Shannon Larkin, drummer of Godsmack, is on a roll with these horror reviews! We’ve had BD Selects’ Yellowbrickroad and the 70’s grindhouse exploitation flick Hobo With A Shotgun. Now, Shannon is back with a review for one of 2011’s biggest horror success stories, Insidious! Check out the exclusive review after the jump!
This is a ghost story that starts off with a creepy vibe, and maintains a dark, mysterious tone for the first half hour or so until we get a clue as to what is happening. Directed by James Wan (of Saw fame), this PG-13 thriller is nothing like the Saw franchise, as there is no blood or gore at all, and deals in the paranormal. That said, it is scary and well acted, and even while it moves a bit slow, the direction is good and Wan certainly knows how to film creepy sets and scenarios.
Josh (Patrick Wilson) and his wife Renai (Rose Byrne) move into a big old house with their three children (two young boys and an infant sister). The film is focused on Dalton (Ty Simpkins) who, after some strange ghost-like happenings, goes to sleep one night and simply doesn’t wake up. The doctors have no clue what caused this coma-like state, as all of his vitals and brain mechanics seem completely normal. The ghostly happenings (things being mysteriously moved around, doors slamming, phantoms being seen as shadows, etc) continue until Renai finally freaks out thinking the house is haunted, and demands they move out immediately. This happens after months have gone by, and personally, I would have moved out after a week! But alas, I would have been wrong also, as it turns out the house wasn’t what was haunted after all…
As things keep happening in the new house, and at the end of their rope, the parents hire a team of ghostbuster types, that feature a couple techies and a lady named Elise (the creepy Lin Shaye) who is a psychic that is a relative of Josh. We learn little Dalton, still in a comatose state, was actually a sleep traveler, that could leave his body at night to fly around in a sort of purgatory that coexists with other spirits that are not at rest, and want to live again. His spirit got lost and ended up being captured by a demon that wants to inhabit his human form to wreak havoc in the living world, hence his coma-like state. The demon must keep Dalton’s spirit from returning to his body for an indeterminate amount of time before it is strong enough to possess him. In the twist that brings it all together, we find out that Josh was also a sleep traveler when he was a young boy, but had repressed any memories of his own creepy experiences and now must learn to re-enter this spirit world to guide his son’s spirit back to his body.
All in all, if you like paranormal stories with creepy ghosts, you will enjoy this film, as it is well made and has a good climactic ending with a really messed up twist at the very end that is indeed shocking. More like Paranormal Activity than Saw, remaining old fashioned in its approach, this is a fun romp to ghostville. A lot like the definition of the title word: Insidious – proceeding in a gradual, subtle way, but with harmful effects. That about sums up the film. I liked it.
3 out of 5 stars. Will go in the collection.
Until the last time, Apocalypse!
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