Eppler: You might not be ready for "Midsommar"
With "Midsommer," Ari Aster proves his first movie, "Hereditary," was no fluke. FOX34's James Eppler has the review.
You might not be ready for "Midsommar," a beautiful living nightmare of a movie and the work of a young filmmaker who's proving to have a unique vision.
Is it scary? Well, here's the thing: any schlockmeister can make a jump-out-and-scare you movie, but writer and director Ari Aster is a true craftsman who can slowly build dread and tension to a stomach-turning fever pitch with images sure to revisit you.
Florence Pugh stars as a grieving woman who goes to Sweden for a summer vacation with her jerky boyfriend (Jack Reynor) and his buddies to visit a colony for a festival. Despite appearances, we know from watching movies something must be amiss - that this is clearly a cult - but the temperature gets turned up so gradually that it's too late to escape when it comes to a boil.
Aster gives us so much to see on the screen (just keep an eye on the artwork in the background for clues) and his script is fantastic - rich in characterization to make us care and fascinating in its examination of traditions, ceremony, ritual and the occult. It's a deeply unnerving picture.
With "Midsommer," Aster proves his first movie, "Hereditary," was no fluke. He appears to be the real deal.
EPPLER'S RATING: * * * * 1/2
* * * * * Incredible - One of the best of the year
* * * * Excellent - Touches greatness with only minor quibbles
* * * Good - Plenty to like, definitely worth seeing
* * Mediocre - You can do better
* Awful - The worst, an insult to movies