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Film Review: Toni Collette Discovers that Horror is ‘Hereditary’

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CHICAGO – The classic horror/psychological films continue to chill our souls long after the experience of them. “Hereditary” uses a masterful performance by Toni Collette, and layers it with symbolic commentary and freaky scares to accomplish that lingering discomfort. After viewing it, the cluck of the tongue will never be the same.

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 4.5/5.0
Rating: 4.5/5.0

Collette’s character is a mess, and it was established that she had been a mess for many years. But the tipping point she goes into is a revelation of performance… there were so many tics and challenges of her psyche that I’m surprised TC stayed sane. This is a classic horror film that has echoes of “Rosemary’s Baby,” but goes into another one-of-a-kind and sinister direction. The supporting cast – Gabriel Byrne, Alex Wolff, Ann Dowd and intense young newcomer Milly Shapiro are so reactive to Collette’s cues that the ensemble seems of one mind. This is the first feature film for writer/director Ari Aster, and it is a legend, to be compartmentalized and analyzed for many years to come.

The elderly mother of Annie (Toni Collette) has just died, and her family of husband Steve (Gabriel Byrne), son Peter (Alex Wolff) and daughter Charlie (Milly Shapiro) goes to her funeral without a sense of closure. Annie is an artist who specializes in miniature scene recreations, but as the stress of a new exhibit starts to weigh on her head, she begins to see visions of her dead mother.

Charlie is a hopeless outsider, rejected by her 13 year old peers. Annie attempts to have her assimilate by forcing older brother Peter to take his sister to a party. Left to her own devices at the event, she eats something that runs counter to her peanut allergy, and when Peter is told, it becomes a race to see if he can get her to emergency. The result of that incident throws everything into a tailspin, and long-buried secrets emerge.

“Hereditary” opens everywhere on June 8th. Featuring Toni Collette, Alex Wolff, Gabriel Byrne, Milly Shapiro and Ann Dowd. Written and directed by Ari Aster. Rated “R”

StarContinue reading for Patrick McDonald’s full review of “Hereditary”

Here1
Annie (Toni Collette) Experiences a Crazy Little Thing Called ‘Hereditary’
Photo credit: A24

StarContinue reading for Patrick McDonald’s full review of “Hereditary”

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