(Re-post of April6th, 2011 post)
Insidious is the latest horror from director James Wan of ‘Saw’. It stars Patrick Wilson and Rose Byrne as a couple who are settling in to family life. They move in to a new home with their three sons, but soon their eldest falls in to an unexplained coma and weird things start to go down.
Rose Byrne hits a certain point in the film after which she is essentially in a delirium. There’s only so much scary face one can pull before their character just loses all colour. Whilst Patrick Wilson acts as the mostly dim whited realist naysayer, though this is explained.
This is a genuinely frightening film and I haven’t been scared like this in a good while. It has all the hall marks of other horrors but greatly refined. Visually it is terrifying, which I found myself to thoroughly enjoy. I rather like to see my ghosts as opposed to a rattling table. As with any horror it’s like a waiting game with a certain rule set, James Wan plays out all the scares brilliantly and actually left me smiling at the anticipation of what was going to occur next. The build up at the beginning is rather slow, to set up a false sense of calm, but once things hit the fan it just goes full steam from there on. It doesn’t limit itself to just dark night time scares, as most horror usually occurs, but pretty much sets it up at any point, which is incredibly unnerving. I also thought the steampunkeqsue of the gadgetry involved in the ghost hunting was a nice touch.
If the scare factor of a film was measured in terms of how far one has retreated in to the cinema seat, then the lady sat next to me must of loved it. She was huddled in a ball by the end of the film.
Insidious is just down right creepy and a good nod to how horror should be done. It sets the mark for a good scare and will definitely be making the rounds come Halloween. It doesn’t leave you with a sense of being ripped off with no reveal à la Blair Witch and Paranormal activity, but is more akin to Drag Me To Hell and Evil Dead in terms of pacing and outright horror. You won’t be able to look at a family photo in the same way again!
Movie Rating: 4/5