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Midsommar poster

Ari Aster blew audiences and critics away with his last film Hereditary. Now the writer/director is back with his new film Midsommar, which from the outside looks significantly less like a horror movie, but based on early critic reactions is no less disturbing.

The first group of critics has now seen Aster's new movie, and if there's a single running theme through the reactions hitting social media, it's probably summed up by Atom Tickets' Alisha Grauso...

Three-word Midsommar review: What the fuck...

A similar sentiment was voiced by Birth. Movies. Death.'s Scott Wampler who wants to prepare those of us who haven't seen it for what we're in for...

Hahaha. Midsommar gonna fuck y’all up.

Similar language is being used by a lot of people. It seems quite clear that whatever Midsommar might be missing in blood, guts, and violence, it more than makes up for in pure dread. As Slashfilm's Jacob hall puts it...

Like with Hereditary, Ari Aster uses overwhelming grief as a gateway into a slowly escalating tunnel of nightmares. Not a visceral scare-fest, but something so much more unpleasant, darkly funny and yes, totally fucked.

The trailer for Midsommar only vaguely explains what the hell is even happening in the movie, but we know that the story focuses on a couple, played by Jack Reynor and Florence Pugh, who travel to Sweden to attend a mid-summer festival. However, the planned vacation becomes something else entirely as the locals seem to be less a festival crowd, and more a cult.

"Disturbing" may the best single word to describe Midsommar. That's the word Jordan Peele has used, As Nerdist's Lindsey Romain puts it, some elements of the film are great, but they're actually so good at accomplishing the goal, that the movie itself actually becomes less enjoyable.

Midsommar. wow. i don’t know that i’ve ever felt so gutted and seen by a movie. i felt sick, i felt joy - i felt so much. above all else: i’ve never seen such a wicked, accurate depiction of intoxicating mania. i adored it and i hate it. florence pugh is god level.

Of course, while the majority of critics are praising the film, opinions are all subjective and there will always be those that feel differently. iO9's Germain Lussier is one who felt that while the world the movie created was impressive, the story told in that world failed to live up to the expectation...

Seems like I'm one of the few who didn't love Midsommar. It's exquisitely shot & designed but ultimately so wrapped up in its (admittedly cool) world building, it neglects to tell a story that feels worthy of that world. All the pieces are there but they never quite come together.

I for one am both intrigued and utterly terrified of these reviews. I can do violent horror movies just fine, but those that fill you with so much dread that you begin to feel physically ill are the movies that really get to me. They can be great, but sometimes, at least for me, that feeling can be too much.

Full reviews are starting to pop up for the movie now that it's screened. Midsommar hits theaters July 3.

Midsommar Exclusive Interviews | Ari Aster, Jack Reynor and More

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