Updated: Jun 18
I’m not sure I could even put Midsommar into words.
Midsommar is a recently released movie by the one and only Ari Aster, the director responsible for the haunting Hereditary. If you somehow missed the hype of it, Hereditary became the talk of every town because of how innovative it was. It was demented, unexpected, and disheartening. Everyone’s disturbance was somehow overpowered by the fascination of it all. I’ve heard so many people say how much they loved Hereditary, and I can’t think of once when someone mentioned its gruseomness of it first, if at all.
The themes that made Ari Aster’s breakout so remarkable, were ones that reappeared in his second grondbreaking cult-classic. Literally a cult classic.
Midsommar makes you want to rethink your European traveling dreams. Dani is an average girl with unimaginable life experiences under her belt. Before the graphic death of her parents and sister, her boyfriend of four years is shown talking about her in almost disgust to his friends. While out to dinner, they voice that they still can’t believe he hasn’t broken up with her, and she’s calling him again. The boyfriend, of who you’re supposed to side with because Dani is just oh so naggy, postpones the breakup he dreams of having with her, and invites her along the boys’ trip to Sweeden in attempt to ammend her unammendable pain after her loss. “She won’t say yes”, is something along the lines of what he tells his guy friends when they roll their eyes. Extending the offer just to be nice backfires when she unexpectedly accepts, and travels across the world last minute.
Christian, Dani’s boyfriend, has been planning a trip to Sweeden with three of his friends; a plan that he hid from Dani until his friend spilled the beans at a party. Pelle, one of Christian’s fellow graduate school buddies, invites the four others to his home; a “commune” in the outskirts of Sweeden for a special summer holiday. One of the friends, Josh, joins to write his thesis on the culture, and the other three go for a refreshing time away. As one can only imagine, it does not end up this way.
I went into Midsommar expecting something entirely different from the chilling Hereditary, and I’m so glad I did. Midsommar took the challenge of creating a horror film in a place where the sun almost never sets. Aster’s magic made the almost never ending sun so unsettling. The film was decorated in sunkissed yellows, sky blues, meadow greens, accompanied by boldly colored flowers. There’s something so juxtaposingly horrific about the cult’s horrendous behaviors in the exposed colorful daylight. That’s just one component of why this film is another classic Aster can put in his books.
From the costuming, to the cinematography, to the orginality, to the ability the film has to keep you absolutely disgusted but unable to pull away from the screen, to the theme of...feminism? Aster has absolutely done it again.