For me, nothing beats a classic horror/thriller movie like Psycho or the Shining; more recently the Cabin in the Woods. There’s always fun when watching a movie with a good fright factor, where the tension builds and boils over to a jump or a shriek. Now, I’m not a huge fan of horror or thriller. This movie justifies why that is. From the creator of Saw, James Wan brings us another typical horror movie. Insidious is too predictable for me to have fun watching it. The movie stars Patrick Wilson (Watchmen) and Rose Byrne (X-Men: First Class).
But alas, I venture onward, into the further.
The movie starts like any other horror movie. Family moves into a new house looking for a fresh start, hoping things will be different. Obviously, things will be the same. The movie begins to set up the strangeness of the house. Things happen to Renai (Byrne) while she is home with the baby. For instance, she checks out the attic, breaks the ladder turning on a light. This broken ladder is what sets up the entirety of the movie. Dalton (played by Ty Simpkins) uses the ladder later that night, steps on the broken rung, and falls, hits his head. He’s alright. But the next morning he doesn’t wake up. He’s comatose.
For whatever reason it’s now three months later. Dalton, is still in a coma. Thus far, the plot still has not been fully introduced, yet it starts to come together. One night, while Josh (Wilson) and Renai are getting settled into bed, there is a knock on the door, and another. Josh goes to check it out, but finds no one there. Jump cut to Renai getting out of bed to tend to the crying baby. Scares ensue. The house alarm goes off, creating more tension. Josh runs down to see an open door. Checks the house out, finds nothing. Jump to the next day, Josh is at work, he has a dream of what appears to be a child, laying in bed, motionless. Doesn’t appear to be Dalton. Who can it be then? Spoilers.
In this same scene there is a nice, not so subtle nod to Wan’s first film, his pride and joy, if you will – Saw.
Not even halfway through the movie, the family decides that they need to move to another house. That doing this will solve their problems. But, yet again. It does not. In this house, some more horror movie shenanigans start to happen. Josh and Renai, sit at the table with Josh’s mother, she describes what she believes is happening. More of the horror movie formula at work here. Frightful things happen. This is where we are introduced to a new band of characters, someone from Josh’s past. Elise (Lin Shaye). She begins to describe what she feels is in the house. Later, they perform some sort of horror movie voodoo, a seance. Scary things happen, as they do when you start to mess with things that ought not to be messed with.
We then learn about, what is referred to, as The Further. This is where Dalton is stuck.
Now, I’m not going to spoil the movie, this is where somethings start to make sense. But very slightly do they make sense.
There isn’t a whole lot to say about Insidious. The plot is very cut and dry. For me, this is nothing more then a cookie cutter horror movie. Tension is built in places, it breaks, you jump. Rinse and repeat. The acting isn’t terrible. Wilson and Byrne both had passable performances. Take this movie for what it is. Almost two hours of sub-par horror, with little thrills.
The movie ends, with a lot of unanswered questions. Which can only mean sequel. Hopefully, this time around we get answers.