Midsommar ★★★★½

Ari Aster is an absolute genius and that is all I have to say for now. Much to think about.

You know a film is special when you cannot stop thinking about it. Now that I’ve had time to process this insane masterpiece, here are my further thoughts.

First of all, Midsommar is absolutely gorgeous. The cinematography and colorful visuals are breathtaking, and the fact that a horror movie is able to take place in complete daylight is both unique and very impressive. This is one of the most obvious ways in which Aster’s sophomore feature distinguishes itself from the dark Hereditary. It works so well and makes for a visually stunning film that is truly a pleasure to watch. The costume and set design also play beautifully into the flowery paradigm, though the themes of the film are far from light.

Midsommar is twisted and disturbing in the most delightful ways. Perhaps it isn’t even so shocking as it is morbidly satisfying. And I loved it. Aster proves again to be a master (rhyme intended) of meticulous exposition, as he manages to gradually build horror into an wholly gut-wrenching experience even as he challenges traditional elements of the genre. The effect is subtle at first, and then completely inundating.

Midsommar is also incredibly immersive. Though I felt like some parts in the first half dragged a bit, by the end of the film I could have sat and watched for another several hours; I felt like I was there. The runtime, however long, is well justified. It really is an experience to behold and I am just so glad to have gotten to see it on the big screen.

I feel like I could go on about this forever, so I will just sum up by saying that Midsommar is the film of the summer. Of the year, probably. Consisting of unforgettable visuals—both beautiful and grotesque—, excellent acting, brilliant writing and directing, and a story that will leave you feeling unsettled in several ways, Midsommar is an incredible achievement of cinema that is sure to become a classic. I already can’t wait to see it again.

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