Horror is a genre often plagued with tired story lines, repetitive themes and predictable conclusions that leave nothing to the imagination. The somewhat ironically titled It Follows actual lays out a new path and finds itself on the corner of well-executed and original.
Set in a world, seemingly unstuck in time, where teens armed with eReaders disguised as compacts lounge on velvet couches watching drive-in monster movies on black & white transistor TVs, It Follows exists in its own parentless dystopia.
After a night of back-seat sex and chloroform, Jay (Maika Monroe) wakes up tied to a wheelchair. Her new boyfriend, Hugh, reveals that through intercourse he has passed along a menace that will stalk her until it either kills her or she passes it along. Jay and a post-modern Scooby gang, made up of her sister and two friends, find themselves in a race to find a way to defeat the monster or transfer it to someone else.
Writer/Director David Robert Mitchell takes his cues from John Carpenter, specifically Halloween and The Thing. With very few special effects, he uses claustrophobic camera work with changing points of view and an abrupt, simplistic keyboard score to drive the tension. At one point, the gang journeys closer to the depressed and abandoned outskirts of Detroit in search of Hugh. Not only do the rundown homes and abandoned buildings create an atmosphere of despair, but they also convey an overall pessimism that bad things are close to their suburban front doors.
In the end, It Follows proves that the right combination of story and back-to-basics filmmaking can produce a gem of a thriller.
It Follows – Trailer