If you come across the title of the horror film “It Follows,” and you find it difficult to understand what the movie is about, then the movie has already achieved its goal. It Follows (2014) is written and directed by David Robert Mitchell. He openly acknowledges the influence of movies like “Halloween” and “A Nightmare on Elm Street” on his own horror hit.

You can sense hints of Carpenter and shades of Craven throughout the film, but Mitchell’s unique voice still shines through. The story of the movie is a clever combination of J-horror elements and the familiar concept of a relentless stalker slowly approaching a terrified protagonist. But unlike the typical masked killer, this stalker can be an old lady in pajamas or an ordinary girl in a schoolyard. But the movie concludes on a confusing note, leaving plenty of room for interpretation. For this review, I will break down the story, explore the main ideas, and take a closer look at the events in detail.

It Follows (2014) Plot Summary and Movie Synopsis:

The story starts with Jay, who goes to meet her new boyfriend. After they have sex in the car, he ties her up and tells her about a curse called “It” that has been following him. Now, “It” will also chase her and can show up looking like anyone, known or unknown, and it’s untouchable. The only option is to avoid it.

Jay is the only person capable of seeing this creature, regardless of the form it assumes. If this creature manages to catch Jay, it will end her life. To prevent herself from being the next victim, Jay has to give the curse to someone else. This is because the creature only chases one person at a time. The first target is the most recent person who received the curse, then it moves on to the person who passed it to them, and so on in a chain.

Jay and her friends decide to believe the story, even though there is no actual proof. They choose not to pass on the curse and instead work together to kill “It” once and for all. This leads to a thrilling and confusing climax where they come up with a plan similar to those seen in Scooby-Doo episodes. They use various household appliances plugged into the pool’s edges to electrocute the curse. The outcome is filled with suspense and horror.

A still from It Follows (2014).
A still from It Follows (2014).

It Follows (2014) Movie Ending, Explained:

How does It Follows End?

At the end of the movie, Jay doesn’t want the curse anymore, so her close friend Greg says he’ll take it instead. But Greg doesn’t know how dangerous the curse is, and he dies. So, the curse goes back to Jay. She figures out that the curse is a real thing that can be hurt. Jay and her friends come up with a plan to bring the curse to a swimming pool and kill it by throwing electronic things into the water.

The movie drops hints that the curse is smart and can’t be easily fooled. For example, it climbs onto Jay’s roof and breaks into Greg’s house by smashing a window. When the curse reaches the swimming pool, it shocks Jay and her friends by looking like her dad. It throws electronic stuff at Jay, trying to make her leave the pool. One of Jay’s friends has to get close to it and shoots it with a gun, making it fall into the pool. While Jay attempts to leave the pool, the creature grabs her leg and almost pulls her back in, but Paul shoots it in the head, saving Jay. In the water, there is no visible body, just a lot of blood.

Did Jay manage to get rid of the curse?

After the entity kills Greg, some time goes by before it comes back to bother Jay. This tells us that there is a wait between passing it to someone else and it coming back. Jay and Paul don’t really know what the entity is, so they have sex and pass the curse back and forth to each other, using the time gaps to their advantage.

But, similar to all the information they gather about the curse in the movie, the time gaps between passing it to others are only guesses. Director David Robert Mitchell mentioned in an interview that every “rule” regarding the creature is explained by Hugh, who, like Jay, had limited knowledge apart from personal experiences. It remains uncertain whether the entity actually died at the pool, and it is also unclear if Jay and Paul’s casual sex strategy will be effective.

After the pool incident, the creature is not shown directly, and the movie makes us think that Jay and her friends beat it. The movie uses uncertainty to mess with our heads, creating a constant feeling of fear even after the movie ends. The person walking behind Jay and Paul in the final scene could be a regular person or the creature, and we can’t be sure.

Is there a way to defeat the creature?

A sequel isn’t necessary for “It Follows” because the audience and the characters’ lack of knowledge about the creature is what makes it truly terrifying. The characters can only make assumptions about the curse, and there are no explanations or weaknesses revealed. The scariest part of the movie is the mysterious nature of the creature that can haunt people without being seen. The characters could have tried various methods to get rid of it, such as burying it or moving far away, yet they would never be certain it won’t come back somehow.

What is the scary truth behind the ending?

The unusual curse in the movie cleverly serves as an allegory for sexually transmitted diseases. It also tackles topics like sexual education and toxic masculinity. It shows that Jay, being a girl, faces unfair expectations. The movie creates fear by keeping things unknown, making it scarier than other horror films. The victims are always afraid that the curse will come back. Even though it may seem like it’s gone, it never really leaves you, proving that destiny cannot be escaped.

Read More: The 10 Best Horror Movies of 2022

It Follows (2014) Movie Trailer

It Follows (2014) Movie Links: IMDb, Rotten Tomatoes
It Follows (2014) Movie Cast: Maika Monroe, Keir Gilchrist, Olivia Luccardi
Where to watch It Follows

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