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When I was thirteen, I’d often get ads for a movie called “It Follows” whenever I’d binge watch videos on YouTube. Most of the time, these ads were weren’t skippable, so I’d be forced to watch these terrifying scenes of a young woman being pursued by seemingly normal people. As someone who had a fear of being followed – thanks to “The Strangers” (2008) – these ads absolutely terrified me, and I vowed to never watch this film in full no matter what. 

Well, on Saturday, I broke thirteen-year old me’s promise and watched “It Follows.” While I would like to be apologetic, I have to say I’m not. In fact, I’m quite annoyed with myself for not checking out this gem of a movie until recently. 

For those of you who don’t know, “It Follows” is a supernatural-psychological horror film that was released back in 2014. Written and directed by David Robert Mitchell, the film follows Jamie “Jay” Height (Maika Monroe), a college student who is relentlessly pursued by a supernatural entity after sexual intercourse with her boyfriend. 

This entity is transmitted only through sexual intercourse, and is thus only seen by those who’ve had it transferred onto them. Most of the film deals with Jay debating whether she should transfer the entity onto someone else or find a way to destroy it, all while being chased by the entity. 

The film’s plot was what first caught my interest. It’s unique and hasn’t been done before – to my knowledge, at least – so it definitely held my attention. I also love how the film doesn’t try to over explain itself. All the audience gets is a brief overview of the entity; we don’t know what exactly “it” is, or where “it” came from. The entity’s unknownness is what makes the film so terrifying, in my opinion. 

In horror films, we take comfort from knowing what the threat is. When we don’t know what it is that’s attacking our protagonist, and when they’re in the dark just like we are, it’s terrifying. There’s nothing to give us any sort of comfort on how the threat can be dealt with. 

Another thing I loved about “It Follows” was the soundtrack. The film’s score was composed by Disasterpeace (Richard Vreeland), an American composer and musician who mostly worked on soundtracks for video games until “It Follows.” 

In a 2015 interview with CinemaKnifeFights Barry Lee Dejas for the series “Scoring Horror Presents,” Vreeland says he came to work on “It Follows” due to Mitchell being a fan of his work on “Fez,” a 2012 puzzle-platform video game. Vreeland says while composing the score of a feature-length film is more stressful than video games, it was all worth it – and I agree with him.

The score for “It Follows” is absolutely amazing. I love the use of synths and electronic sounds and how they can convey feelings of terror, hope, and sadness. I can see the soundtrack becoming iconic just like previous ones of the horror genre.

The final thing I adore about “It Follows” is the cast. Horror film scripts (especially ones centered on young adults) tend to make their characters unlikable and annoying, but with “It Follows,” I didn’t get any of that. The characters do make questionable choices here and there, but their portrayals are realistic and not overbearing. You can’t help but root for them. 

If you haven’t seen “It Follows,” I highly recommend it. I believe it’s one of the best horror films of the 2010s and deserves to be seen by many.

Jordyn is a junior at the University of Kentucky majoring in Psychology and minoring in Journalism Studies. She loves writing fiction stories, but enjoys partaking in a bit of non-fiction writing, too. In the future, she hopes to either become a clinical psychologist or an author.
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