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Hereditary tells the story of the Graham family. Annie Graham is a sculptor of miniature art and lives with her husband Steve, their son Peter and their reserved and eccentric daughter Charlie. At her mother’s funeral Annie delivers a eulogy discussing their unorthodox relationship and her mother’s secretive private life. This leads into Annie visiting a therapy session where it becomes clear that Annie has experienced a great deal of loss in her life along with members of her family suffering with mental health issues.
Not long after the funeral, she begins to see apparitions bringing fear and tension into the house, this comes after we discover that Annie’s mothers grave has been desecrated.
While these tragic events unfold, Annie and Steve try to keep their family together while dealing with the usual teenager issues. Peter lies to his parents about going to a school event when instead intends to go to a party. Peter is forced to take his sister Charlie along and this leads to more suffering for the Graham family.
Annie begins to learn more about her mother’s life and come to terms with her own issues regarding her mental health and her relationship with her family. “Hereditary” leads you down a long, winding path with twists and turns all the way to its conclusion. It is a film about our connections to family and shows you that, in some ways, no matter how different you may look and feel, the family that came before you control who you really become.
Written and directed by the popular Ari Aster, this is typical of his work. The direction in “Hereditary” and the look and feel of the film, again a unique trademark of Aster, were the favourite parts of the movie. The script is well written but in some ways it left me feeling confused. I think I may have to give “Hereditary” another watch as I’m sure there are things I may have missed previously.
The cast and crew are great, especially Toni Collette and Milly Shapiro. In a movie exploring the relationships between family, especially mother and daughter, those two have great moments in the film.
As mentioned earlier, the film is not a sit back and not pay attention movie. You’re going to need to watch and you’ll probably find yourself sucked into the movie from the beginning to the well built ending. I’ll be honest, When I first saw this movie, it didn’t really work for me, but after I replayed the movie in my head I developed and understanding and appreciation for it.
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