(This post could contain some spoilers... sorry about that. )
Initially, I was pretty excited for this film to come out. With critics raving: "One of the most striking American horror films in years" - The Dissolve "...still manages to feel like no other example in recent years - The telegraph "...intelligent and terrifying, an instant genre classic. - Sacramento News and review "...without doubt the scariest movie you will see this year. And probably next year, too. - The National
And about 500 more sassy quotes if you want to see for yourself. The film has a 98% rating with Rotten Tomatoes. With the film being touted as a game changer, I couldn't wait to see what this was all about.
And, I was pretty disappointed.
I had the perfect stormy night setting and some wine. I was pleasantly surprised to see the outdated neighborhoods and the abandoned Northville Psychiatric building from back home in Metro Detroit where it was filmed. I appreciate the vintage feel captured with the film and the simplicity.
The opening scene was great and captured me. A girl was upset and running. Eventually we see her stopped on a beach, sitting in the light of her car's headlights and making what we find to be her last phone call. Cut scene to her eerily mangled body. Great.
The story though, is where it was all lacking for me.
Really? An STD like manifestation? I get that other viewers appreciated a modern day allegory but I really think the last thing society needs is another film to scare teenagers into thinking twice before getting it on.
The story is like swiss cheese. There is no explanation for why this happened, why are they after these kids who commit the act, why there are multiple spirits, why do the spirits rape them to death and why passing it on makes it better pretty much temporarily. Essentially, they will be running forever...from slow moving ghosts. (I'm sure some people will argue that since the kids in the film don't have these answers, you are supposed to be just as clueless.)
If you think about it, The Ring has a very similar premise of 'passing something on', being chased and being cursed. However, the whole movie is spent uncovering the story of why these things were happening.
It follows did not explain... it was just chase.
Overall Ratings-- Scare Factor: A few jumps and disturbing images but... mostly running from slow moving ghosts. Rating: ❤