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Hereditary’s harrowing new trailer reminds us Mother’s Day lurks just around the corner

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May 10, 2018

Stop staring in horror at that botched trailer preview at a Peter Rabbit screening, take your kids by the the hand, and flee now. The new trailer for mommy-issue horror extravaganza Hereditary has just landed, and you’re gonna want to make sure you and mom are safe and sound before sitting down and watching it together… or maybe not.

Toni Collette pretty much nails the entire psychodramatic premise of the hugely anticipated scare-fest from Ari Aster, the indie director who’s helming his first feature film after visiting similar subject matter in his 2015 short film Munchausen, as well as the truly messed-up family horror cult hit The Trouble With the Johnsons. “I never wanted to be your mother,” Collette’s character, Annie Graham, mic-drops on her two kids, Charlie and Peter, in this new clip. 

Whoa — talk about issues. If the manufactured scares in Hereditary can compete with real-impact psychological trauma like that, then Hereditary may promise a harrowing experience on multiple levels.

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Hereditary tells the story of how the Graham family copes after the children’s grandmother dies, leaving the family emotionally bereft in a way each channels to supremely ill effect. Daughter Charlie (Milly Shapiro) grows morbidly fixated on her late grandma; her brother Peter (Alex Wolff) processes his loss by seeing things that aren’t there. It all exacerbates Annie’s own poor coping skills, and she looks for answers in what’s probably the darkest place anybody should.

This year’s Sundance crowd already has lavished Hereditary with the same kind of buzz that helped propel Jordan Peele’s Get Out to critical and box-office success a year ago. And the now-infamous tale of how Hereditary’s preview trailer freaked out an audience full of Australian kids and their families before the movie they'd paid to see, Peter Rabbit, had even started... well, that’s probably only helped to amplify the buzz. 

Co-starring Gabriel Byrne as the children’s father and Ann Dowd as Joan, Annie’s support-group friend, Hereditary begins subverting family dynamics everywhere when it opens in theaters on June 8.