Simon’s review published on Letterboxd:
More abstract and expansive compared to HEREDITARY, and an even better film for it. Ari Aster handles the key thread of familial grief -> found family -> indoctrinated and radicalized into a white supremacist cult with so much thoughtfulness and even subtlety considering how it’s both an explicit part of the text yet so easy to overlook* (notice how Connie and Simon, both POC, are the first two characters of the visitors who die). Even better is Aster makes the darkly comedic undertones of his first feature more overt in this, made all the more satisfying by the fact that you’re laughing while watching literal Nazis die gruesome deaths at various times. The filmmaking alone is noticeably bolder here—Pawel Pogorzelski’s photography in particular is gorgeous—and while I can understand why one would prefer the tighter pacing of the Theatrical Cut, I think the Director’s Cut makes this both more complete and feel richer in atmosphere and scope, almost like an epic. What gives this its emotional centre, however, is a magnificent, career-best performance from Florence Pugh, whose wailing screams ensure you genuinely feel Dani’s agony. In short, another masterpiece from Aster, and the best film of 2019.
*If you know someone who unironically thinks the ending of this is an Epic Girlboss Moment™️, you should probably stay far away from them.