Hereditary Movie Review

Enter Hereditary, a film that strays from familiar horror landscapes and builds its suspense through what-ifs, possibilities of something bad happening--cue the threatening close-ups of every sharp object being used. Because when the film does go in for the kill, the “something bad” is far more sinister and unsettling than imaginable. The first 90 minutes are sustained by a dull throb of dread, interrupted only briefly by eruptions of the bizarre and surreal. The plot is centered on a grieving family haunted by tragedy and episodes of unexplainable phenomena. To elaborate further would take away from the movie-watching experience. Comparable to that of a Greek tragedy, Hereditary fixates on a domineering paralysis within the family. The family has no agency. This is reflected in the family’s growing awareness of their own mortality and inevitable end. Writer/director Ari Aster credits Rosemary’s Baby, In the Bedroom, and Don’t Look Now as major influences in both writing and directing. Toni Collette, Gabriel Byrne, Alex Wolff and Milly Shapiro star in the film.

 

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