Let it never be said that you can't end the world on a tiny budget. Mis-marketed as a horror movie, it suffers a bit from vagueness: a vague post-apocalyptic scenario and a vague "it" yielding a vague allegory—something about paranoia, something about American isolation, maybe something about race—that feels like a short film padded to a feature. I will say this, though: the last act is a fantastic payoff.
Shults follows "Krisha" with a sophomore film that also evokes feelings of paranoia and claustrophobia, and this time around it's not just one person facing a family meeting but two families on some kind of post-apocalyptic scenario. All the things left unanswered just made it even creepier. Another small-scale but effective work.
Psychological drama with some terror mis-marketed as a terrifying horror film. Sure the performances were okay, and the photography was quite nice, but the story was a paint-by-numbers. I predicted the ending as soon as the little boy is found sleeping in a room by himself. Nothing about this is fresh or new, but I'm always interested to see another crack at a psychological story during the apocalypse.
Wow! This is really wall put together with a steady and gradual ratcheting of dread and paranoia that plays out in an easy to identify with family dynamic. Great performance across the board but the real strength is in it's playing for subtext and all of the things left unsaid.4 stars
It's hard, having seen it in a theater full of people stunned unto nonplussed whispers, bullshit-calling mockery, and pissed-off, refund-hungry invective, not to mention, and rue, the bait-and-switch of the film's marketing. Still, had those rubes rolled with it, they'd have found a simple, precise film about family, desire and disease, about borders and others, and it would have scared them, and broken their hearts.
As Shults already demonstrated in his debut, he has a fine sense for the nuances of interpersonal harmony / disharmony and the possibilities for estrangement inherent in human spaces. He has a good eye, and an interesting sensibility. That doesn't mean he can make a movie about the pointlessness of struggle and the meaninglessness of human existence particularly rewarding. I felt nothing beyond a kind of glum accord.
Shults moves, from the 'family horror' of "Krisha" , closer to genre horror with this survivalist thriller that is a measure in both tension and confusion. Like his debut film it suffers from the comparison of what the audience expectation is versus the actual result and eventually succumbs to its own limitations. Mind you anything this adverse to convention in the local multiplex is worth trumpeting for.
I can't blame a distributor for wanting to sell their product to the widest audience possible, but "It Comes at Night" is perhaps misleadingly marketed as a horror film. Its DNA is much closer to a movie like Jeff Nichols "Take Shelter" or even M. Night Shyamalan's "The Village," in which genre trappings are deployed merely as window dressing to tell a human drama about mistrust, paranoia, and adolescent awakening.