Fantastic Fest 2015: Follow

Owen Egerton's claustrophobic horror debut

Follow is the directorial debut of Owen Egerton, local literary polymath whose creature tentacles stretch from the Drafthouse stage as a member of Master Pancake Theater to the shelves of BookPeople where you can find his stellar short story collection, How Best to Avoid Dying.

Follow (Photo Courtesy of Owen Egerton)

His wit and fierce creativity are on full display in Follow, a tightly woven horror flick about a typical Austin “artist” who accidentally kills his girlfriend, then makes some terrible decisions about what to do with the body.

It's one of those films where the plot spirals downward with a series of seat-squirming decisions, made with just enough believability to keep the audience onboard as the hole is dug deeper and deeper. Quinn, played by Noah Segan as the type of slacker you might find at the White Horse at 2am, does an admirable job of selling his character's descent. The transition from victim of circumstance to ruthless revenge-seeker is surprisingly smooth, a testament to both the polished script and Egerton's steady directorial hand.

Visually, you'd be hard-pressed to tell that this is a film from a first-time director. There's a patience to the camerawork that heightens the tension and amplifies the few sparks of violent action, resulting in some genuinely big scares. Egerton's job as director is aided by pitch-perfect set design, which is crucial since most of the film takes place in Quinn's dingy bungalow, an authentic re-creation of post-college living, right down to the crappy kitchen counters, frameless bed, and a dusty basement art studio turned prison.

Adding up all these elements, it's hard to call Follow anything but a success. The only real problem is that the claustrophobic nature of the project and the 74 minute runtime have the side effect of making the film seem small and somewhat forgettable. It feels much more like a short story than a novel, a skillful exploration of a clever idea that doesn't leave a lasting impression, but does make viewers want more. Knowing Egerton's prolific nature, they won't need to wait long. For an interview with Egerton, see "Following the Fantastic Owen Egerton," Sept. 25.

Follow screens again Monday, Sept. 28, 8:15pm.

For more Fantastic Fest news, reviews, and interviews, follow all our updates at

More Fantastic Fest 2015
Richard Jenkins Wields a <i>Bone Tomahawk</i>
Richard Jenkins Wields a Bone Tomahawk
Old Western horror with the Six Feet Under star

Richard Whittaker, Oct. 23, 2015

Fantastic Fest 2015: <i>The Devil's Candy</i>
Fantastic Fest 2015: The Devil's Candy
Heavy metal against Satan in Austin-filmed horror

Richard Whittaker, Oct. 7, 2015

More by Dan Gentile
The Best Music We Saw at SXSW on Thursday
The Best Music We Saw at SXSW on Thursday
Young Thug in the park, icy French experimentalism, and more

March 18, 2022

The Best Music We Saw at SXSW on Wednesday
The Best Music We Saw at SXSW on Wednesday
The buzzy, the brave, the thrash-able twee-pop

March 17, 2022


Fantastic Fest 2015, Follow, Owen Egerton

One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

Eric Goodman's Austin FC column, other soccer news

Behind the scenes at The Austin Chronicle

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle