Hereditary (2018) Poster


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Seen it twice and I now got it - a brilliant movie
roylegato13 July 2018
Warning: Spoilers
When I saw the movie for the first time, my reaction at the end was the same as the whole audiences. WTF??? I was mainly disappointed and felt like I was wasting time and money. The movie left scars behind and I couldn't stay alone at home being that scarred for many days - which was kind of a good sign as I hardly get scarred watching horror movies nowadays (I am nearly 47 and grew up with all horror classics... I've "seen them all..."). As said, I was super angry having watched this movie. Yesterday, I went to the cinema with my 20 year old son as he wanted to see the movie with me. As loving father I agreed. This time I figured out what is truly going on in the movie!

Caution - Spoiler !!: The dear grandmom was a satanist. I knew that from the first time. Joanne, her "girlfriend" as well. I also got that one. But what was the electric impulse which you could see? This i figured out the second time. It was Paimon, the demon haunting the son of Annie. But Paimon needed the son to be dead first to be able to enter his body for good - which happenes just at the end of the movie when Peter jumpes out of the window. You can see Peter lying on the ground in front of the house when the electric impulse comes and enters Peters body. That was Paimon. Now Paimon has entered Peters body finally. The summoning was successful. And finally - Peter (now Paimon) makes that strange sound with his tongue, just like Charlie did before. Why? Charlie was the host of Paimon before. But her body was not healthy and it was a girls body, not the body of a man, which Paimon needed. Thats why Charlies grandmother wanted to her to be a boy instead of being a girl. Makes sense now? And btw: Paimon is a real figure as well as the sign used in this film. It is one of the 72 demons from the Grimoire - some magic book also used by people like Aleister Crowley. Knowing that, the film has now become a real masterpiece. The tension increases constantly till the showdown at the end, when the movie suddenly becomes one of the most fearing horror movies I have ever seen. Well done A24 and Ari Aster! Great acting from the cast as well!
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Acting was amazing, ending left me feeling robbed.
momontherandom8 June 2018
Warning: Spoilers
The acting in this movie was by far its redeeming trait. There was so much creepiness to go around and Toni Collette owned her role. I felt extremely uncomfortable at a couple points and almost regretted going to the theater alone.

That all changed with the last 10 minutes. The movie is a little over two hours, so that's a long emotional investment. But then you get to the "twist" and it starts to get hokey and lame. The spookiness up until that point had now turned into what felt like a last ditch effort for an end to the movie. At one point in the movie, my mouth was hanging open in shock and horror, when the end credits started rolling, my mouth was hanging open in disappointment. If you want to love the movie, leave 15 minutes before it's over and just make up an ending in your mind. You'll feel much more satisfied.
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I never want to see this film again
sportsmonkey10209 June 2018
And I mean this in the best way possible. The spectrum of emotions you go through range from sheer terror to complete hopelessness and sorrow. The movie picks at the human psyche in all the right ways. It's both hard to watch and impossible to look away. Hands down the best horror films I've ever seen, perhaps one of the best films in general.
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Showcases what horror is capable of when taken seriously
ccamp899 June 2018
In many ways, Hereditary is the horror movie I've been restlessly waiting to see for so many years. Despite my avid fandom for the genre, I really feel that modern horror has lost its grasp on how to make a film that's truly unsettling in the way the great classic horror films are. A modern wide-release horror film is often nothing more than a conveyor belt of jump scares strung together with a derivative story which exists purely as a vehicle to deliver those jump scares. They're more carnival rides than they are films, and audiences have been conditioned to view and judge them through that lens. The modern horror fan goes to their local theater and parts with their money on the expectation that their selected horror film will "deliver the goods", so to speak: startle them a sufficient number of times (scaling appropriately with the film's runtime, of course) and give them the money shots (blood, gore, graphic murders, well-lit and up-close views of the applicable CGI monster etc.) If a horror movie fails to deliver those goods, it's scoffed at and falls into the "worst film I've ever seen" category. I put that in quotes because a disgruntled filmgoer behind me broadcasted those exact words across the theater as the credits for this film rolled. He really wanted us to know his thoughts.

Like similarly fantastic and crowd-displeasing horror films of the past few years, The Witch and It Comes At Night, Hereditary is a film that largely deals in atmosphere and emotional horror. The Shining, which happens to be my favorite horror film, is a clear touchstone and I would go as far as saying that this is the first modern horror film I've seen that genuinely captures a similar tone and ethos. Much like that film, it delivers its horror through an intensifying sense of unease and dread that becomes nearly suffocating by its conclusion. Rather than startling you with cheap scares, it offers haunting and upsetting images which are often delivered without any of those overused sonic jolts. Perhaps most importantly, it anchors everything in an emotional core with nuanced characters who experience relatable family struggles and grief. And that is absolutely critical to what makes the movie effective and resonant: it works on a metaphorical level, using the supernatural story as a vehicle to explore the very real way in which a family can be absolutely ravaged by tragedy, and furthermore how trauma and mental illness are passed through the generations. I'd be remiss not to mention that Toni Collette gives a mesmerizing performance in this film that is absolutely unhinged and truly difficult to stomach at times.

For all that praise and as excellent as I think it is, Hereditary isn't quite a masterpiece. Despite the fact that I was very much invested and riveted throughout the length of the film, there were some detectable pacing issues. I feel conflicted in saying that because I'm very much a fan of the slow-burn horror style which benefits from a deliberate pace, but I did get the occasional nagging sense that things could've been tightened up just a tad without losing the effect. Some of the scares in the film, often the more "traditional" horror moments, also struck slightly the wrong note with me on a first viewing and were just a hair too campy or on-the-nose given how visionary and restrained the majority of the film is. And in its ending few minutes, the film really shows its full hand when a bit more ambiguity may have served it better.

The positives far, far outweigh the negatives here though and Hereditary is ultimately a remarkable debut horror film which showcases what the genre is capable of when it's taken seriously by a talented director. Here's hoping we'll continue to see more like it.

Light 4.5/5
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A genuine nightmare
spencergrande630 April 2018
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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Great slow burn uncomfortable horror
mills7131 August 2018
Loved this movie, it wasn't hard to figure out once it peaked .. but getting there was great. I see people don't like this film and I can understand that. But it reminded me of Rosemary's Baby and that's saying a lot. As the story unfolds you see how truly horrifying this persons (Toni Collette) life has been.. the performances are spot on. This movie really ramps up in the last twenty minutes.. it's not fir everyone but it creeped me out and I watch a lot of horror. Give it a shot .. it's well worth it.
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Overhyped, Overlong, Underachieving, Underhanded Nonsense
bnitcamela10 June 2018
Warning: Spoilers
This film is not credible, not scary, and not recommended unless you're bored and streaming it at home. Do not waste your money or risk an accident where you or a family member might be decapitated while traveling to or from a theater.

Seriously though, this is a clear case of the hype machine being cynically manipulated to drive box office performance but an utterly forgettable movie.

Stay with me here - I know I haven't even made a single specific complaint about the film, and I will - but Ari Aster can't seem to resist these endings that even MNS might be ashamed of. It kind of worked with "The VVitch" in 2015, but this time it's just too-much-nonsense-icing on top of an already unbelievable cake that failed to rise.

OK enough of the metaphors. The positives: This film is very nicely shot. The lighting is perfect and for about 15 minutes the director does a good job of ratcheting up a somewhat believable tension. The cinematography is great. The acting is just OK in the aggregate - Collette is very good, but I don't even see why Gabriel Byrne signed up for this. The kids have the difficult job of making otherwise ridiculous and totally unbelievable scenarios and behaviors seem as though they might be possible.

Now to the negatives (SPOILERS AHEAD): People simply do not behave in the ways that are depicted in this movie.

You don't send a 10 year old (I know she was 13 or 14 during filming, but she doesn't look it at all) to a high school party with a senior. A high school senior who plans on smoking some dube doesn't take his 10 year old sister along at his mom's bizarre request without an argument. Further, you don't do that - even if you're grieving-but-not-grieving over your recently departed mother - when the girl suffers from a severe nut allergy and you don't do it without sending an Epi Pen along with your son.

People who just decapitated their sibling in an auto accident don't simply drive home, go to bed, and leave a human head on the ground (much less your own sister's) then wait for their parents to discover the headless body in one of the family's two Volvos the next morning - presumably after bleeding out in the back seat. Additionally, when this kind of thing happens, the cops tend to get involved, amirite? In this movie, however, that's exactly what happens and no police, no cleanup and they're driving the car in the very next scene. Hmmm...

When your son, who has weeks or days earlier killed your daughter, resumes going to school almost immediately, without therapy or counseling, has a seizure and bashes his own face in on the desk, you don't load his lifeless body into the same Volvo, drive him home, and deposit him into his bed - still unconscious - without any kind of medical consultation or observation at all. Laughably ridiculous.

The reaction of the family to the mother's dalliances into the world of seances and such is just not believable. I don't know how else to say it.

And the problem with all of the above is that what little plot there is absolutely requires the audience to suspend disbelief in the very essence of human nature and behavior and accept without any question that these kinds of things are likely or possible.

In addition, the whole convoluted idea is just ridiculous and unnecessary. So the evil, manipulative matriarch wanted to get a suitable male host for her demon lover, but in the process screws up several attempts over a generation, and puts him into a little girl's body instead - meaning that she has to be killed and then he can possess the boy. OMG..SMH...WOW

Finally there's the underlying conceit to the way the whole picture was made. When you have to rely on an unnerving soundtrack to create a mood in a movie like this, you're not doing it right. In any case, it didn't work. At no point was anyone in the audience frightened or unnerved and I heard several laughs and scoffs during moments that apparently were supposed to be scary or meaningful.

I suppose I should have seen this sophistry coming when, prior to the movie, the theater showed an interview with the director who made the ridiculous claim that he views "The Shining" as a comedy movie - and that's it's more effective as such than it is a horror movie. The guy is clearly delusional and making movies only for himself and his industry/film school buddies.

Avoid. I'm not kidding - wait for it to hit Netflix. There are better ways to spend 2 hours.
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A Hellish Nightmare
MichaelG-189-2126051 June 2018
Hereditary is a refreshing example of a studio subverting expectations, as the trailer is purposely misleading (in a good way). Even as the film ventures into territory familiar to its genre, writer/director Ari Aster skillfully ratchets the tension into something that feels like a nightmare straight from hell.

Hereditary conjures multiple indelibly brutal moments of pure horror - the likes of which made many in my audience giggle in anxiety. Aster truly seems to get as much tension as possible from each scene. The film's direction, writing, cinematography, production design, and score are all some of the best the horror genre has seen. It's a beautiful thing to see a film crafted so keenly.

As for the cast, the highlights are an excellent performance by Toni Collette and a strong Alex Wolff. What begins as a drama about a family tearing apart with grief, descends into madness and the supernatural.

Hereditary doesn't redefine horror. It puts a wicked stamp of its own on the tropes of the genre. The film is a tremendous success, and a truly impressive feature-debut from Ari Aster. Horror doesn't get any better than this.
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Best horror of the past decade
ryancoath25 June 2018
Disturbing and original. Plays on themes of family drama, mental disorders, and the supernatural. Opinions are polarizing for this movie but I urge you to see this. Acting was very good.

A slow burn that doesn't rely on cheap jump scares. Deserves a place along side the best.
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Almost works better as a drama than a horror
jtindahouse7 June 2018
'Hereditary' is sort of like two films in one. Half of the time it is being what I expected it to be, which is a horror movie. The other half though it plays out much like a drama. I would even suggest it's a better film when it's in drama mode than it is when it's in horror mode. The film is over 2 hours in length which is extremely long by modern horror movie standards. The reason I believe for this is that it's trying to fit so much in and achieve so much in such a little time. It's a very ambitious film it would have to be said.

The entire cast were terrific, but Toni Collette absolutely blew me away. The emotional depth she is able to achieve never ceases to amaze me and she is captivating to watch in any scene she's in. I feel like she is one of the most under-appreciated actresses working today. As mentioned though, everyone is terrific and this is one of the best acted horror movies you are likely to find.

I sat in the cinema for a couple of minutes are the credits rolled just trying to work out how I actually felt about the film. I know I liked it, but I also know I didn't love it as much as I had hoped to going in. It certainly surprised me that I was more invested in the real-life drama side of things, and that the horror was almost like an unwanted distraction at times. The horror is almost always about atmosphere and visuals rather than any kind of jump-scare which I always like. What I didn't like though was how casually it jumped from seeming normality to outright suspension of belief. I feel like this could have been bridged a little better. Early on there's a lot of subtlety, then in one scene all of that is thrown out the window at once. I suppose at least the audience knows where they stand from that point onwards.

'Hereditary' is a film made with impeccable quality, of that there is no questioning. In fact it's made so well that I would suggest what story you picked to tell almost wouldn't matter because writer/director Ari Aster clearly has the skills to make it work. I can see opinions being very divided on the film (I even had a couple walk out of the cinema at one point in my showing), but I think the majority will like it on some level and for that reason I would recommend giving it a look.
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Stunning build up, disappointing climax
Ghenboi22 October 2018
Everything from the casts acting to the grim color palette, filming angles that were shown in the movie were absolutely top notch, if not one of the best of year.

And just like every other reviews before me, the ending was a rather odd. Why did he do that? What will happens afterward? Why and how are the questions that will linger in your mind for couple days and still send chills down your spines whenever you think about it.
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A new horror classic, tense and terrifying
akwsixers1010 June 2018
I rarely write reviews for films on here with the exception of two cases: when a movie is really bad or when a movie needs defending from a vocal minority that trash it. First, I'll review the film like I would any other and then I'm going to try and reason why audiences are reacting negatively to the film. I'm not sure if Hereditary is the greatest horror film ever but I certainly felt like I was watching my generation's Exorcist or Rosemary's Baby. The movie borrows heavily from those two films right down to the final scene. Despite this, it feels new and dangerous. I had no idea how the movie was going to play out which is a criticism I have with a lot modern horror/thriller movies. This in large part has to do with the marketing campaign but more on that later. I feel the term slow burn has a negative connotation associated with it and prefer to call this movie tense. It doesn't really on jump scares that plague a lot of modern horror and chooses tension and imagery to scare the audience with slow camera panning and fantastic cinematography, a nervous score, and great performances. Toni Collette gives and incredible performance as a manic mother who is mourning the loss of a parent. The supporting cast is fantastic as well and they all have a time to shine at some point in the movie. The movie is also challenging in its themes with relationships between parents and their children always in the forefront. The human drama of this movie far exceeded my expectations and is worthy viewing in its own right.

To try and explain why audiences are trashing the film through some mediums (not as much on IMDb, see CinemaScore, Rotten Tomatoes for example) I think it is important to understand that we live in an impatient culture. Many horror classics of the past like the two I mention earlier weren't fast paced and instead lingered on images and favored slow paced horror. I think the modern horror audience can get restless when presented with a movie like this. I don't think Rosemary's Baby or the Exorcist would review very well with broad audiences if they were released today. Secondly, I think the film has succeeded in making people uncomfortable by questioning parent's feelings for their children and how they are displayed. This movie is complex and has a lot to say. Comparing this film to another fantastic horror movie from this year, A Quiet Place, offers a great juxtaposition of this idea. One is very simple in it's premise that quickly gets to the scares while the other takes it's time to build to a climax that may or may not be worth the wait depending on the viewer. Overall, Hereditary offers plenty of horrific imagery and supernatural scares that work as a deeper examination of familial relationships rather than being a string a horror movie cliches.

9/10 - excellent
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A gripping, unconventional and an unsettling movie, Hereditary is ome of the best horror movies I've seen so far this decade.
umarsonic30 August 2018
I don't know why I decided to watch this gem at 3 in the morning. This is one of the best horror movies so far this decade, it doesn't rely on jumpscares or loud noises like most horror films its more of an unconventional masterpiece. I loved the tension created in this movie and the editing choices were phenomenal and actually unsettled me alot. The acting in this movie is superb especially by the females in particular Toni Collette who actually in my opinion gives the best female performance of the year. The film does not feel claustrophobic but it does feel contained in these particular locations which adds to the horror of this movie. This is Ari Aster's first feature lenght movie as a director and now he's on my radar I can't wait to see what he does next because he has crafted this movie to almost perfection. The ending has to be the best but also the most unnerving endings I've seen. The only flaw I can think of is the exposition which I get it that in such movies characters have to speak out the exposition but I felt this movie would've been better with less vocal exposition like The Shining. In the end, Hereditary is a very gripping, unnerving and unconventional horror film the best infact since The Babadook, it combines the elements of art house and horror very well and its a must watch for all horror fans but viewer discretion is advised because of it's disturbing nature. I give it an "A+" and "9.5/10".
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Disappointment has a new name.
doe-334919 June 2018
Warning: Spoilers
When I was a kid, my parents often discussed a movie that they had seen when they first started dating: The Bird with the Crystal Plumage. People had been talking about how amazing the film was and when they went, they sat there confused and upset in the theater. For years, any time they rated a movie as boring, too strange or overly hyped, they would reference Argento's film. I always wondered if it upsets them that I grew up loving horror and giallo films so much.

One day, I explained what I thought that movie was about to my parents. There's gender reversal, as well as being a foreigner and the isolation of modern life, filtered through the lens of an auteur. Maybe it didn't all make sense to him, but I think my explanation made them get a little more of why I liked it so much.

My wife and I are planning on having kids some day. If one of them ever sits me down and explains why this movie is good to me, I'm going to disown them.

If you thought movies like The Witch moved slowly, the glacial pace of this film makes that film seem like a slam-bang Honk Kong action pic. It takes forever to decide on what the movie is even about, smashing our expectations and killing off a major character - again, let me reinforce that spoiler warning - when Charlie goes to a party, has an allergic reaction and is beheaded while her brother races to get her to the hospital.

That was the one true surprise of the film, one that made me think that it was getting ready to gear up and deliver on its promise to be the scariest movie of our generation.

Look - I'm not going to deny the talent of the people involved in the film. Toni Collette is an amazing actress and she imbues the mother of this film with true emotion. It's as if her parts of this film seem to be a drama about dealing with loss and never truly understanding our parents and the gnarled roots of our family tree.

While I was watching this film, a man snored loudly to my left and I wondered what magical dreams that he was having and how I could experience them instead of what was on the screen. I was jealous of the fact that his girlfriend allowed him the pleasures of dreamland while my wife continually poked me in the ribs to keep me awake during the slow opening of this film that then ground its gears to move even slower.

Let's be perfectly frank. I hated this movie. It doesn't matter to me how many people love it or proclaim it as high art or say that it's the scariest movie they've seen and how much it haunts them. That's great - I'm happy that they had such a reaction to it. My reaction differs and I'm willing to sit down and ponder for nearly three times the length of this film exactly what I have to say about it. And that, I guess, is something of a success for this movie. Films should make you think and consider and examine. And this movie certainly did that. It also made me wonder exactly what I'd chose to watch when I got home to exorcise its stink from consciousness.

This movie is style over substance, an effort that tries to tell a story that has no character to root for or care about. We have no idea what they are battling against so we have no way to figure out how they can avoid the outcome. I feel like I wasted money on this film, which is rough yet I can get it back, but I also wasted so much time caring about it and watching it, which is something that I can never get back. It needs an editor that could have trimmed its various narratives into a better collective whole. It's like steak on steak on steak, covered with 19 kinds of steak sauce, all eaten slowly through a straw after someone else has methodically chewed it for you. And after all that, it tastes like offal.
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Unlike mother! (2017), Hereditary uses allegory to its advantage and is genuinely terrifying.
Hereditary feels like it was conceived as a response to horror films like the Paranormal Activity films, in that horror films have never been jump-scare dependent fests; and that they can be scary in how uneasy they make you feel as you watch the story unfold on-screen. I could see influences of The Omen, The Exorcist, and mother! (for better or worse). It's got its fair-share of uneasy scares and subtle beat-driven scares and shocks.

I can see why some people didn't take too kindly to this movie, and that's fine. My thoughts on the matter though: this film succeeds in telling a story bigger and scarier than any jump-scare fest. Hereditary is a must-see horror movie. And it's a must-see for the 2010s.
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Give me 2hrs 7mins of my life back!
timanglish18 June 2018
Warning: Spoilers
I hated this movie Everyone else in my screening hated this movie Everyone I know who has seen it hated this movie How it's IMDB score is as high as it is I don't know! This is my first review on IMDB and I felt compelled to write it to warn people because it was so bad Half an hour in, it was so slow I was battling to stay awake I didn't particularly care for any of the characters As Toni Collette descended into madness I found her highly irritating I only made it to the end because I had gone to see it with people - if i'd of been on my own i'd of walked out at the point I referred to IMDB to see how long it was and saw it was 2hrs 7mins!

If it was knocked down to about 80mins it would probably be an okay-ish movie but it was more like torture having to sit through it for what seemed like forever!
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Rewards concentration
Bertaut23 June 2018
Warning: Spoilers
Hereditary is writer/director Ari Aster's debut feature. However, what's especially worth noting is that the film is produced by Lars Knudsen, who also produced The VVitch: A New-England Folktale (2015). This is significant insofar as Hereditary bears more than a passing resemblance to Robert Eggers film. Mood, tone, theme, pacing, narrative structure, shot composition; all recall The VVitch at times. Even the plot itself shares some important beats, most evident in the last shot, which is both narratively and compositionally identical to the shot in The VVitch when Black Phillip speaks for the first time - a BCU on a possessed character as a disciple speaks off camera. And like The VVitch, you either go with the plot and let it burrow under your skin, or you remain detached and most likely find the whole enterprise unintentionally hilarious.

In a more generalised sense, there is quite a bit to praise here. For a start, to say the film is a horror is to basically give away the last 20 minutes, as up until that point it's a superbly realised semi-realist study of the crippling psychological disintegration that can accompany bereavement. Speaking of giving things away, very unusually for a Hollywood film, Hereditary's trailer brilliantly misdirects the audience, making it seem as if the film revolves around the death of Annie's (Toni Collette) mother, when in actual fact, this plot strand is abandoned at the end of the first act, after which the death of Charlie (Milly Shapiro) becomes the central focus. One thing the film does especially well is reward viewers who are paying attention. There are multiple hints and signs throughout of what is going to happen in the last act, and one especially well structured reward involves by far the creepiest moment in the film; the blond man standing in the shadows of the doorway, barely visible, smiling manically at Peter (Alex Wolff). This is actually the second time we see this character; he is also at the wake early in the movie, watching Charlie approaching the coffin, and, again, smiling unnaturally. This can be easily missed if you're not paying attention, and it's an extremely well realised pseudo-Easter egg. Also worthy of praise is Toni Collette, who gives a superb performance that partly recalls Shelley Duvall's hysterics in The Shining (1980). Collette's ability to communicate everything in her psyche by simply changing her facial expression is outstanding, and somewhat reminiscent of that extraordinary piece of wordless acting by Halle Berry in the last scene of Monster's Ball (2001). This is especially noticeably especially towards the end of the film, when Annie is alternating between being herself and being controlled by King Paimon; Collette's mastery of her own facial expression tells the audience everything it needs to know about what is happening.

Joshua Rothkophf, in his review of the film for Time Out New York calls it "a new generation's Exorcist." That's a bit over the top; it won't have half the same kind of societal impact as William Friedkin's film did, and it's nowhere near as good as the best horror film of the last few decades, The Blair Witch Project (1999). However, it's very well made, is creepy as hell, dares to put real grief on screen, and features excellent performances (and, thankfully, only a couple of jump scares). Well worth seeing.
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Worth it.
malehandmodel29 August 2018
Brilliant use of imagery and foreshadowing. The cast is phenomenal. The movie is a ritual, not a series of events. Tense and disturbing, you won't see the end coming.
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Stop reading any negative comments and watch this movie!
afojgel22 August 2018
I am an avid fan of the horror genre and started feeling hopeless about the next time i will see a movie that will move me. Hereditary did it and i am grateful first of all to this amazing actress called Toni Collete. Man,she is bringing the best performance of her career. The cinematography it's beautiful and original.The suspense created by subtle sounds on the background. It's a whole experience,thank you Mr Ari Aster for directing this movie with such craftsmanship. And for give us hope that it's still possible to make a great horror-drama movie.
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Are you kidding me?
loren_fieldhouse9 June 2018
Warning: Spoilers
I don't know what movie these other reviewers think they were watching, but the "Hereditary" I saw that starred Toni Collette was just awful!

If you're looking for a slow-paced, yawn inducing experience, this is the movie for you. It starts out with a good premise, but SLOWLY yet most surely, it manages to droll through a vague and desperate "I'll bet you forgot Rosemary's Baby" storyline that culminates in the rebirth of some silly demon king that is made complete only after he receives a proper Jughead-styled crown.

Don't waste your time or money. Don't read reviews from stupid people. Trust me.
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Horrifyingly Awful
madzima10 June 2018
Reading all these reviews about what a "Masterpiece" this movie is makes me wonder if I missed something or if I'm just stupid. If you're someone who's raving about how creative and revolutionary this movie is, you're either just trying to fit in as a horror movie snob or saw a completely different movie.

Seriously, I sat there through the first hour of the movie and wondered if I somehow walked into the wrong theater and was seeing a different movie. The pacing is incredibly slow, and I understand that the first half of a slow burning horror film like this one is supposed to build suspense, but unlike other horror flicks this film keeps you waiting and waiting and waiting for absolutely nothing.

The only positive thing about this movie is the acting. The movie does have good performances from Gabriel Byrne and Toni Collette, although I don't feel her acting is "Oscar worthy" like people are saying. It just makes me wonder how desperate these two great actors must have been for a paycheck.

This movie was marketed as something that would make people rethink what horror movies are all about. In the end, there's nothing to spoil about this movie because nothing happens. The plot develops extremely slowly as a poorly written family drama. Then in the last 20-30 minutes the director must have remembered that he was supposed to be making a horror movie and just slapped together an ending full of countless scary movie cliches that left everyone in the theater scratching their heads. Someone at my showing actually said out loud when the credits began to roll "wtf was that movie" and everyone laughed.

I get that cinematography wise this movie is supposed to be brilliant, because it does look pretty good. But good visuals aren't enough to save a boring movie with a poorly put together plot in my opinion. I've seen a few other reviewers on here mention how people in the audience were laughing out loud during the "scary" parts of this movie, and I can say that most of the theater I was in, including myself, was filled with people laughing and loudly cracking jokes at how cliche and confusing the ending of this movie is.

DO NOT waste your money on this movie. Stay home. Spend time with your family. Read a book. Spend 2 hours of your life doing literally anything except for watching Hereditary.
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Hellish, Terrifying, Perfect
neener37078 June 2018
I don't even know where to begin with this one. When I heard that it was being made by some of the same people who worked on The Witch (which some people didn't like, but I liked it), I had high hope for this film, and boy was I not disappointed. Such a breath of fresh air for the genre in a time where Hollywood has prostituted it and released nothing but garbage. Not only was the film scary as hell, but it also had a lot to say about grief and trauma. The way the film is put together is its strongest part. The pacing, the editing, the cinematography, and the sound design all worked together to create a truly unique and hellish vision of horror. I'm a horror veteran, and rarely actually jump or feel tense, but this film made me feel like a horror virgin again, actually frightening me like no other Hollywood film can.

The acting was also superb all around and only adds to the horror being presented on screen. Each character was unique and added their own style to this modern horror masterpiece. I saw many people in the theater jumping and looking away, some being grown men. A couple people even left, and I can't imagine its because they felt it was a bad film, because it was not. I am seriously considering going and seeing it again which hasn't happened since the Evil Dead remake and The Raid. I would say this film is a must see for any horror fan or for anyone wanting to be scared out of their minds.
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Slow burn family grief drama turned horror... fizzles in the end
robertegblack14 June 2018
Warning: Spoilers
This film will be too slow for many. But the slower, quieter moments ground the film brilliantly. Family drama and grief, mental illness, and bizarre visuals involving miniatures (that should have a better thematic payoff later but end up as nice visuals more befitting a different film.

It's well put together visually, with some great acting, even in some (emotionally) extreme moments. (Gabriel Byrne is a little understated but works as a sort of 'straight man' amidst the insane.

Which brings me to SPOILERS:

The film is visually impressive and almost painfully (in a good way) deliberate in its pacing until, eventually the supernatural bits overtake the much deeper family melodrama. The ending feels too conventional and also strangely tracked on; a final explanation even comes in voiceover that may very well have been ADR-ed after test audiences were confused.

It's strange-I loved this film until somewhere in the third act when it turned too far away from the grounded place it has built for itself. Had the outlandish ending been in Toni Colette's character's head, I think it would have been an easy 10/10 for me.
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This movie is a gift
paulderouen-340988 August 2018
Warning: Spoilers
The acting in this movie was excellent but what makes it so special is the reward that you get if you are in the moment and you pay attention to this movie. The dark atmosphere and uneasy feelings that you get from things like a child who mutilates dead animals or the uncanny valley of the life-like miniatures made it hard to look away and not be pulled in to this dreadful tale. Also the sound and music were spot on.

Ari Aster has shown himself to be a powerful and resourceful director using lots of different methods to tell this crooked and misdirecting horror story. I wish I could watch it again for the first time.

This may make me sound like a horrible person, but I feel really lucky that I was in the right mindset to watch this film. The bad reviews make me feel like I received something valuable that not everyone is going to get because I got to experience what the director wanted me to see the first time through. if you watch this movie and you are not invested. you are never going to get to watch it for the first time again because the ending will spoil that. And this movie is clearly a labor of love that doesn't come around very often. Especially for the actors. Toni Collete and Peter Wolf, particularly, gave us a piece of themselves on the screen.

When the ending comes, it will look silly to you if you weren't ready to see what was coming. SPOILER A lot of people had an issue with all the nudity. These were not models, the nudity was not fun to look at. The thing is, devil worshipers and satanists are often naked for rituals. There are lots of reasons but the one that I recall the most is that it is a rejection of the original sin, the rejection of the application of shame to nakedness. The rejection of a penalty applied to mankind by God. In that sense, it is supposed to make you uncomfortable. And the normal human reaction to feeling uncomfortable is to detach. So there were people in the audience laughing.

I felt the movie was slowly pulling you out of your comfort zone and that the pot was slowly and expertly brought to a boil. I feel lucky to be one of the people that really got their money's worth from this brilliant film.
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A gut-wrenching nightmare that's not for everyone
famekingdom10 June 2018
I really didn't know what to expect going in to see this film. I had seen the trailer and all of the good press for it, I adore Toni Collete, and I generally enjoy horror films. I left the theater with a pit in my stomach and came back the next day to see it again; this is a film that rewards multiple viewings.

The film began rather predictably, in my opinion. However, the truly unexpected and disorienting end of the first act grabbed my attention and never let up from there. This film digs its hooks in deep and slowly drags you down into a pit of despair. There is a gleam of light at the end of the tunnel, but it isn't what you think. This is the first film in a while to keep me on my toes throughout its runtime, even if its plot isn't groundbreaking. The amazing performances, sublime cinematography, and outrageously outstanding sound design makes this film a real treat for anyone with a special affection for the medium.

I've seen many compare this to The Exorcist and Rosemary's Baby, and I agree mostly with those comparisons. However, I also see this film as a distant relation to the original 1976 Carrie. Both films put family drama at the forefront and milk every ounce of dread from the truly hideous realities of familial cohabitation for what it's worth. What makes these films so stirring isn't jump scares, special FX, or "payoffs" to every tense scene they present; it is instead forefronting the all-to-real human tension and making the audience sit with it as uncomfortably as possible. The scenes that stick with me from Carrie aren't just her supernatural revenge at the prom, but the abuse from her mother and the gut-punching shower scene that opens the film. It's those moments of having to experience the very real ugliness of humanity that stir me and stay on my skin for days after seeing a film.

My opinion is that this film is a masterpiece and will certainly be joining my list of all-time favorite horror films. However, it is definitely not for everyone. This is a film that's made to stand out to already-avid film fans with an appreciation for the format; those with short-attention spans and/or those accustomed to the mile-a-minute breakneck pace of most horror films won't enjoy this. I also think (and I'm going out on a limb here) that this is a film most readily accessible to those who have already experienced a major physical or existential loss or crisis in their life or are intimate with the feeling of being manipulated. There a lot of reports of people "giggling" during the film; I think some of this can be chalked up to the sheer discomfort this film causes, but I also think it may in some cases come from not being able to grasp the logic and affective phenomenon of grief that this film so accurately and exquisitely captures. This film is a meditation on themes of grief, family, manipulation, and ultimately a lack of control. This isn't a film like The Conjuring (which is also one of my favorites) that gives you more than enough "cues" to be scared during certain parts of the film; instead, this film relies on your attention to detail and your willingness to be devoured by its sinister textures.
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