I’ll start this off with a warning. If you’re a mainstream horror fan, you will not like this. It is not The Conjuring, it does not have jump scares, it is a slow movie. It’s not scary in the way that most horror films are scary. It doesn’t frighten you. It felt traumatic. This is an artsy movie for sure. If you don’t like that, don’t see it.
Florence Pugh is absolutely phenomenal. She provides the heart for the film and is what keeps the audience emotionally invensted in such a disturbing film. It’s one of the greatest horror performances that I have ever seen.
The cinematography is stunningly gorgeous. I’ve never seen a film look so gory and grotesque and yet absolutely beatiful at the same time. It’s some of the best cinematography that I’ve seen in years. The art direction is also phenomenal in providing us with a floral, candy colored, nightmare world.
And Ari Aster’s screenplay and direction is what makes this so special and separates it from other horror pieces. It’s slow, methodical, eerie. But the characters are psychological and deep. The dialogue is real and colorful. The plot is surreal and disturbing. He let’s the scares crawl at you as opposed to jump at you. He allows you to see what will happen, process it, feel the shock of what’s about to happen, and then still shock you even more when it happens.
This film will be divisive. I have no doubt that many people here will hate this. However, while this is a challenging film, it’s also a great film. Halfway through a character says something along the lines of “That was so messed up, but I’m trying to keep an open mind.” I suggest that audiences take this advice.
PSA, this movie is extremely violent, bloody, and gory. It’s pretty horrifying and it could have stuff that is triggering.
Review by Icecreambenjaminelliott