Saturday, 22 July 2017

It Comes At Night Film Review

I saw It Comes At Night last week, directed by Trey Edward Shults. It had a promise of horror buzz.

Set in the US backwoods after an unidentified Cloverfield event has unleashed a plague style killer virus, Joel Egerton's Paul, a husband and father, and son Travis played by Kelvin Harrison Jr., mercy kill grandfather then bury and burn his body. Travis's mother Sarah (Carmen Ejogo) tells Paul that Travis is too young to have seen what happened, but Paul admits he couldn't do it without his help. Travis then relives the event and his grandfather's poor wrecked body in his dreams every night while he wanders among the shadows and torch light.

One night a break-in to the heavily fortified house brings Christopher Abbott's Will, looking for anything that can help his family and he thought the house abandoned. Tied to a tree overnight to determine whether he is infected, Paul eventually goes with him to bring back his wife Kim, played by Riley Keough, and son.

The rules are explained including that the doors, windows and guns are kept locked with Paul having the keys, never travel outside except in pairs, never go out at night etc. But the two families enjoy their time together helping each other. Travis secretly listens in to Will and Kim's night time talk from the attic and one night finds their son has slept walk but takes him back to his room.

Travis's dog runs off after a commotion in the woods and Paul seems unsettled with this new event. When the dog comes back and is infected Paul and Will kill and burn his body. At dinner Travis describes what happened. He was up in the night and took the little boy back to bed when he heard something downstairs. But the door had already been unlocked. Who unlocked it? Paul decides that they should be apart for a while in their separate rooms.

The gnawing feeling of terror descends, and the two families mistrusting each other take enough provisions for a few days. But Travis in the attic hears Will and Kim say they are leaving, and want their share of the provisions to take away. They did bring goats and chickens with them so it seems only fair.

But the horrors that may exist outside are multiplied in the shady lights inside, as the film thunders to it's shocking conclusion. Suspicions abound and are never explained, and we make our own minds up about the final scene. Paranoia in an apocalypse can be as scary as bumps in the night.

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