Hereditary ★★★★★

This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

This review may contain spoilers.

"okay, interesting. so he thinks he has control. but remember, sophocles wrote the oracle so that it was unconditional, meaning herecles never had any choice, right? so does that make it more tragic or less tragic than if he has a choice?"

rewatching hereditary today, i finally realized why ari aster's films resonate with me so deeply and leave me feeling so shaken. hereditary is much more than a horror movie - it's a tragedy too. the idea that the characters are literally designed to fail and all we can do is watch, helplessly, as their inevitable fate slowly creeps towards them is what really terrifies me. but unlike in a Shakespearean tragedy, there is no catharsis. there is no relief. there's a heartbreaking and terrifying moment where peter knows annie is possessed, but overcome by fear all he can do is cry out for his mother, who's now long gone. he's reduced to nothing but a frightened little boy. and then there's a moment of silence, and we think maybe peter's cries have caused annie to snap out of it - but before we can get our hopes up, aster pans up to reveal annie levitating above her son, decapitating herself, as if to mock us for having any hope at all. this film is so disturbing because it plays on that thought we've all had at least once; what if this is all planned out, and we don't have a say in what happens?

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