Hereditary: A mixture of horror and tragedy

June 13, 2018



After Ellen, the grandmother and matriarch figure in the Graham family dies, a series of strange and unfortunate events take place. The family soon realizes that there is more than meets the eye, and they begin to unravel dark secrets that will forever set in motion their inevitable and tragic fate.



Toni Collette as "Annie", the unstable and psychotic mother in Ari Aster's new horror film "Hereditary".





At first, the film starts slow and sets an eerie mood. You are introduced to a dysfunctional family, where there is a lack of communication between all its members. 


Mixed emotions and reactions towards Ellen’s death are evident from the beginning. Once the series of events start to unfold, the movie increasingly becomes more unsettling and everything becomes even worse for the family.


Do not expect any exorcisms, mediums, or priests to save the day. This is not a film that has a happy ending for the protagonists, like in “The Conjuring” or  “Insidious” films.


Some viewers may find some of the themes explored to be depressing and scary. It showcases problems that many families may experience and face in real life.


For instance, viewers witness the loss of a loved one, the feeling of solitude and guilt, and how one loses hope and the grasp of reality in their daily life routines. The film has similar yet distinct vibes to the films “Babadook,” “The Innocents” and “Carrie.”  


Additionally, some of the scary scenes can be compared to those found in the film “The Exorcism of Emily Rose”. It seems like Director Ari Aster, in his attempt to make something unique, tried to make a film using certain plot devices found in the mentioned films.

I wouldn’t recommend this film to those who are currently experiencing difficult situations, as the film does delve into heavy topics such as suicide, tragic deaths, and abortion. For instance, throughout the film, viewers see how the relationship between the son Peter and the mother, Annie, is quite strained and complicated.

On a side note, the actor’s performance was well executed. Despite the certain issues with the plot, they all did great with the roles they were given. 


Especially, Toni Collette in her role as the mother. Her character gave me crippling anxiety and inspired fear in me throughout the film. 


Milly Shapiro’s role as the daughter, Charlie, was also quite impressive, and she also did well in coming off as a creepy and eccentric character. Despite her potential, however, the film diminishes Charlie’s impact. 
Her character falls short of the expectations I initially had for her.

Although the film may not be what some may expect, the movie does well in maintaining your attention to everything that takes place. It definitely has quite strong and impactful scenes that gave the film potential, but by the end, I think it loses its momentum.

The ending itself becomes rather anti-climactic.I give this film a 3 out of 5 stars. Not bad for a scary movie, but definately not revolutionary.

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