Hereditary is a horror film written and directed by Ari Aster, in his feature directorial debut. It stars Toni Collette, Alex Wolff, Milly Shapiro, Ann Dowd, and Gabriel Byrne.

The Story/The Direction:

The film starts off after Annie's (Collette) mother passes away. As the film progresses, she and her family discover many secrets about her mother. To describe the film any more would hinder the experience of seeing it on screen. Aster's passion for horror classics such as Rosemary's Baby and The Exorcist shine through this film. From its haunting imagry to its spine tingling score by Colin Stetson,  Aster knocks it out of the park. Fans of both arthouse and mainstream horror pictures should be able to find this film enjoyable as Aster mixes elements of both in this film. He puts the audience in these characters' shoes as they try to discover the mysteries behind their family. 

The Characters:

Collette's performance of this essentially bipolar Annie is absolutely fantastic. It is so raw that she deserves a nomination for Best Actress at least. Her children played by Wolff and Shipro are both great as well. They make each child unique and troublesome. Their interactions with their mother feel very real and their relationship is the core of this horror film. In addition, Dowd's Joan is also great. Joan meets Annie at therapy and tries to help her move on after the death of Annie's mother. 

The Flaws:

The main flaw is that this film has a lot of exposition. When looking into characters' background, the film has one character explain it to another instead of showing it. The film also has a lot of red herrings that are meant to distract the viewers but when revealed as such, there's no explanation for them. They are mostly used for effect than anything functional. 


The flaws are fairly forgivable because everything surrounding them is done so well. The directing is immensly good especially for a first outing. The acting is on point and this film is so horrifying that it will possibly have viewers sleeping with the light on. It may not be as good as the classic horror films but that does not mean it will not be one in the future. It is a amazing film that is worth seeing in theatres and buying on Blu-ray when it comes out.

Rating: 4.5/5.0 bowties

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