Paranoia is just a kind of awareness, and awareness is just another form of love. -Charles Manson
The blood of love welled up in my heart with a slow pain. -Sylvia Plath
Fear is pain arising from the anticipation of evil. -Aristotle
Most of the evil in this world is done by people with good intentions. -T.S. Eliot

Boutique studio A24 has made a name for themselves by doing things differently — that goes for the movies they buy, how they’re released, and especially how they’re promoted. The latest trailer for their upcoming thriller It Comes At Night mercifully eschews the Inception BRAAAHM and the sad pop cover for a novel approach, pairing context-free images from the film with various disturbing quotes about fear, distrust, and evil. Instead of using pull-quotes from glowing reviews, the A24 marketing team figured they couldn’t get an endorsement more ringing than one of serial murderer Charles Manson’s family motto.

A24 deserves points for originality, but It Comes At Night simply isn’t the film this trailer is selling. That’s not meant as a diss or anything, just that the specific tone of Trey Edward Shults’ latest — which falls much closer to slow-burn psycho-suspense rather than out-and-out horror — is difficult to succinctly communicate in the space of a trailer. As a family takes shelter from an unseen threat in a secluded woodland cabin, Shults taunts the audience with vague suggestions of what the It that Comes At Night might be, but he never barrels into the full-bore insanity hinted at by the trailer. Again, not a complaint, more a case of calling a cupcake a cookie.

It Comes At Night will come at night on June 9, at which point tonally misleading trailers will be rendered irrelevant. Best-case scenario, we get another situation like the lady who went to see Drive and got mad it when it wasn’t a high-octane action thrill ride. I can hear it now: “A patient, reserved, withholding examination of insecurity during times of crisis? I thought this was The Strangers 2!”

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