IT FOLLOWS

This moody thriller crawls in on a wave of positive buzz from festivals (it screened at Cannes, Sundance and Toronto among others), and one can see why: it’s the ideal “horror” movie for the latte set, strong on atmospherics and not at all interested in blood, violence or (except for one or two) cheap scares. Teenage splatter flicks have always found a link between sex and death (the first couple to boink is usually the first to die), but here, the demon unleashed by intercourse is more disturbing than a simple cut throat or impalement. There’s nothing religious about it, but it’s as though there’s a lingering (eternal?) price to pay for every penetration, an Original Sin that cannot be expunged or expiated, or even transferred to the next bedmate, try though the victims do. Quietly acted and deliberately paced, the movie would not work as well as it does without the counterbalancing, overheated score by Rich Vreeland (who goes by “Disasterpeace”) which gooses up the emotion even as the characters mostly sit and wait for their stalkers to appear. If this review sounds vague, it’s because IT FOLLOWS is more feeling than story, and the irresolution at the end may leave you frustrated. Or impressed. It’s definitely worth seeing. — Jeff Schultz

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