Hereditary (2018) Review

Hereditary (2018)

Directed & Written by Ari Aster

Starring: Toni Collette, Alex Wolff, Milly Shapiro, Ann Dowd, Gabriel Byrne

Plot Synopsis: (via IMDb)
After the family matriarch passes away, a grieving family is haunted by tragic and disturbing occurrences, and begin to unravel dark secrets.

My Opinion:

I always get very excited when there’s a lot of hype about a horror movie. Horror isn’t exactly my favorite genre but I love the rare occasion when one is actually good. And it is a very rare occasion, especially these days. But I LOVED The Babadook & It Follows and was hoping Hereditary would live up to those as it had the same sort of hype. Umm. No. Damn. I was very disappointed. However, there were some things that I liked about it & it’s still much better than the majority of modern horrors.

First of all: Yes, the acting is very good. Yes, I like it when horror films have decent acting like in this and in The Babadook. There’s no reason for horror movies to not have good acting & I wish that more of them tried to have actors of a decent standard. Collette is certainly the standout here in what will have been a very difficult & intense role. Byrne also did very well as her husband who tries to keep things together as did Wolff and the young Shapiro playing her messed-up children. I think the acting in horror doesn’t get enough credit sometimes – I’d hate to have played Collette’s role in this! I think it would psychologically damage me for life. However, I felt no connection to this family. I’m not sure why, as the acting was good. For whatever reason, the movie didn’t have me sympathizing with these characters (which will be a big reason why it’ll get a lower rating from me than I was hoping & expecting). Maybe if the son had been likable to begin with…


I did like the film’s overall vibe at the start. I really liked the creepy dollhouses/miniatures. I liked that the movie seemed to be going for a Rosemary’s Baby thing, which is a true classic. Hereditary was atmospheric and the sense of dread was palpable. I soooo wanted to like it more. But, as I said, I didn’t care about the family. And then the story went completely off the rails. Now, I don’t mind when a story goes completely fucking nuts. I love David Cronenberg’s films, for crying out loud. I love crazy! But the ending of this just didn’t work for me. It was messy. The whole story just seemed a little too convoluted. That’s horror for you, though – you either love or absolutely hate how they choose to end them. I almost always hate the endings to horror films. I wouldn’t say that I totally hated Hereditary’s ending, but… Meh. It just didn’t quite work for me. To be fair, however, I’m not sure how it should have ended. It did at least end up in the sort of way you’d expect based on things that happened & were said previously in the film (so pay close attention).

Hereditary is a very good horror film compared to the majority of rubbish modern horror films that are out there. I’ve seen modern horror that I’ve liked much much more than this one but I can see why Hereditary has its fans even if it didn’t quite work for me. The film that it most reminds me of is The Witch (2015), which also had great reviews but which I found well-made yet very disappointing. If you loved The Witch, I think you’ll probably like Hereditary too. I prefer Hereditary but that’s mainly because of ONE scene. If not for that one scene, I’d give this at least half a point less. You know the scene I mean if you’ve seen this! That scene was totally unexpected. Well, no… Not entirely unexpected as it was obvious something was going to happen where it did. But it was a ballsy scene and changed the way you thought things were gonna go based on the marketing. So, yeah – an extra half a point at least for a horror movie having a scene that actually managed to surprise people.

My Rating: 7/10

The Usual Suspects (1995) IMDB Top 250 Guest Review

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For today’s IMDB Top 250 guest review, we have Lisa of Culturevultureexpress. Lisa got very excited about my IMDB Top 250 project and immediately grabbed a bunch of excellent films to review. Thanks again for joining in, Lisa! 🙂

There are still some movies up for grabs if anyone wants to do a guest IMDB Top 250 review. You can find the list HERE.

Now over to Lisa to see what she has to say about The Usual Suspects, IMDB rank 26 out of 250

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The Usual Suspects was a 1995 slick, intense and perfect crime-thriller. With an All-Star cast which included Kevin Spacey, Gabriel Bryne, Chazz Palminteri and Pete Postlethwaite, the plot, written by the amazingly talented Christopher McQuarrie, was dramatic as it meandered its way through deceit and mystery.

Directed by Bryan Singer, the film centres around Roger “Verbal” Kint, a cripple, and his recalling of events through flashbacks while he is been questioned by the cop Dave Kujan (Palminyeri) after been found at the scene of a drugs heist which has gone drastically wrong with only Verbal and a hospitalized Hungarian crewman and criminal been the only survivors. The drugs belong to the mysterious Keyser Soze, the hero of a children’s horror. Soze is said to have killed his family to show some evil men how determined he was when they threatened his family in a bid to get to him. His name even scares really tough men. He tells how there was a truck hijacking where five suspects including Verbal were arrested by the police. They are a mixture of criminals Dean Keaton (Byrne), Fred Fenster (Benicio Del Toro), Todd Hockney (Kevin Pollak) and Michael McManus (Stephe Baldwin).

Much of the mystery of the story revolves around the identity of Keyser Soze who is a violent mobster who has set these criminals on the path to their deaths with the help of
Mr. Kobayashi (Postlethwaite), Soze’s wing-man who becomes a possible suspect to be Soze due to his cruel and sinister demeanor.

This film is famous for it’s ending and rightly so. I won’t give away the ending. All I will say is that it is the best twist in film history as far as I’m concerned.