sequel doing the rounds, It Follows surely has begun a new trend in the horror genre.
Why Should You Watch it
It Follows will slip under the radar, but catch it for the intense background music and an eerie presence, which follows you home.
By Shlomoh Samuel