Does Midsommar have a happy ending for Florence Pugh‘s Dani…or a tragic one? Has she finally found a community that can absorb and accept her grief…or is she trapped in a weird, murderous cult? Everyone has different readings for Ari Aster‘s Midsommar (I fall in the former), but one undeniable fact is that Dani’s climactic breakdown, in which she witnesses a terrible thing involving her boyfriend Christian (Jack Reynor) and falls into a collective bout of weeping and wailing with the other women of the commune, is the most striking, harrowing, enduring scene of the movie. It’s one of Pugh’s greatest acting achievements thus far, and one that the actress gave a behind-the-scenes glimpse of in her latest Instagram post in which she pays tribute to her fellow actresses in the scene.

“On this film, in this scene, I found a true sisterhood,” Pugh wrote in an emotional tribute to the Midsommar crying scene. Pugh posted a behind-the-scenes photo of herself and her co-stars recovering from shooting the emotionally grueling scene on Instagram, writing, “I remember the first take being so long, much longer than is displayed in the film that you all watched. When Ari said cut, we all clung on to each other’s arms and dug our nails into each other’s palms and wept. Sobbed. Heaved. I remember it being really hard to stop.”

In the scene, Pugh’s Dani had just witnessed her boyfriend Christian cheating on her by being part of a ritualistic orgy. She falls to the ground weeping and is soon surrounded by the other women of the commune, who begin to wail and weep with her in tandem. It’s a harrowing, some (and by that I mean me) would say cathartic scene, in which Dani’s grief and trauma is shared by the other women, which Pugh reveals was part of the process in performing the scene, leading to her forming an inseparable bond with her co-stars. She writes:

“Truly, these women made this scene possible. It was TERRIFYING. As terrifying as it was to watch, it was to read and know we had to do it. I love these girls so much. I’m not a big crier, so going through that with them was true safely and love and respect. It only happened because I had them.”

We all looked at each other before we started rolling and knew it would be hard. And awkward. And strange. And unnatural. We knew it wouldn’t be pleasurable. But by the end we would roll in each other’s laps and cry and allow our bodies to keep heaving.”

It’s a rare insight into the actor’s process, especially one as emotionally brutal as this scene. But Pugh has always been a very open and candid celebrity, which is part of the reason for her minor Instagram stardom. It’s nice, too, to see Pugh pay tribute to the other actresses in this scene, who are essential to the moment for which Pugh has been so heavily praised.

“I documented this moment because I knew I probably wouldn’t see all these women like this again. Even more worryingly, I may never work like this or see these women again…I may find these talented women on another film set, but as much as I wish that, that only rarely happens. But I knew I would never be so open and so raw and so exhausted like I was that day ever again,” Pugh wrote.

Midsommar is now streaming on Amazon Prime Video. You can see Pugh next in Olivia Wilde’s Don’t Worry Darling.

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