Midnight Mass

Midnight Mass ★★★★★

🏆95%
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An isolated island community experiences miraculous events - and frightening omens - after the arrival of a charismatic, mysterious young priest.

We all know how incredible he is as a Horror-centric Director, but this is what Mike Flanagan’s work has been building up to. This series perfectly balances religious themes, character depth, and traumatizing moments. Comparing it to Haunting of Hill House is difficult because they are two drastically different shows, as Midnight Mass focuses less on the jumps and more on inducing fear via the mystery of it all. This series also takes it a step further and chooses to tackle religion and religious themes in a way we have never seen. It tiptoes that line in a way that works well, as it never bashes religion; instead, this series shows how others can twist and manipulate people using religion. It is a fascinating exploration that only few writers/directors could pull off. Thankfully, Mike Flanagan is one that I would trust doing something like this, and he does not disappoint.

The slow build from episode to episode keeps you locked in, and every major revelation will cause many to openly gasp. Predictably does occasionally factor in, but every predictable turn would be followed by a shocking scene or moment. Once the true story comes to light, those locked will be excited to see what happens with it. I was also thoroughly impressed that the series refrains from being extremely on the nose with the true reveal of the show. It is evident what is happening, but the characters never really speak on it. This choice will annoy some, but I found it to be refreshing and fascinating. What knocks it out of the park it is the imagery here. There are a handful of shots in the beginning that will unnerve and unsettle you, but the real frights will begin to hit about halfway through the show. There is plenty of gore and violence for Horror enthusiasts, but there are also numerous simple shots where you see something terrifying happening in the background.

Beyond the scares themselves, the real meat of the story comes from the conversations. Characters are experiencing something in this series that causes them to discuss certain topics that will resonate with so many. These are the moments that hit the hardest, as it is such a well-written script. You can also look at how incredible this cast is from top to bottom. Rahul Kohli, Robert Longstreet, Zach Gilford, and Kate Siegal are all great. The two of note here are Samantha Sloyan and Hamish Linklater. Sloyan’s character will frustrate you to no end but in the best way possible. She knocks it out of the park. Linklater delivers one of the absolute best performances I have seen in a long time. This role calls for a lot from him as an actor, and he exceeds every expectation. It is such a well-rounded cast. I could go on for days about this series, but I will just tell you to watch it as soon as you can. Midnight Mass may be the best show of the year.

🔙Cry Macho
🔜Dear Evan Hanson

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