Gabriel Byrne's new film has been called "the most traumatically terrifying horror movie in ages" 3 months ago

Gabriel Byrne's new film has been called "the most traumatically terrifying horror movie in ages"

"Every family tree hides a secret..."

Gabriel Byrne could be one of 2018's biggest horror stars, as his new film has gone down a storm following its premiere at the Sundance Film Festival.

The Irish actor stars alongside Toni Collette in Hereditary, a new nightmare from production/distribution company A24, who have previously released the likes of Green Room, The Witch and The Killing of a Sacred Deer, as well as Saoirse Ronan's Oscar-nominated Lady Bird.

The plot looks like this:

When Ellen, the matriarch of the Graham family, passes away, her daughter’s family begins to unravel cryptic and increasingly terrifying secrets about their ancestry. The more they discover, the more they find themselves trying to outrun the sinister fate they seem to have inherited.”

A24 are convinced that they have another hit on their hands, adding:

"Writer-director Ari Aster unleashes a nightmare vision of a domestic breakdown that exhibits the craft and precision of a nascent auteur, transforming a familial tragedy into something ominous and deeply disquieting, and pushing the horror movie into chilling new terrain with its shattering portrait of heritage gone to hell.”

Following its bow at Sundance, the reaction has been pretty huge and unanimous; this one is going to get under the skin.

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A.A. Dowd, a famously strict critic for the A.V. Club, began his review by claiming that he doesn't scare easily, before admitting that Hereditary left him "in a state of deep distress, palms soaked, breath shallow" as the film unfolded.

Vanity Fair's write-up, meanwhile, makes comparisons to The Babadook, with critic Richard Lawson praising "a terrifically unsettling look at the howling despair of grief, combined with that good, old-fashioned fear of what demons we may have inherited from our parents"

Steven Prokopy of Slashfilm calls it "an early contender for the best horror film of 2018", while Time Out reckon that it's The Exorcist for a new generation, awarding the film five out of five.

The poster is pretty great, too:

Gabriel Byrne

A smart, patient horror with little-to-no jump scares? We're in.

There's no release date for Hereditary at the moment, but considering the early word of mouth, it shouldn't be long before we know when it's hitting Irish screens.

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