Female Empowerment in Ari Aster’s Midsommar

by Ethan Rei

Historically, horror has been one of the main film genres to consistently utilize women as the main focus characters. However, this genre has also proven to be problematic in its portrayal of the female gender whether it be through hyper-sexualization or the repeated use of the same character stereotypes. This has led to an overall decline in boundary-pushing depictions of women within popular horror. Ari Aster’s second full-length film Midsommar combines a lead female character and a well-crafted narrative to deliver a unique depiction of female empowerment. The plot of the film centers around Dani (Florence Pugh) as she joins her boyfriend and his friends on a trip to rural Sweden to participate in a traditional midsummer festival.

Continue Reading →

Concealed Malefactor: A Close Look into the Cult Ruled by Women

by Bai Yi Lin

The film Midsommar directed by Ari Aster portrays women as powerful weapons, showing two sides of a coin. Many questions arise after watching the film regarding the women’s role and the way they have been portrayed. Unlike the usual trope where women are cast as insignificant side characters or irrelevant personas that even death could not accentuate, Midsommar pushed its boundaries on women in society. Aster demonstrates how women can be leaders despite the odds and by adding in a touch of culture, the film was able to showcase an ideal world. A world separate from the current male-driven civilization.

Continue Reading →