Friday, October 26, 2018

31 Days of Dread--Day 26

It Comes at Night; 2017; written and directed by Trey Edward Shults

I suspect It Comes at Night was given that name primarily for marketing purposes. It makes for a compelling title, a great-looking poster, and the trailer does a fine job of giving the impression that something dangerous is out there, pressing against all the doors and windows.

However, a more accurate title might be It Gets Inside. Because what's out there isn't limited to the night hours. It can get inside at any time. Inside a secluded house deep in the woods. Inside the characters' heads, leading them to lie and steal and murder in order to protect their families. And inside their bodies, causing a terrifying illness that's already killed most of the population.

But that criticism aside, It Comes at Night is still a powerful and moving post-apocalyptic thriller that preys on the minds of both its characters and viewers. The story centers on a family who's managed to survive a global pandemic only by adhering to a strict set of rules, and the second family they reluctantly take in after one of its members shows up at their door.

Of course, if the title was It Gets Inside, that would probably be a bit of a spoiler. Because eventually the fragile trust between the two groups dissolves, their tight security measures fail, and the deadly pathogen they've been trying so desperately to avoid eventually claims them all.

To anyone who watches these kinds of movies that shouldn't really come as much of a surprise. The bad thing--monster, slasher, demon, you name it--always manages to break past all defenses and wreak some havoc. That's pretty much the whole point. 

The question is, does the bad thing in the story also manage to get inside you? And in It Comes at Night, it does.

It Comes at Night is available on Amazon Prime and streaming rental.

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