Krisha director Trey Edward Shults’ upcoming horror movie, It Comes at Night, now has a full trailer, climaxing in intercut text that reads, “fear turns men into monsters.”
The film sees a couple — played by Riley Keough and Christopher Abbott — joining a family played by Carmen Ejogo, Joel Egerton, and Kelvin Harrison Jr. in a post-something-or-other residence in the middle of the woods. Overseen by the patriarch (Egerton), everyone can leave the house during the day, but by night everyone’s dead-bolted in, for fear of something evil that hangs around the cabin.
After the door is left unlocked one night, that something may or may not infiltrate the house, thereby possessing and evil-ing the residents — that is, if that something presumably isn’t already inside them. Egerton’s character wears a gas mask when he steps outside during the day; it seems there’s some sort of “sickness” they’re all dodging. Alex Rivello wrote for /Film, in an early review, that it’s “claustrophobic and full of pure dread, a film where no one feels safe and things can get worse at any moment.”
From the looks of this post-apocalyptic (????) film, the horror likely comes internally. Some of the best horror movies in recent memory were The Witch and Get Out, both of which focused so meticulously on character interiority and anxiety that the audience was led to wonder if what they were seeing really was or wasn’t supernatural, before the films revealed twists with deep social implications. (Even if in The Witch, those implications were simply embedded within the old American lore on which it’s based.) It Comes at Night, from the just-released full trailer, looks like it may play a similar game with audiences. Is apocalypse real? Or is the real danger perhaps just a dark element of human nature? Or maybe it’s both. (Joel Egerton, one of the film’s stars, told Entertainment Weekly, “For me, the film is about refugees and immigration and otherness. I thought that was really interesting to explore in the horror realm.” So there’s also that.)
Whatever it is, from Shults’ first feature — in which he turned a dialogue-light Thanksgiving dinner into a work of intense psychological angst — we can assume that there’s something more than a typical apocalypse survival tale at the core of this film.
It Comes at Night premiered at the Overlook Film Festival this weekend, and will be out on June 9. Check out the trailer and poster: