Despite the failure of Beau is Afraid, Ari Aster considers it his "best film"

Despite the failure of Beau is Afraid, Ari Aster considers it his “best film”

The director of Midsommar is very proud of what he accomplished with his latest film, even if it worked much less well than the previous two.

In an interview with the magazine Empire, Ari Aster returns to his artistic objective concerning Beautiful is Afraid, his third film with Joaquin Phoenix. The film is a kind of hallucinatory epic, sometimes surreal, in which the character of Beau (Joaquin Phoenix), a hyper-anxious man has to go to his mother.

The director who first delved into horror with Heredity And Midsommarexplains that he made a picaresque film (a genre that first appears in literature with the character of Don Quixote created by Cervantes): “I consider this film to be a picaresque film, and I think that the tradition of this genre involves a certain irreverence towards any narrative structure.” he declares to justify the sometimes confusing hybrid form of his film. “The film is constructed to change form often”.

Ari Aster strongly recommends that spectators do not give up on the first viewing and try the experience at least a second time to appreciate the three non-linear acts of his latest film: “I hope people go back. I think this is a film that requires a second viewing. I don’t think you know what it is until you get to the end. I think the second viewing will bring what the first couldn’t. It’s designed to fight with.

The filmmaker in no way minimizes his preference for Beautiful is Afraid : “I would say it’s the film I’m most proud of. This is the best achievement I have made. I love this movie, and I sincerely hope people continue to discover it.”Unfortunately his preference follows a reverse curve to that of his films’ admissions in France. Indeed, Heredity had 176,739 entries in August 2018; Midsommar, 121,390 in November 2019 while Beautiful is Afraid reached a cumulative total of only 70,904 entries in June 2023 (via Allocinated).

It would seem that this fairly significant loss of speed is not a brake on the side bankable ofAri Aster since he is already in preparation for a fourth feature film, also with Joaquin Phoenix on display and this time in the western register.

A24 unveils the making-of of Beau is Afraid

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