Midsommar (2019)

All non-Nolan related film, tv, and streaming discussions.
Post Reply
Posts: 7316
Joined: August 2012
Okay, so the draft I had of my thoughts on this got deleted, and then I forgot to post, but I saw this on Saturday. To sum up:

I didn't love it like I loved Hereditary, but I think it's still pretty damn good. I just have to agree the pacing is a bit of a bitch to get through - I didn't expect that, but I actually felt the length of this. There's a lot of repetition of certain stuff (like I almost cannot remember how many dinners they all had) and it put me into this interesting mindset, as if I was getting excited for the final culmination of the film, but also, with each dinner, increasingly annoyed. Those are just my superficial thoughts really, how I felt watching this, without giving it any further thought.

If the general audiences had some chance with Hereditary, I honestly can't imagine people liking this, at all. Like, off the top of my head, I can't really name anyone to whom I'd confidently recommend this lol. I'm not really using this to indicate the quality of the film. But it's an incredibly bizarre, disturbing and freaky film. The horror of it doesn't hit you as deep as Hereditary, but it's unsettling enough to send you into a perpetual "WTF" mood for the entirety of its runtime. The whole movie just has that off feeling about it, it's almost tangible. On the flip side, it's also pretty hilarious often times.
Idk if I was supposed to but once the old lady started pushing Christian by his butt cheeks, I just couldn't hold it in anymore. Also, everyone was being pretty petty to each other and it's funny, and there's enough of that dry humor too.

Also, you know those kinds of nightmares when you find yourself in a very uncomfortable situation but suddenly you're naked? I felt that.
The prologue section of this is probably the most directly similar to Hereditary. Aster just knows how to deliver mental and/or family tragedies in an extremely raw way. Those moments were probably the most "difficult" emotionally to stomach - although that, along with the status of her doomed relationship, helps you connect with Dani.
Which, for someone who deals with anxiety, is honestly not that difficult to do at first. Being gaslighted in relationships, being afraid of carrying too much emotional baggage for other people so you're always renegotiating things and compromising at your own expense, thinking you're the bad guy because of your emotional needs - this is the irl nightmare fuel to be fair. And it translates incredibly well on the screen.
The acting is obviously really amazing, but that's like water is wet. And this is a beautiful beautiful looking film, oh my god. Overall, even with my own gripes, I'm just amazed at Aster's direction. I'm extremely excited to see what he does next - if he sticks with horror, I'd be interested to see a change of pace for a bit, and see him move away from the overlapping themes in both this and Hereditary. I agree it's a way more ambitious film - maybe a bit too much to stick that perfect landing ultimately. I'm torn on whether I want to see this again - it's so strange and beautiful I almost want to witness that again, but at the same time it's so fucking gross like no thanks lmao. I'm almost enjoying the mental image of Ari Aster quietly sitting somewhere, maybe in his office or something, and actively trying to think of shit that would be way more disturbing that what Hereditary was. In a lot of ways, success!

My thoughts are a bit incoherent because I need sleep. I might add on later. Also, the single scariest bit from the film:
the old dude landing on his feet. HOLY SHIT. The entire theater gasped. Have I seen anything worse than this? Probably yes, but not really. That was fucking horrible I actually felt like my legs were being broken
edit: oh fuck, this was longer than i intended.

Posts: 8718
Joined: December 2011

Posts: 8242
Joined: August 2009
Florence Pugh is amazing and I can't wait to see her in more work.

What I got from this movie
it's about starting over for Dani. The film begins with her going through this very shocking and traumatic experience. And on top of that she never really fully gets to heal because of the people she is around. I think Dani chose Christian to be the sacrifice because it will give her a chance to start fresh.All her baggage is gone now and she can probably truly be herself. In the last few minutes of the movie, we see her be truly happy and not weighed down by other people.
I think I prefer Hereditary and the original Wicker Man over this (I include Wicker Man because this film and WM have many similarities) because those had tighter plots. Some parts of Midsommar just felt like a collage of weird shit. But at the same time I can kind of get it. With a midnight sun the days just turn into one long day and I think that's what the editing was trying to do to the viewer.

There's still a lot more for me to take in and think over but overall this was a weird and great experience.

Posts: 8242
Joined: August 2009
I hope they announce a five hour cut of the John Travolta and Fred Durst stalker movie next.

Posts: 18791
Joined: June 2010
Location: The White City
man the last thing this movie needs to be is longer sorry keith


but is there anything more chill than people sitting around drugged out on a bright day being confused by pagan rituals? i didnt want the party to stop

Posts: 7316
Joined: August 2012
but those fucking dinners man

Posts: 8242
Joined: August 2009
I want a YouTube tutorial for those dinners.

Posts: 510
Joined: July 2017
MagnarTheGreat wrote:
July 8th, 2019, 6:56 pm
There is such thing as 'belaboring the point' and terrible pacing, and this movie crossed that line.
Well said. I would expand on that point even further. A smart movie doesn't feel the need to slow down to a snail's pace to let you know just how smart it is. Contemplative shots that last minutes on end and horrible pacing do not add any extra meaning to a film. Many directors seem to think that, by virtue of simply bucking the editing norms, their films will become philosophical masterclasses. The resulting illusion actually often works in many cases, fooling many pretentious, pseudointellectual film connoissuers.

A scene in Hereditary such as
Charlie's decapitation
earns its slow pace. Its pace matches the event. But when you apply that pace to the most basic and benign moments, then you have a major problem. Ari Aster falls guilty to this.

The opposite of this problem actually happens in Avengers: Endgame when
Thor decapitates Thanos
and the scene ends within seconds.

Post Reply