For those who love a good horror thrill, “Hereditary” is at the top of their top favorites. There are so many things that make this movie so spectacular, including symbolism and hidden elements throughout the film. Even though you may have recurring nightmares, you may have to watch the movie a few times to fully grasp all that it entails. To save you some time, we gathered 5 eerie moments you may have missed in “Hereditary”. (Warning: there are spoilers below.)
1. Annie is Barely Seen on the Ceiling
Ari Aster used dark lighting in this movie exceptionally. Some of the scariest moments happen as your eyes graze across the screen and find the hidden eerie images. There are multiple points throughout the movie where it may take a moment to fully see the ghastly appearances hidden in plain sight. One example of something you may have missed was when Peter (Alex Wolff) was asleep and wakes up to see the treehouse lit up. At first glance, you may miss Annie (Toni Collette) on the ceiling by having your eyes stuck on Peter. However, if you look up to the upper left-hand corner, you see her floating on the ceiling watching over him before seemingly flying out of the room. By the way, this isn’t the only time you see her on the ceiling, so keep an eye on it during your next watch.
2. Footsteps Around the House
One aspect Ari Aster nailed in this film is the sound effects. Rather than just having jump scares, there are small seemingly insignificant noises throughout the movie. After the family return home from the funeral, you first get a glimpse of inside the house. Although you do not see anything eerie in this scene, if you listen closely, there you will hear footsteps. While hearing footsteps in a house isn’t usually a cause for concern when a family returns, keep in mind that they have not entered yet. There is someone or something, rather, walking around the home, but it isn’t the family.
3. Shapes of Light Throughout the Movie
There is so much symbolism in “Hereditary”. If you pay close attention, you will see different symbols appear over and over again. One way Aster does this is through light moving across the screen. At first, you may take it to be some sort of effect to add a little pizazz to the movie without any real substance. However, nothing in this movie was created by accident. The light only appears when it is used to guide the characters down Paimon’s chosen paths. One moment where you really get an idea of how light plays a role happens in the scene where Annie is painting. If you look at the window, you will see light pass by. Then, a bottle of paint spills onto Joan’s (Ann Dowd) number. This is no coincidence, and if you watch carefully, you will see that the paint tipped over on its own; not by Annie
4. The Ties to Classroom Discussions to the Plot
Throughout the movie, you see Annie working on miniatures for her dollhouses. You see multiple scenes where she is making characters for those in her life and recreations of rooms in the house. As we mentioned before, there is a lot of symbolism in this movie. One classroom discussion shows a girl discussing Greek mythology. She says, “The characters are all just pawns in this horrible hopelessness.” There are many theories for the symbolism of the miniatures, but the most popular one states that the characters of this movie are like dolls. They are being controlled by another force, and have no control over their lives. They are essentially pawns, as the classmate put it.
5. Cult Members Seen Throughout the Movie
There are so many scenes where cult members can be seen. You will see them in obvious moments, such as the scene where a woman is waving to Charlie (Milly Shapiro) outside. One brief moment you may have missed takes place in the scene where Peter is smoking by his window. At first glance, it may appear that smoke is reappearing outside the window due to smoke. However, if you pay close attention to it, you can tell that it is actually the breath of someone watching him outside. There is also a pan over the house outside during the night. In the dark, it may be hard to make out exactly everything pictured. By looking closely, you can see multiple figures standing around the home. Lastly, when Peter enters the loft, you can see someone standing behind a beam. It’s easy to miss at first glance. Once you see it, though, you won’t be able to unsee it (much like everything else in this movie).