“It Follows is a great idea in search of a better movie.”
Based on all the hype that accompanied It Follows theatrical release, you’d think that David Robert Mitchell was the heir apparent to John Carpenter.
And I’m here to tell you it’s just not the case because It Follows is an awesome idea surrounded by a decent movie. It’s not terrible by any stretch, though its not “One of the most striking American horror films in years” either.
Though that concept…Wow. The antagonist of the movie is essentially a curse, a sexually-transmitted demon. Once contracted, the only way to hold off death is to pass it on to someone else, who will have a limited amount of time to do the same.
If you fail to pass it on, it kills you, and works its way down the list of people who have slept with you.
I told you it’s an awesome concept. I also liked the idea that the movie wasn’t targeting anyone because of sexually promiscuity (in fact, it could be argued that the more people you sleep with, the better off you would be).
The movie takes place in the present day, though the effective soundtrack has a 70’s vibe to it that hightens suspense.
Though as I implied, the movie has problems, the biggest of which is that it too quickly abandons the mythology it’s built up whenever convenient (Quentin Tarantino was right).
For instance, the creature isn’t stupid, but it’s slow and has to walk to get around. This often serves to heighten suspense–like a zombie, there’s an inevitability to the creature that faster-moving terrors often lack–but there’s some oddness that accompanies the behavior that doesn’t serve the movie well.
For instance, the creature just appears in really odd places, and if it could just turn up anywhere it wanted to, it undermines the whole idea of it walking. For instance, there’s a moment when it turns up on the roof of a house. Did it climb the roof? And if so, why? And if it didn’t, that means it could pretty much appear wherever it wanted, which as I said, pretty much kills the suspense the movie spent valuable time building.