Ari Aster’s horror triumph feeds off suppressed fear that we cannot escape our biological fate – leaving audiences unnerved

  • Warning: contains spoilers

On the face of it, Hereditary is a slice of silly supernatural hokum replete with the threadbare tropes of the genre. However, Ari Aster’s debut scarer has nonetheless struck a nerve: it seems to linger in the minds of those who see it. Why?

Many horror films (Blair Witch, The Babadook, It Follows) jog the Jungian subconscious to tickle merely fanciful fears. Others (Carrie, Don’t Look Now, Get Out) dare to touch upon real-world terrors. Often, it’s the latter whose spectres persist.

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