‘It Follows’ takes a leaf from several classic horror movies. Capturing the feel of a 1970’s/80’s film, the cheap budget doesn’t equate to cheap thrills. Crafted with ghoulish care, ‘It Follows’ discards the easy CGI option by aiming for unsettling scares. It is a testament that the spooky quality for which it strives is done so well. The genre has its detractors but kudos has to be given to films that mostly get it right. ‘It Follows’ more than fits the bill for chillingly good viewing.
Teenager Jay (Maika Monroe) enjoys life and a relationship with her boyfriend. After having sex, he reveals a dark secret. Shocked by his revelation, Jay is soon plagued by strange visions and a feeling someone is following her. Helped by her friends, she determines to uncover the mystery. Her world descends into a horrific spiral with death’s door looming large on her horizon.
Free of endless blood and gore, ‘It Follows’ relies on authentic eeriness. Although not consistently scary, it has an undercurrent of true tension refusing to subside. Exploiting the ‘have sex and die’ motif from many horror movies, the script cleverly uses the teenager’s sexual natures against them. The stalking menace they face serves as a warning of impending doom. Much can be read into what the screenplay is saying, making the viewer think as well as being on the edge of their seat.
David Robert Mitchell directs with confident assurance, milking much from the somewhat thin premise. Whilst enjoyably creepy, ‘It Follows’ could have used more exposition. Some moments don’t quite fit into the narrative which could have helped in making ‘It Follows’ a more rounded experience. Coupled with generally excellent performances, the cinematography and thumping synth-based score aid immeasurably to the atmosphere of pure dread.
‘It Follows’ is a satisfying spooky movie mostly delivering on its promise. Almost like a breath of fresh air after the glut of excessive techno-infused scary flicks, the low-tech feel it embraces gives hope more will follow its foreboding lead.
Movie Review Rating out of 10: 7
Movie Review by Patrick Moore
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Patrick Moore's Movie Review is an alternative look at movie releases in Australia.