Monday, 9 March 2015

Week 10: It Follows

Writer/Director: David Robert Mitchell
Seen: Friday 6th March 2015
Venue: Eye Cinema Galway
Snacks: NOTHING???!!!
Mood: ‘Who is that behind you’
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Being a fan of the horror genre I have long searched for genuinely eerie films that play with the  mind and freak you out a little. I’ll be honest and say I haven’t found many but to name a few like Kubrick’s ‘The Shining’ (1980), the recent gloomy Babadook (2014) and Stephen Kings ‘IT’’ (1990) managed to have me checking under the bed (IT mainly because I watched it when I was 12 and I have a fear of clowns- standard!) I went then to see ‘It Follows’ with high hopes, having read a little about the premise and already liking the ambiguity of the title,what is IT? and what’s IT going to do?
I can say I wasn’t at all disappointed but more of that later.

The film focus’s on 19 year old Jay (Maika Monroe) who is much like any american teen who goes to school and dates etc. She meets Hugh (Jake Weary) and after a seemingly innocent sexual encounter wakes up to be told by Hugh that he has passed on ‘it’. It can look like anything or anyone, even someone you love but wherever you go and whatever you do it is always walking directly towards you and it will continue to do so until it kills you or until you have sex with someone else. It doesn’t end there though the person you have sex with will then be the target and if they get killed it falls back to you.
The premise of this film is what makes it so strong. I have not seen anything like it before and the word unique does spring to mind. It’s such a simple and age old concept ‘something bad is coming and it’s going to get you no matter what you do’ ‘It Follows’ is genuinely disturbing , ‘it’ never runs or drives it just walks slowly towards you, a lurking shadow of inevitability.  Unlike most films in this genre which are blood and gore filled over the top nonsense everything here is understated.

The score  by ‘disasterpiece’ can only be described as genius, it builds tension throughout and combined with the dizzying cinematography  which spins and weaves so the audience feels constantly on the edge of their seats, feverishly wondering when ‘It’ will appear in the distance.
There are definite nods to early 70’s and 80’s horror films, John Lee Carpenters ‘Halloween’ (1978) springs to mind with Monroe’s performance emanating snatches of Jamie Lee Curtis.
The acting is superb, never overplayed and it’s this simplicity, the lack of bodies and gore that makes the fear so tangible.

Director David Robert Mitchell has really created something that is engrossing and unique and I will look forward to what he does next… the meantime who is that walking behind you?.....

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