Film & Television

John Maguire: Joaquin Phoenix’s new movie is equal parts hilarious and baffling

Beau is Afraid, from Midsommar director Ari Aster, is as likely to inspire deep affection as seething rage

Joaquin Phoenix in Beau Is Afraid: the film starts magnificently before deteriorating towards exhaustion

Beau is Afraid, the new film from Ari Aster, divided American critics last month and attracted as many brickbats as it did raves.

Bad notices are a new phenomenon for the acclaimed writer and director of Hereditary and Midsommar, but this split decision is entirely appropriate for a film of two halves, a comedy/horror about a man making a journey to visit his overbearing mother who is waylaid by a series of calamities.

It starts ...