release date: 5 June 2015 (Canada)
run time: 97 mins
director: Leigh Whannell
starring: Dermot Mulroney, Stefanie Scott, Angus Sampson, Leigh Whannell, Lin Shaye, Tate Berney, Michael Reid MacKay, Steve Coulter, Corbett Tuck, Tom Fitzpatrick, Tom Gallop, Jeris Poindexter, Ele Keats, Phyllis Applegate
movie summary: A prequel set before the haunting of the Lambert family that reveals how gifted psychic Elise Rainier reluctantly agrees to use her ability to contact the dead in order to help a teenage girl who has been targeted by a dangerous supernatural entity. (www.imdb.com)
my thoughts: I really wish I knew why Hollywood continues to produce such horrible horror movies. I guess since I am asking that question, I might as well just ask myself why do I continue to spend money on such horrible horror movies. My money only continues to allow companies to write sequels and prequels that get major releases and avoid being a Netflix one hit wonder.
Despite what I think about horror movies in 2015, let’s be honest and look at the Insidious franchise as a whole. The first movie had a few creepy moments that could actually scare the audience as well as make their hair stand on end. The second film was a follow-up of the original and produced less drama and scary moments. I had hoped that sequel was the end, but instead the writers got together to pen a script that involves a little back story of Elise Rainier (Lin Shaye). It was a new twist about one of the franchise’s main characters, allowing us to get a deeper look into her abilities, previous life, and why she is so hesitate to help victims in the future. The saddest part about this angle of the story is it could have been so much better. Instead of actually allowing for the situation to play out and make us realise how impactful things were for Elise’s future, they focus on providing cheap thrills with creepy characters who wouldn’t scare a 10-year-old.
The man bad guy in the movie is Hollywood’s version of a smoker who just got cancer and now walks around with an oxygen tank. No offense to anyone who suffers from such an aliment, but if they wanted to be scary they could have gone a different direction. The trailer is completely misleading and tricks us into thinking this is an evil spirit that will mess with out victim, Quinn Brenner (Stefanie Scott). After an accident, she becomes an easy target for silly unbelievable things to happen to her, all the while dealing with some family drama involving her mom and dad. Once again the writers had great things to work with here but didn’t bother to do much. A few knocks on the wall, a cracked ceiling, and some muddy footprints is not enough to scare the only dog in the movie, let along a bunch of depressed humans.
Sadly I can’t think back to a moment through out the 97 mins of this film where I got scared. I don’t know if that says that today’s horror releases don’t have the same effect on me as old ones do or that I go into them with little to no expectations that I no longer get disappointed. I still love horror movies and just read that the Halloween series is getting a remake. I am super excited about that, on top of this summer’s release of Sinister 2. Hopefully someday, someone creates a horror movie like they used to in the late 1970s and 1980s.
my final thoughts: The Insidious franchise would have been so much more had it stayed just a two-part franchise. In an attempt to get more money out of us and force their hand to make a part four and part five, Insidious has turned into another version of Paranormal Activity. What I mean by that is a great idea gets so watered down that the next installment just becomes worse and worse. My advice is even if you enjoyed the first two films, you should save all your money and watch this on demand or Netflix someday, you are not missing anything on the big screen.
my star rating: 2 out 10
imdb: 6.6 out 10
rottentomatoes: 58% out 100%
roger ebert: 3 out 4
richard crouse: 2 out 5