Movie Review- Insidious 2

The first installment of Insidious was unimpressive. James Wan and Leigh Whannell are an incredibly creative and talented team. Insidious was lacking because it failed to show their creativity. Instead, it was dull and formulaic, much like other supernatural horror movies of recent years. The only interesting part was the use of astral projection and the concept of the further instead the over-used haunted house.

Insidious 2 was a completely different experience. Though still failing to be very frightening, the plot was much more involving. The characters were also a lot more likable than the first movie. Insidious 2 took the time to develop their personalities much more than the first movie did.

Here’s the bad stuff first:

1)   There were many scenes that were superfluous. It felt as though they could have cut down the movie a whole lot. Some scenes seemed to be thrown in just for the purpose of a scare, but they did not help develop the plot at all. An example of this can be seen in the trailer. A man is standing in front of the main character, Josh (Patrick Wilson), repeating, “He’s got your baby!” In the film, this part served no purpose. Also, there is no reason why Josh would not have been able to see the man in front of him. This scene takes place in the further where one can see the dead. So not only was the scene unnecessary, but it was not well thought out. Visually, it was very interesting, but needed to be considered more carefully in terms of the story.

2)   The movie did a lot of cutting back and forth between two groups of people. One group was helping further the plot and the other group was basically sitting around the house… not helping the plot advance. This problem ties into the superfluous scenes issue. Because the film kept cutting between these two groups, the plot got a little convoluted at some points.

3)   Something that might throw one off is how similar the character Renai (Rose Byrne) looks to Josh’s mother, Lorraine (Barbara Hershey). There were points during the movie that became a little confusing because of this.

The good stuff:

1)   This film was creative and refreshing in the way that it expanded upon the world it created in the first movie. The further is further explored in Insidious 2. The viewer learns more about the things one can do in the further. This blending of horror and fantasy made the movie different from the typical supernatural horror film.

2)   The twist at the end was one that could be expected of James Wan and Leigh Whannell.

3)   Compared to the first movie, there was a lot more creativity in the way the set was lit, the camera angles, and the overall atmosphere.

4)   The villain in this movie is definitely a tip-of-the hat to a classic horror movie serial killer. This made the villain interesting in the sense that they were very much like this classic killer, but put in a very different situation.

Overall, this movie is a 4 out of 5 stars. It has a few issues, but is generally a very entertaining and involving movie.