Ari Aster has only written and directed two feature films, but already he has created a significant reputation for himself and his movies. With an Ari Aster movie, you know you're going to be getting something dark and terrible, a story that is as emotionally taxing as it is visually horrifying. You also know you're going to be there for awhile. Both Hereditary and Midsommar were films over two hours long, and now Ari Aster is saying next film could see a runtime of four hours.
While Hereditary was barely over two hours long, Midsommar's first release came in at two and a half hours, and a nearly three hour long cut exists as well. That's a long time to be subjected to a movie that can torment an audience as well as its characters, but Asi Aster recently told a class at the University of California, Santa Barbara that his new movie will be even longer than that...
All I know is that it’s gonna be four hours long.
Technically, the length of the movie isn't actually all Ari Aster knows about his film. He also confirms it will be for audiences over 17, so rated-R here. It's also being described as a "nightmare comedy" which at the very least will change things up for the filmmaker. Comedy is certainly going to be new for him, though "nightmare" is a good description of his previous films as well.
A four hour movie is a long movie regardless of what you're watching, but it seems even longer for whatever it is Ari Aster is working on. Both horror movies and comedies tend to be films that come in with shorter runtimes than your average film, simply because both comedy and violence tend to work better when they don't overstay their welcome.
Avengers: Endgame took some heat for coming it at three hours long, and that was a Marvel movie, something with built-in audience appeal. A lot of people approached Martin Scorsese's The Irishman, at three and a half hours long, like it was a limited series because of its length. While Ari Aster has certainly built a fanbase thanks to two exceptional films, one wonders how many people would give a four long nightmare comedy a chance.
Our own ReelBlend also spoke with Ari Aster about his films and career. Check it out below.
Still, this sounds like it's going to be a very interesting movie regardless of how long it ends up being. Ari Aster is an incredibly creative filmmaker and whatever comes out of this is almost certainly going to be something worth checking out. Even if a lot of people might decide to wait to do so until they can watch it at home and hit pause now and then.