A priest with a haunted past and a novice on the threshold of her final vows are sent by the Vatican to investigate the death of a young nun in Romania and confront a malevolent force in the form of a demonic nun.
With Hereditary, Ari Aster wanted to "make a film about suffering that took suffering seriously". See more »
(at around 45 mins) In the opening graphic of Ellen's obituary, her death is noted as taking place in early April. When Annie meets Joan, Joan says a few months have passed. Then we are shown the Seance flyer with a date of April 18. See more »
This is a bit of an old fashioned horror movie. Something that plays as a dramatic movie first and then slowly becomes something else. Like "Rosemary" or "Exorcist" but without the high profile clout of those directors. This is two hours of an exploration of family tragedy and grief through characters struggling to cope.
To say much of this film is to ruin it, so lashing praise onto certain aspects of it is the best one can do. Not to say this is a film with a big twist, it isn't. Toni Collette is fantastic as is no surprise at this point in her career. All the performances carry their own, including one I was unsure of at first but grew on me throughout -- Alex Wolff. The cinematography, rhythms and pacing, sense of place and space, and sound design are all superb and work in conjunction to create atmosphere and dread -- like a pit in your stomach that continues to grow and grow throughout.
It turns into a genuine nightmare that absolutely worked for me. See it blind, see it as a movie first and foremost (not as a horror show with jump scares), but just see it.
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