Midsommar ★★★½

Films Of 2019, Ranked.

Ari Aster is for sure one of the most unique storytellers working in film today. I'd be really interested to see what could be done if he and Jordan Peele collaborated.

This is not your average horror film, nor was Hereditary. This film is quite the contrast from Aster's first run. taking place mostly in the bright sun light, making it feel even more unique for a horror film, showing you that what you fear isn't always lurking in the shadows but all around you in the sunshine. This does not give you the run of the mill jump scares (though I did jump once). This film exists to affect you longterm as it plays with your emotions as well as your morals. You'll leave the theater wondering what the hell it was you just experienced.

The film is outrageously beautiful, set against a backdrop of a Swedish meadowlands. The colors are vibrant and you could almost smell the floral breeze. Aster frames his shots so perfectly, I sometimes felt the actors were as small as ants against the large structures and forests around them.

This may be an unpopular opinion but I do believe I liked this better than Hereditary. Both deal with strong themes of grief, and both give us some shockingly vile imagery, but with Hereditary I felt bored at points, and some of the acting, with the exception of Toni Collette felt very fake to me. But with Midsommar I was fully entranced by the story as well as the performances. I was continuously intrigued and fascinated by this cult, if you can even call them that.

Florence Pugh's Dani is at the center of everything from the start. I really thought she was incredible. She had to be at an emotional 10 for almost the entirety of the film, she was not tasked with an easy part to play. She gave it her all and never faltered. Jack Reynor plays her distancing boyfriend Christian, who continuously fails at his want to be with her. It's a toxic relationship that is hard to watch, and develops the whole sort of metaphor or theme of the film; which in my opinion is reciprocation. Also 2019 is the year of male nudity on film and I'm really here for it! By the end it will have you wondering who may have been the hero and who may have been the villain, or if they can be interchangeable depending on the light you shine on certain situations.

I totally forgot that Will Poulter was in this, so seeing him was a nice surprise. Not only do I enjoy looking at him but I genuinely enjoy every performance I've seen him give, he's sort of a chameleon as I've never seen him be even a hint of the same character. And he definitely served as the comic relief that was needed.

Not all of your questions will be answered here, and it will definitely encourage a second watch to fully grasp, but this is for sure one uniquely upsetting horror film.

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