DonnyB’s review published on Letterboxd:
A well-crafted, dark story with a fantastic score. It is a good movie - but I have the same complaints with most horrors of the last 2-3 years. 2018 had some amazing horror films but since then they seem to be very stylish with great cinematography and decent acting. The issue is that most have been way too safe and are artistic or respectable enough to be considered 'good' but they don't do anything scary. I'm not asking for jump scares or insanity, just stop making dramas with some horror elements added. Some are good, but when they all feel the same way I'm starting to get burnt out on them. I'd rather see someone piss their pants rather than cry in scary movies. I really hope this trend doesn't continue into the 20s. And since this movie came out in 2019, please god let this be the last movie with crackling bone sound effects. It's been so overdone by dozens of movies and this has to be one of the worst offenders. Leave that stuff in the 2010s. Maybe the pandemic put a lot of horror on hold but I've been waiting for the next great horror movie for a while now. The Vigil is a nice movie with some creepy moments but I just didn't really enjoy it. I wouldn't argue with anyone that gives this an 8/10 but my enjoyment was much lower than that. I do have to give extra points for the excellent score though, that really saved this one.
I think James Wan had a bigger impact on horror than we all anticipated. The late 2000s jump scare ghost stories created a wave until people complained about those. Then came the Conjuring wave where people wanted something more story driven, old school or even period pieces of horror/drama. Without James Wan around things have gotten boring as hell (and no I don't think Wan is even close to one of the great horror directors). The blumhouse joints are kind of fun but I feel like we've been lacking in great horror for a few years. Get Out was incredible but not terrifying. Mandy, Climax, Suspiria, etc are fantastic but not horrorific either and now I'm worried that nothing as good as Hereditary can even be made at this point. Who will save the genre?