'Them That Follow' Trailer: Snake Handler Horror Abounds In This Appalachian Gothic Drama

Them That Follow is a slow-burning blend of religious mania and body horror, featuring a phenomenal cast. Set in Appalachia, the story concerns a community of snake handlers that finds itself being torn apart due to unexpected circumstances, secrets and lies. Unbearable tension, shocking gore, and lots of scenes of snakes hissing, follow. Watch the Them That Follow trailer below.

Them That Follow Trailer 

I saw Them That Follow, from directors Britt Poulton and Dan Madison Savage, at this year's Sundance Film Festival, and came away impressed. The movie is a verrrrry slow-burn, so it might not be for everyone. But I loved its ominous atmosphere and overall tone. As I wrote in my review:

As Them That Follow unfolds, it's easy to think of it as a great American gothic novel that was never actually written. The narrative feels overtly literary, as do the characters themselves. That's not to say Poulton and Madison haven't conjured up something cinematic. The directorial duo load the film with excruciatingly tense moments highlighted by quick cuts, haunting music courtesy of Garth Stevenson, and atmospheric cinematography from Brett Jutkiewicz. As the movie progresses, it also dips into full-blown body-horror territory, with hideous snake bites, gory self-mutilation, and a last-minute surgical procedure performed by a clearly unsterile tree saw. The filmmakers don't flinch away from any of this, and while Them That Follow can't be considered a horror movie, it's often plenty horrific.

The cast ain't half bad, either. Recent Academy Award Winner Olivia Colman has a supporting role unlike anything she's done before; Kaitlyn Dever, fresh off her breakout in Booksmart, is the lead character (even though she doesn't appeared to be billed that way here); and the always-welcomed Walton Goggins is there too, Goggins-ing it up. Here's the synopsis:

Deep in Appalachia, Pastor Lemuel Childs (Walton Goggins) presides over an isolated community of serpent handlers, an obscure sect of Pentecostals who willingly take up venomous snakes to prove themselves before God. As his devoted daughter, Mara (Alice Englert) prepares for her wedding day, under the watchful eye of Hope Slaughter (Academy Award Winner Olivia Colman), a dangerous secret is unearthed and she is forced to confront the deadly tradition of her father's church. Also starring Kaitlyn Dever, Jim Gaffigan, Thomas Mann, and Lewis Pullman.

Them That Follow slithers into theaters August 2, 2019. Dig the gorgeous poster below.