Warning: SPOILERS for Midsommar ahead!
Unlike many tentpole blockbusters, the horror genre is not known for producing 2+ hour films. That makes Ari Aster’s wild new horror flick Midsommar something of an anomaly. Midsommar clocks in at a whopping 2 hours and 27 minutes, but it turns out it could have been even longer with all the footage left on the cutting room floor. Fortunately, not all that footage will go unseen for long, because Ari Aster is putting together a director’s cut of the film, as he explained:
Ari Aster’s reveal of a future director’s cut of Midsommar came in response to a fan question during a Reddit AMA. Not only is the director working on an extended cut of the film, but it won’t be one of those piddling director’s cuts with just a few minutes of deleted scenes either; he’s anticipating that it will be at least a half an hour longer.
If you’re wondering where Ari Aster got the 1 hour 20 minutes he mentioned from, the director previously spoke to GameSpot and said that his original cut of Midsommar was an epic 3 hours and 45 minutes. So if you do the math, he cut 78 minutes or roughly an hour twenty, from the theatrical version of the film. He won’t be reincorporating all of that into his extended cut, but a half-hour plus is significant.
The question now obviously is: what was cut from Midsommar and what will be put back in for this director’s cut of the film? We’ll mostly have to speculate, but Ari Aster did tell GameSpot that one of the scenes that was excised for the theatrical cut came in the middle of the film and involved a huge fight between Florence Pugh’s Dani and Jack Reynor’s Christian.
The director said he never could have imagined that he would cut this scene until he did, so the extended cut presumably gives him an opportunity to put it back. I can definitely see where a scene like that would be beneficial. Dani and Christian’s relationship throughout the film is strained but for me personally, I think seeing a real contentious fight between the girlfriend and boyfriend could add to the arc of their relationship and would help enforce Dani’s decision at the end of the film.
A director’s cut could also give us greater insight into the world of the film and the mythology at play. Maybe we’ll get even more of the horrific and nauseating rituals performed by the cult. The real question is whether or not audience members can withstand another half an hour or more of seeing what goes on inside Ari Aster’s head.
Ari Aster didn’t offer any details about his plans for the director’s cut of Midsommar like when or how we can see it. If he’s working on it now perhaps it will be included on the film’s eventual Blu-ray release. That would be great for horror fans that don’t want to spend 3+ hours in the theater and prefer to immerse themselves in the barbarity of Ari Aster’s daylight horror, from the comfort and safety of a darkened living room.
Midsommar is now playing. Check out our 2019 Release Schedule to keep track of the biggest movies still to come this year.