Midsommar ★★★★

“so we’re just gonna ignore the bear?”

i understand why some are frustrated with aster's very self-satisfied, "elevated" approach to horror but his ability to pummel his audience with a sickening sense of unrelenting dread leading to unavoidable violence is something that impresses and excites me: i was completely on board with all 140 minutes of this (even if it admittedly is not as tight narratively as Hereditary) and even more impressed that it manages to be just as deliriously funny as it is uncomfortable. there are sections I wish related or added to the central character conflict with a little more emphasis but even when this movie isn't directly confronting the collapse of a toxic relationship, its confident presentation of a quietly unsettling cult movie is respectably engrossing on its own. and aster also manages to have his cake and eat it too with an ending that's as instinctually emotionally cathartic as it is plainly morally dubious and situationally thorny. pugh and poulter mvps.

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