Film Micrœview #240: It Follows (2014)
09.28.2015 § Leave a comment
Great production design – really captured the horror of suburbia. Great camerawork – lighting captured the colors of the sets perfectly, and the slow spinning nailed that feeling of the thing coming at you from any direction at any time. The acting wasn’t half bad either.
The central conceit of the film is compelling, both on the intellectual and the visceral level. My mind is still mulling over the implications of the decisions in this scenario, the sort of original sin / little death nature of the horror, the struggle to bury yourself deeper and deeper in sexual handshake continuity distance from the source of your trauma, the mechanics of being a hero by sleeping with the target, the mechanics of choosing whether to help the person you pass it to survive or just essentially murder them indirectly to buy time, the fact that once you’re on the list you can NEVER sleep easy, etc. And the slow but steady ceaseless approach of the horror is legitimately scary, knowing that no matter what what it is doing out there somewhere is heading straight toward you, is still kind of unsettling me the next day.
Unfortunately the film didn’t go as far as it could have with some of the aforementioned ideas, and at times got a little frustrating/annoying/tedious. I could have done without that random feeling character making offhand remarks about the “wrong side of the tracks” and readings from Dostoyevsky. In particular the cross-fade edits felt quite disjointed at times and disrupted the flow. And while the invisibility to others who aren’t on its list felt profoundly intertwined with the psychology of it all, the tangibility-in-invisibility, the somewhat-vincibility and it’s cloud of blood form, the shapeshifting, the somewhat-sentience and its weird moment standing (not walking) on a rooftop, and the reveal to be weirdly sexual element of the horror’s killings themselves all took away from its wonderment.
The primary reason I watched this in the first place was the Disasterpeace score. Unfortunately, though in and of itself it was great, and probably suited the movie well, I was unable to separate it from my experience with his score to the game Fez. Fez is one of the greatest games of all time, due in no small part to the thoughtfulness and thorough intertwinedness of the score. And unfortunately the score to It Follows is so, so, so similar to the score of Fez that for a couple tracks it seems like a mere reworking. It feels like the director of It Follows used Fez songs in test edits and then forced Disasterpeace to produce new tracks that were as similar as possible without being technically copyright infringement. So for me, I felt this huge disjunction between the suburbia and the 4D fantasy world of Fez the whole time.