Ben Mehlman’s review published on Letterboxd:
Ari Aster's commitment to the story he wants to tell is admirable and there are parts of this movie that I will remember for a very long time. Unfortunately the story and underlying metaphor doesn't fully connect for me. There is a lot about this movie I enjoyed, the first act, especially Ari's directing solidified that this is one of the most interesting filmmakers working today. The upside down shot of the car was mesmerizing. Florence Pugh is a force to be reckoned with, displaying layers upon layers of emotional depth. And Jack Reynor, one of the most underrated actors today, turns in a performance that earns him a spot on the Mount Rushmore of shithead boyfriends.
I'm quite happy that Aster tried to do something different from his previous outing, I just wish he had a few more months to punch up the script. This movie was rushed into production and it shows. The exploration of co-dependency, grief and unhealthy relationships is set up but not interwoven into the back part of the story as much as it could have been. Honestly once we get to the commune, all suspense went out the window. It probably didn't help that I watched the first half of GET OUT (a masterclass in keeping someone logically in a dangerous location without undermining their, or the audience's, intelligence) the day I watched this because it really highlighted for me there is no good reason for these people to stay once people start dying. In its attempt to subvert horror tropes it falls into B-Movie logic of, they're staying because... the story needs them to. Ironically just like Peele's seconding outing US, MIDSOMMAR has a lot to say under the surface but doesn't make it work as much above the surface. And unfortunately this disconnect undercuts the very interesting things this movie explores.
Maybe this film will grow with additional viewings but for me it's just a good movie that had potential to be truly great.