Sunday, November 1, 2015

Sixth Annual FMS Scarelicious October Movie Series #8: It Follows

Implacable sexually-transmitted murder ghouls.

If that phrase isn't enough to make you want to watch It Follows, then I don't know what will.  Arguably one of the best horror films in recent memory, It Follows follows Jay, a pretty teenage girl living in an out-of-time Detroit suburb who, like many horror film denizens before her, makes the wrong choice about whom she sleeps with.  When she does, the guy tells her that he has passed It on to her and she'd be wise to sleep with someone else - anyone else - as soon as possible to get rid of It.  He tells her what It is, to the best he can: It, taking the form of strangers or someone she knows, will stalk Jay, walking straight for her, wherever she is, and never stopping.  If It catches her, It will kill her.  If It kills her, It will come for him.  Jay doesn't know if she can transmit It to someone else in good conscience but she has to do something.

It Follows is a great and extremely creepy movie.  The cast (all teenagers as adults are rarely onscreen, even in the background) is terrific, understated and sounding like actual teenagers.  The Detroit setting is bland, until the kids venture into the gray blight of the city.  The score is fantastic, a synth throwback that ramps up the tension.  The menace of It is, in part, that It could be anyone, at any time - any time someone walks onscreen, there's a possibility that they are It.  It isn't a ghost but It is unstoppable and the fact that Jay is being stalked all the time is very unnerving.

It Follows has a couple of grisly scenes but is not at all a gorefest, its scares instead suspensefully ratcheting up through clever direction and music cues.  This is a smart, well-crafted horror film, definitely recommended and a strong finish to this year's Scarelicious October Movie Series.

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