I guess since it’s Halloween, I should look at a horror movie. And since we’re in the middle of a pandemic, I guess I should look at a pandemic horror movie?
It Comes At Night is an A24 release and that alone is what drew me to the film because everything I’ve seen from the small studio has been very good (or at least the trailers are). And whereas some of their other movies are very memorable and in a number of cases chilling, this one is a bit of a tropey typical “people trapped together in a house in an apocalypse movie”.
In a house somewhere in the countryside–a place that is deliberately “off the grid”–a family is quarantining because of a deadly virus that is sweeping across the land and has decimated society. They are couple Paul and Sarah (Joel Edgerton, Carmen Ejogo) and their son Travis (Kelvin Harrison, Jr.). At the beginning of the film, they have just buried Sarah’s father and when it seems that the house is being broken into, they discover a man named Will (Christopher Abbott), who had thought the place was abandoned. He and his wife Kim (Riley Keough) are fighting for their own survival along with their son Andrew (Griffin Robert Faulkner). Probably against their better judgment, Paul and Sarah let the family stay with them, and things go well for quite a while … until it doesn’t.
I understand why this movie got a pretty positive response from audiences. The performances are very solid, especially Kelvin Harrison Jr.’s Travis, who is the story’s protagonist and struggles with visions he keeps seeing along with feelings he seems to be developing for Kim. Keough is also excellent and I’m curious to see her performance in The Lodge. And Edgerton and Ejogo have some solid chemistry and are able to get the movie’s tension across rather skillfully. But I think I was expecting more, as if there was some sort of “It” that actually comes or perhaps a different ending? I’m not entirely sure.
There are worse movies like this, but I suppose there are also better. At the end of the day, I’d rather check out something else.
Rent or Skip?