We Made The Terror Real By Watching IT COMES AT NIGHT In The Woods

A24's latest heart-stopper got a hell of a screening last night.

All photos by HLK

Last night I was privileged to host a one-of-a-kind screening of It Comes At Night, the harrowing new film from Krisha's Trey Edward Shults (read my review here). Alamo Drafthouse teamed up with A24 to show It Comes At Night in the most terrifying way possible: in the middle of the remote woods, with gas masks and red lanterns and a red door pulled directly from the film/your nightmares. 

Attendees met at Alamo Drafthouse Mueller, where after checking in and much anticipation, guides in gas masks and survival wear ordered us to take a bottle of water, cover our faces with surgical masks and enter a line of schoolbuses ready to take us to an undisclosed location. 

The buses drove us about half an hour out of town. The roads very quickly turned dark and narrow, and the buses were quiet. Soon we were driving through the woods, with tree branches whipping against the windows and no other cars in sight. Once we arrived, our guides used their lamps to shepherd us down a dark and dirty road surrounded by run-down structures and caution tape. We were instructed not to communicate with any drifters we saw, or to approach any animals. Suddenly, in the middle of the woods, we came upon a red door. 

As we walked through the red door, we found the Rolling Roadshow screen and lines of chairs bathed in red light and the glow from nearby firepits. The screening area was completely circled by impenetrable woods and darkness. This is where two hundred people would first watch It Comes At Night

It really was an unsettling experience, watching this devastating film in such a dramatic setting. The audience was completely silent and riveted the entire time. Afterward, I moderated a Q&A with writer/director Trey Edward Shults, and Shults talked about his film in a revealing and insightful way, leaving plenty of ambiguity for the audience while speaking plainly about what inspired him to tell such a bleak, chilling story. 

Thanks to A24, to Shults and to the Alamo Drafthouse for making such a remarkable experience possible. It Comes At Night hits theaters June 9th. Be ready. 

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