An inevitable fact: Everyone dies. This is a reality that everyone faces, and everyone goes through. Mark Edwin Robinson’s original film “I Will Follow You Into the Dark” explores death and the aftermath from a daughter’s point of view. The film goes from a sad journey through the steps of grief into a dark, twisted adventure through the bowels of what can only be described as a worst nightmare in order to find love and peace.
The film starts off on a somber note which carries through the majority of the film, and one of realism. Barton’s somber yet graceful approach to Sophia instantly makes the audience fall in love with her and want to stand by her side as she isolates herself and then struggles to break her own shell in order to connect with her emotions tied to a handsome man, Adam (played by Ryan Eggold). But once she discovers love, she has to fight to keep it.
The first half of the film is a story of recovery and haunting realizations, but just when everything seems to be going perfectly, it takes a turn. The writing is flawless as it catches the viewer offguard and sends them through a tunnel of darkness and despair as Sophia is sent on a journey of facing her own fears. The cinematography does a great job of supporting the story and not detracting from the plot. It stays tight on the actors for the majority of the film, with the motions remaining fluid and well thought out. The color scheme is reminiscent of another Mischa Barton film, “The Sixth Sense” , with its washed out tones and more vibrant reds, as most suspenseful films seem to be sticking to in the indie thriller/ horror genre.
One of the strongest parts of the film is the music. Jesse Voccia, who has multiple credits in the horror genre as well as several other well-known films, does an excellent job at pushing an ethereal feel over the entire film. The score floats along in the film, and just as the cinematography doesn’t detract, the music follows suit, but also adds emotion to the poignant moments and aides in the general beauty of the film. An airy, mostly electronic sounding score, it almost harkens back to the score of “Legend” or the 80’s fantasy films that truly create the atmosphere for the film.
The film plays out with twists and turns around every corner. While not all of them make sense, the main point of the story remains intact. The support of Sophia’s roommate Sam (Jaz Martin) and Adam’s roommate Astrid (Leah Pipes) only add to the tension and structure of the story. While their underlying plots don’t do much for the main plot, they do appear as realistic characters living their lives and intersecting with Sophia only in fragments.
Overall, this film is one definitely worth watching again and again. It is a beautiful adventure into what is believed to exist beyond death- one that will take the viewer along every step of the way.