I’ve said this countless times, but it bears repeating. Every year at Fantasia, I try to get into the zone to pick the best movies. Yes, I’ve managed to skip a few stinkers, but playing it safe rarely nets me the strange finds. Hence, I took a risk and I’m glad to have gone with It Comes. I know I’m giving away the review early, but I found it totally worth it. It’s a horror film that I found amazing to watch although it’s not entirely unflawed. It just worked for me. Now it’s my task to try to get you to watch it without giving it away.

(Photo: Toho Company)

It Comes was crafted by director Tetsuya Nakashima who wrote it with Hideto Iwai, Nobuhiro Kadoma. It’s an adaptation of a famous novel by Ichi Sawamura. The story, as lightly as I’m going to touch it, starts with a newlywed couple that will soon welcome their first child. Hideki (Satoshi Tsumabuki) and Kana (Haru Kuroki) name the child Chisa, a name that comes to Hideki from an unknown visitor that came to his workplace but never waited to meet him. Hideki has been assaulted by old memories of a childhood friend that disappeared. Strange things are happening around Chisa. By the time he calls upon occult writer Nozaki (Junichi Okada) and his exorcist girlfriend Makoto (Nana Komatsu) it might be too late.

To say this film gets bonkers, might not be entirely accurate. The story twists and turns as time passes, sometimes going to back to review what looked fine and was secretly already messed up. I am purposely not going to clear this up because I think the story will chime most the first time around when seeing it without any preconceptions. It’s firmly into the horror genre with a generous helping of the ludicrous. That will be either your cup of tea or it won’t, but I urge you to stick around. Things will get crazy and bloody and more characters will get mixed, each one more over the top than the previous one. The colour palette of the cinematography has comic-book levels of insanity that makes for such vibrant images that made me often feel more entranced than scared. That might not bode well for a horror film, but it kept me engaged and invested throughout the story.

Highly recommended for fans of horror films with eerie visuals. The horror never disappears, the blood will always flow but there’s a fantastic element mixed in. You will enjoy this more in a dark theatre with an appreciative audience willing to get sucked in. The film structure is not without its flaws, but it’s overall highly engaging. The storytelling keeps revealing these layers as we’re introduced to new characters and rediscover something new about the ones we already know. I can see how it could throw off some audiences, so it might be an acquired taste. But chances are if you’re in Fantasia, this one might just be the roller coaster for you.

That will do for now.