It’s only June, but Jordan Peele’s Us seems already destined to be the iconic horror film of 2019. The director’s second film is bolder, stranger, and more enigmatic than Get Out ever was, and immediately solidified the red jumpsuit and scissors as everyone’s last-minute Halloween costume from here on out. But there’s another horror movie coming this summer that could actually give Us a fight for most terrifying film of the year—and no, we’re not talking about IT: Chapter 2.
Hereditary director Ari Aster is dropping his second feature film, Midsommar, on July 3, and even Peele himself thinks the film is brilliantly scary, apparently. On Thursday, Entertainment Weekly premiered an interview between Peele and Aster that is set to appear in the next issue of Fangoria, and Peele just can’t stop gushing about how “unique” and “atrociously disturbing” Midsommar is.
“When I texted you after the screening, I wrote, ‘I think you’ve made the most idyllic horror film of all time,'” Peele told Aster. “You’ve taken Stepford Wives and shattered the attractiveness of that movie with this one. That alone is a feat. Also, there are some obvious comps out there, but this movie is just so unique. This hasn’t existed yet, and anything after Midsommar is going to have to contend with it. I mean, this usurps The Wicker Man as the most iconic pagan movie to be referenced.”
That’s some pretty gushing praise coming from the man who is literally the next Rod Serling. Presumably, Peele’s referring to Robin Hardy’s 1973 Wicker Man and not the 2006 remake where Nic Cage punches women and screams about bees, since everything we’ve seen of Midsommar so far looks extremely indebted to Hardy’s landmark 70s horror film.
The movie follows a group of young couples who wind up visiting an isolated village for a summertime festival that dissolves into some kind of horrifying, pagan cult ritual. The trailers are scary enough as it is, but according to Peele, the movie is way more than just another horror film.
“It plays a weird sleight of hand, where it transcends the horror of itself. It is an ascension of horror,” Peele continues. “That was some of the most atrociously disturbing imagery I’ve ever seen on film, and yet I experienced it with this open-mouthed, wild-eyed gape.”
So, uh, yeah—safe to say that Peele liked it a lot. Could this one actually be more traumatizing than Hereditary? We’ll have to wait until July 3, when Midsommar hits theaters, to see for ourselves. This is going to be a brutally scary Fourth of July, everybody!