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It Follows: a Review

I heard great things about the horror movie IT FOLLOWS. I'm not a horror fan, but Darwin loves the genre.  I make him sit through super-hero movies, so in the spirit of being even, I sigh and attend the occasional horror movie with him.  When I saw the rave reviews about IT FOLLOWS, I thought, "Well! Here's a horror movie I might enjoy and it'll be a nice surprise for Darwin--a horror movie I'm not complaining about!"

I got the DVD.  Darwin was pleased with the idea, and we settled onto the couch to watch.

It was awful.

Plot synopsis: a girl has sex with her slightly older boyfriend and discovers that he has, as a result, passed a strange being on to her.  The being can change shape and will slowly, inevitably lurch toward her until it catches up with her.  When it does, it will kill her.  There's no way to stop it.  You can only outrun it.  And no one but you can see it.  The only way to get rid of it is to have sex with someone else and make it focus on them, turning you into a world-class asshole.

It's a great set-up, but the execution was awful.  The pacing was slooooooowwwwww.  And not suspensfully slow.  Boring and slooooowww.  Everyone sits around doing relentlessly ordinary things--brushing their hair, watching old TV shows, having ordinary teenage-type conversations.  (The girl's parents inexplicably vanish about fifteen minutes into the movie, and their absence is never explained.)  And NOTHING HAPPENS.  Finally the being lurches into view and there's a frantic few moments of rushing about to put some distance between the girl and it, but then everyone just sits around talking again.  You can easily take a bathroom break and pop some corn without pausing, and you'll miss nothing.

You also start to realize that the idea of the being is pretty stupid.  It walks.  Slowly.  So you only need to drive to Point A, wait 13 hours, and drive back home.  The being will have to turn around and lurch back toward you, at which point you just drive away again.  It's annoying, but not impossible to deal with.

The whole thing comes across as a metaphor in search of a plot.  The being is a stand-in for the consequences of sexual activity, apparently.  Trouble is, the metaphor doesn't SAY anything.  And the story is so thin, we don't care.  The characters, like the setting, are relentlessly ordinary, which means there's nothing remotely interesting about any of them, so we don't care what happens.  Die or not, so what?  They're flat and dull as a Detroit sidewalk anyway, so when someone dies, it's a bit of a relief.

I truly don't understand the rave reviews the movie earned.  Perhaps movie reviewers sit through so many movies, the films all seem the same after a while, and anything vaguely different comes across as brilliant by contrast.  I don't know.  I do know that there was no real story, no real suspense, bad pacing, poor cinetography, stilted acting, embarrassingly-bad dialogue, and plot holes you could lost a tank in.

Skip it, folks. Really.



( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
Sep. 4th, 2015 02:09 pm (UTC)
I don't watch horror movies. I saw one of the Nightmare on Elm Street movies in high school, and a scene were Freddy pulled this kid down into the kid's own mattress, headphones and stereo and all, did me in for horror movies (and listening to music in bed). I'll watch the occasional Stephen King movie, but since I've read the books, there's little I'm not prepared for in those.

But, I am wondering about It Follows. You say that the "infected" person has sex with someone, passes along the ghoulie, and goes their merry way. The newly infected person has to do the same, ad infinitum. So, what happens if the ghoulie catches up to the latest infected person and kills them? Is it freed of its need to chase and kill sexually active people? Does it get a reward? Does it move on to the afterlife? Does it vanish in a poof of smoke?

I don't understand what's in it for the ghoulie to actually succeed. Which may just be more of a plot hole, but it's now bugging me.
Sep. 4th, 2015 05:03 pm (UTC)
If the thingie catches up with you and kills you, it swivels back to the person who infected you. The thingie's motivation is never in any way explained or explored, which bothered me as well. I don't need much of an explanation, but I need =something=.
Sep. 4th, 2015 07:32 pm (UTC)
So, basically, an infected person wants to hope beyond hope that the person they sleep with gets to sleep with someone else quickly, and so on and so on, so they can find themselves well back in the queue. Sure. That's makes perfect sense.

No. No it doesn't.

Not that I was going to see it, but thanks for warning me off anyway.
Sep. 4th, 2015 07:39 pm (UTC)
I took a hit for the team.
Sep. 4th, 2015 08:29 pm (UTC)
You are a fine and thoughtful man. I hope Darwin realizes how lucky he is.
Sep. 4th, 2015 02:50 pm (UTC)
Just out of curiosity, what did Darwin think of it, he being the horror fan?
Sep. 4th, 2015 05:04 pm (UTC)
Darwin hated it more than I did, and that took some doing! :)
( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
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