Dir- Ari Aster
The death of a loved one is commonly employed in many horror movies to add tension to an event or to set up a premise that factors into the story and Ari Aster's Hereditary is undoubtedly the latter. Annie (Toni Collette) is mourning the death of her mother with whom she had a problematic relationship, her husband is supportive, but their marriage appears strained. Her children include the moody teenager son Peter and her talented but reclusive daughter Charlie who had the closest bond to the deceased. Annie has lived a difficult life with some family tragedies and will soon face another that will set in motion the events that will tear apart her family and put her sanity on edge. Hereditary is a slow burn kind of film that presents an uncomfortable situation for the family and throws in some shocking scenes and unsettling moments of terror. The young daughter Charlie (Milly Shapiro) stands out with her odd habits such as her tongue clicking as well as the creative but strange toys she makes. It is her bizarre behavior that helps carry the film, and she makes quite an impact when she is on screen. Mr. Aster does an excellent job with the setting of the film, and Annie's detailed house models do look impressive especially in the way they add to her characters difficulty in dealing with the stresses she encounters. Despite the stellar cast, the movie may not appeal to many who may be expecting a film filled with wall to wall scares and frights, the movie does have those but mostly toward the latter half of the film and as mentioned earlier the slow burn style may not appeal to some viewers. Hereditary is a terrifying movie, but I felt that calling it one of the scariest movies of all time was somewhat opinionated as what scares an audience depends on what that the viewer is most terrified by the most.