Thursday 12 September 2013

Review: Insidious (second-pass)

World of Blackout Film Review

Insidious Poster

Insidious (second-pass)
Cert: 15 / 102 mins / Dir. James Wan

Now... I originally reviewed Insidious back at its time of release, and not particularly favourably. While I stand by my criticisms of how the film was made, I do have to admit that it's stayed with me. If anything, it's become the benchmark by which I measure haunted-family-horror movies; not because it's necessarily great, but because it sits squarely in the middle ground, gliding in some areas and grating in others. The sad fact*1 is that most horror movies which hit have hit the cinema since, have been crap in comparison to Insidious.

Anyway, my local showed a double-bill of the movie and its new sequel, and it seemed a bit rude not to, frankly.

In hindsight, I think I took this movie too seriously last (ie: first) time round. The title-card alone; bold red gothic letters in a flickering light, with a single shrill discord laid over the top, pretty much spells out what a campy-horror this is meant to be. Although the plot itself lapses into morose tension every so often, there's far more fun to be had once you know where everything's going, and the (apparently) derided Specs & Tucker are way funnier when you embrace that fun. I say 'apparently' because the audience I was with tonight loved them, too.

As a straight-out horror, Insidious is every bit as clockwork as I first judged it to be. But many of the jumps still work (if anything, prior knowledge of the film improves them), and the fleeting backstories of the myriad ghosts are told more effectively than in more recent films of the genre. But I still think Barbara Hershey is inherently terrifying in herself, and I still think that the director's input on the blackboard is cack-handed.

Better than I remembered, and worth the re-watch.
Next up: Insidious Chapter 2.

Insidious: Star Wars cameo of the year, 2011

Is the trailer representative of the film?
Pretty much.

Did I laugh, cry, gasp and sigh when I was supposed to?
More this time round, yes.

Does it achieve what it sets out to do?
Watching it again, yes.

Pay at the cinema, Rent on DVD or just wait for it to be on the telly?
Get it on DVD, if only to watch back to back with the sequel.

Will I think less of you if we disagree about how good/bad this film is?

Will I watch it again?
Most likely.

Is there a Wilhelm Scream?
Not that I heard. And there's ample opporunity.

And because you won't be happy until I've given it a score...

And my question for YOU is…
Which films have you returned to at a later date and enjoyed more?

*1 By which I mean opinion, obviously.

• ^^^ That's dry, British humour, and most likely sarcasm or facetiousness.
• Yen's blog contains harsh language and even harsher notions of propriety. Reader discretion is advised.
• This is a personal blog. The views and opinions expressed here represent my own thoughts (at the time of writing) and not those of the people, institutions or organisations that I may or may not be related with unless stated explicitly.

1 comment:

  1. INSIDIOUS horror number one on my list, first time visitor to your blog I am very impressed.
    thank you :)