Director: Ari Aster
Writer(s): Ari Aster
Producer(s): Lars Knudsen, Patrik Andersson
Costume(s): Andrea Flesch
Cinematography: Pawel Pogorzelski
Starring: Florence Pugh, Jack Reynor, William Jackson Harper, Will Poulter, and Vilhelm Blomgren
This movie starts with a minimal, barely there title card yet the entire film is quite… beautiful looking. There are some really cool moments of color and shots that took my breath away more than the plot by a smidge.
The film taking place mostly outside, using a lot if not 90% natural lighting (and during solstice) makes quite an effect.
Such harsh lighting, but purposeful, and when you combine that with natural landscape and setting as background, Midsommar flourishes. Ari Aster, who also did Hereditary (and I love a lot of the cinematography and shots/effects in that), I couldn’t imagine what he could bring to Midsommar.
The plot is quite simple: we are following a group to Sweden during a festival that takes place every 50 years but the festival is really a cult. A pagan cult to be exact. Immediately, I thought of the film The Wicker Man (original 1973 British film) but this is NOTHING like it.
I want to give a lot of credit to Andrea Flesch who was the costume designer for Midsommar. What makes the film stand out, not just visually with color or tracking shots is costumes play a big role. It’s the transformation of the friends being integrated into this cult. It’s seeing the main character Dani (Pugh) go through this change from a grieving young adult, wearing these… very dull like colors and clothes to then covered and immersed in flowers as the May Queen, surrounded by color and life. She goes from a dark space in her life (her family, her stagnant and toxic relationship with her boyfriend) to then a “safe” space that is light and colorful.
There are these random pops of color that spurt out from the background or at the forefront. In a sea of mostly white clothing and neutral tones, Midsommar presents a color story.
If you have not seen this film, please do so if this film is up your alley. There are subject matters (suicide, incest talk/observation) that can be triggering to some audiences.