Pronouns — terrifying, right? At least when they don’t have antecedents, that is. There’s suspense baked right into the title of It Comes At Night, the upcoming feature from Trey Edward Shults, director of last year’s self-assured debut Krisha. So what is the ‘it,’ and why is it coming at night? The attendees of the Overlook Film Festival are keeping mum, having gotten the first glimpse at the film this past weekend when it popped up as the festival’s secret surprise screening. They offered rapturous but spoiler-free praise, but luckily for the rest of us, the first full trailer and a new poster have surfaced to shed a little light on what’s going on while simultaneously compounding the mystery.

The trailer plays details of plot and character pretty close to the vest, privileging mood and tone to create an atmosphere of terror instead. At least we recognize Joel Edgerton (who recently described this very film as “incredibly intelligent”) once he pulls off the gas mask. He appears to be some manner of survivalist, finding some small semblance of safety by establishing total self-sufficiency in the deep backwoods. Safety from what, you ask? From it. Riley Keough may have something to do with it, dribbling a viscous liquid from her mouth after breaking off a kiss. Other frightfully unnatural elements float through this enigmatic trailer (add “Why is Girls star Christopher Abbott bound to a tree?” to the list of this trailer’s burning questions) but what’s been made abundantly clear is that Shults has cooked up something distinctive and terrifying even in miniature.

The general public will get a clue as to the true nature of It Comes At Night on June 9 (this film counts as Shults’ personal birthday present to me, just a fun fact), but curious parties can try to glean hints from the new poster below as well. Just try not to get sick this summer.


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