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Thursday
Jul272017

It Comes at Night- review

 

“It Comes at Night” (2017)

Directed by Trey Edward Shults

Starring Joel Edgerton,  Christopher Abbott,  Carmen Ejogo

Running time 91 Minutes, Rated R

3 Mitch’s out of 5

Mitch Hansch/movieswithmitch.com

 

If minimalistically bleak is considered a film genre or at least a sub genre, then add Trey Edward Shults “It Comes at Night” to that list.

It appears to be the very beginning of the apocalypse, but we’re not given much deets.  A deadly disease that kills within 48 hours has broken out in major cities, and we’re only seeing the perspective of a family of three that was able to make it out and is literally walled up in their remote woodland house.  There were four, but the opening scene shows grandpa infected and therefore his daughter Sarah (Carmen Ejogo), her patriarch husband Paul (Joel Edgerton), and their 17 year old son Travis (David Harrison Jr.) provide a mercy kill by putting him in a wheelbarrow, shooting him in the head, and kerosene torching him in a 6 foot ditch so as not to spread the disease.  

 

We see through the perspectives of Paul, the rigid rule setter trying to keep his family safe above all else and the emotional core from Travis whose nights are haunted by horror induced visuals.  One night an intruder comes along, which Paul intercedes and leaves bound to a tree for a few days.  The intruder, Will (Christopher Abbott), says he was just looking for supplies to take care of his own family.  Eventually Will brings his wife and their toddler son back to their house, and they share commune; under Paul’s strict rules of course.  Some of the best tension in the film comes from Shults’ making it so there is always just a sliver, and I mean sliver, of doubt about Will and what his intentions are.  We really know just as much as Paul, Sarah, and Travis do, and that’s where the film’s real horror comes from.  

By being so minimalistic, we eventually catch on that Travis’ vivid nightmares aren’t presented as such and are really nothing more; as a result I was never really scared from such scenes.  The cinematography really pops in this film, the red door at the end of the hallway isn’t just red, it’s dangerously red.  A fine job of casting as well, especially with the coo of landing Joel Edgerton.  Once again he showcases a strong brutality but one out of necessity and care.  Edgerton has the ability to really show you the stakes of the film and what’s up to gain and even more what there is to lose.

“It Comes at Night” is soul crushingly bleak.  Check it out if that’s your sort of thing.  

Luke 21:36

 

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