It Comes at Night (2017)
June 10, 2017 11:29 AM - Subscribe

A father will stop at nothing to protect his wife and son from a malevolent, mysterious presence terrorizing them right outside their doorstep.
posted by phunniemee (20 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I've been tremendously curious about this one, but it's one of those premises that could turn out either great or terrible in the execution. Can't wait to hear some MeFite opinions.
posted by tobascodagama at 4:25 PM on June 10, 2017

I thought it was extremely well executed, and is the kind of movie that'll really piss off the kind of folks who go to "horror" movies expecting "horror movies".
posted by phunniemee at 4:44 PM on June 10, 2017 [9 favorites]

But .. but those are the best horror movies.....
posted by Pendragon at 2:18 AM on June 11, 2017

I haven't heard of this. Bwaha it has an 86%/44% on RT, which is an amusing split.

Audience scores for horror movies are always low, though. Like what do fans even want? Is it a genre that attracts but always disappoints? Is it just the RT community? Are the fans embarrassed somehow and need to cover for it by putting the movie down? Are so many of the fans just horrible genre nerds who are impossible to please?
posted by fleacircus at 4:44 AM on June 11, 2017 [2 favorites]

Are so many of the fans just horrible genre nerds who are impossible to please?

Go look at the relative scores for something like Saw. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
posted by phunniemee at 4:59 AM on June 11, 2017 [2 favorites]

To quote the guy in the row behind me, "the scary part is we paid money to see that."
posted by STFUDonnie at 7:03 PM on June 12, 2017

So, how did the keys that the father have factor into the opening of the door? That felt like a weird dangling concept.
posted by olya at 7:52 PM on June 12, 2017

Also, I didn't quite think that the "selling point" in summary about "unnatural terror" is fair / correct. This read as a "post apocalyptic" horror genre.
posted by olya at 7:53 PM on June 12, 2017 [3 favorites]

It's an A24 film which means I would have watched it, regardless. It's very much an invisible dread movie. I loved it, everyone else in our theater (just a few people) loudly complained that they paid for nothing and what the hell even was that?

So, if you enjoyed A24 films like Into the Forest, The VVitch, or The Invitation (from XYZ Films), you might enjoy it.

It might be more rental-worthy for some viewers, but it's a great claustrophobic film.
posted by Unicorn on the cob at 11:10 PM on June 12, 2017 [3 favorites]

I liked this a lot, although it wasn't what I was expecting. I don't consider it a "horror" picture, really, at least not in the sense that "The Witch" was. I'd place it more in the thriller genre. It reminded me a bit of "The Rover," which certainly wasn't horror (although in fairness, I might just be associating them largely because of the Joel Edgerton connection).

I have one question about something that puzzled both my husband and me: when Paul and Will are driving to pick up Will's family, Paul shoots and kills the person who attacks them. So far so good. But when Paul puts the man's body under the uprooted tree, we see that there are two bodies -- the man Paul shot and...someone else. Who is the someone else, and where did he come from? We saw only one man, not two, attack the truck. It looks as though the second guy died recently, so it's not someone Paul killed earlier, and in any event, there's no indication that Paul had ever been in that portion of the woods before, so it's not as though that was sort of a grave site where Paul buried people. What did I miss?

Unicorn on the cob, thanks for pointing out the A24 connection; I loved "The Witch" and liked "The Invitation" (although with reservations), so now I'm going to seek out "Into the Forest."
posted by holborne at 8:40 AM on June 14, 2017 [2 favorites]

No, I'm pretty sure there were two people who attacked? The guy who was shooting at the truck who Paul had to duck from and then shot and also the guy Will was working over who also got shot, after the first guy. I could be wrong (I definitely need to watch this again) but I do seem to remember there being two active people in the attack.
posted by phunniemee at 8:56 AM on June 14, 2017

Oh, ok -- I totally missed that. It might have had something to do with the fact that my screening was basically like watching the movie in Grand Central Station; for some bizarre reason people kept showing up late and texting their friends to find where in the theater they were seated and then walking back and forth. And I guess there was something about Joel Edgerton that made people want to pee because every two seconds someone got up to go to the bathroom (or at least I assume that's where they were going). So I was a bit distracted throughout.
posted by holborne at 9:16 AM on June 14, 2017

(Maybe they were sleepwalking?)
posted by phunniemee at 9:30 AM on June 14, 2017 [3 favorites]

posted by phunniemee at 9:30 AM on June 14, 2017

my SO and I were just having an argument about the two guy thing. I was so sure that there was only one guy that I was quite dubious of my SO's theory that two guys attacked.

also, these teenagers in front of us at the end were all where were the zombies? And one girl burst out, "But I don't know HOW to feel!"

but, seriously, there were really two guys attacking? I thought the second body was one of those things that was supposed to make you feel more dread, like wtf happened to the dog in the woods? Did the houseguest really have a brother?
posted by angrycat at 7:26 PM on June 17, 2017 [1 favorite]

So wow I just saw that. I walked out in such a daze. I think I enjoyed it? But man that final scene, and the final shot itself!!! It was such an intense set of feelings and emotions.

Spoiler here::

I was reading a review and it said that in the final shot, it was clear the parents were sick as well. I didn't pick up on that, were they actually and I missed it?

Also yeah there were two guys attacking, one Paul shot from under the truck, and the other was the one Will was beating up (an interesting foreshadow for the final scene).
posted by Carillon at 11:40 PM on June 17, 2017

Yeah, I thought it was clear that the parents were sick in the last scene; you could see the lesions on Sarah's arm for sure.
posted by holborne at 6:29 AM on June 18, 2017

Just saw it yesterday. Came away with some very mixed feelings but I'm really glad I saw it and will have to watch it again when it's available for rental.

There were moments I was so swept up in the sheer beauty of the filmmaking -- the cinematography, the camera movements, the lighting, and the incredible music -- that I thought I was going to come away thinking it was a masterpiece. In the end, I didn't feel that way, in part because I felt I was being asked, as a viewer, to do a heck of a lot of work to figure out what was happening -- so much so that I think it distracted from the atmosphere and tension and my ability to care more deeply about the characters.

I also had incredibly high expectations after having recently watched the director's first film, Krisha. That was such an emotionally gut-punching masterpiece, and such an original film and unique cinematic experience, that I expected a LOT from this going in. It was very, very good, and beautifully made, and I'm glad I saw it -- but it ultimately fell just short of something I'd recommend as passionately as I'd recommend Krisha.
posted by treepour at 7:38 PM on June 19, 2017 [1 favorite]

I just watched this last night.

My comments:

I too was left wondering how exactly Andrew the little boy got to the dog when Paul had made such a point of having the only key. And the whole deal with having two doors, forming an "airlock" of sorts... Which door did Travis find open? The inside door, the outside door? How did the dog get in?

The attack was by two men. Paul went under the truck and then shoot one man. He then came out and came around to the rear of the truck to find Will attacking another man with his fists. Paul pulled him off and shot the second man dead. Then he and Will had an argument about if Will was setting Paul up and Paul killing the second man too fast when they should have kept him alive to interrogate him. Then they took the bodies into the forest to that wood thing that I took to be the two attackers' shelter.

Did Will really have a brother? Were Will and Kim lying in general? The first time Travis crawled up into the attic to eavesdrop on Will and Kim, the two were talking about things that seemed to me to be about their history and then one of them mentioned "holes" or something. I got the impression they were trying to fabricate a plausible story of where they had come from.

Was there really anything unnatural lurking out in the woods besides their paranoia? I don't think so.

And yes, I took Paul and Sarah to be sick at the end.

I watched the movie on Kanopy for anyone who is interested. Kanopy has a large selection of A24 movies. Overall the movie was okay. I liked the Paul character and Will was convincing. The scene with Kim and Travis in the kitchen in the middle of the night was appropriately awkward the longer it went on. But in the end, the ambiguity surrounding the doors, intentional or not, kind of ruins the movie for me.
posted by Fukiyama at 8:11 AM on October 3, 2019

So. Is the "it" nocturnal nightmares/sleepwalking that presage the onset of visible symptoms? I suppose if they were all sick by the end then it could have been Paul that opened the door, in a stupor, without realising it.
posted by chill at 12:59 AM on November 5, 2020

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