Insidious Movie Review
INSIDIOUS: SOLID GHOST STORY
The guys behind the Paranormal Activity movies and Saw bring a couple haunted by spirits in Insidious. All the usual tactics make you jump: whispering voices, moving doors, and what is it about a grandfather clock that puts people on edge? It is not a completely original story but it still entertains and may induce nightmares.
Josh (Patrick Wilson) and Renai (Rose Byrne) Lambert have just moved into a new home with their two boys Dalton (Ty Simpkins) and Foster (Andrew Astor) and baby Callie. Josh is a teacher and Renai is a music writer. When Dalton hurts himself in the attic one day, they become concerned but put him to bed, thinking a good night's sleep will help. But he doesn't wake up the next morning and doctors don't know what's wrong. When they bring him home 3 months later, weird things start to happen. Renai hears voices on the baby monitor, objects move on their own. And when she sees children running in the house in addition to a dark haired man, she's convinced the house is haunted.
Horror movies have become more gross out films over recent years. With Paranormal Activity guys Oren Peli and Steven Schneider, instead of using blood, they used early morning hours, a video camera, and an unknown entity. This is because they realize what you can't see is much more terrifying that what you can. With Insidious, they do a little bit of the same. Doors opening and closing, books being knocked over, and whispering voices with no explanation. They all set a chilling tone. Patrick Wilson and Rose Byrne give subtle performances as the tortured couple. Byrne has a wild look in her eye, conveying how on edge she really is. Wilson is frustrated, as if something is holding him back. And there is reasoning behind it. Older houses, grandfather clocks, and small giggly children running around in turn of the century clothing. They all invoke panic. Insidious was shot in suburban Los Angeles inside and out of a Craftsman style house first and then a Tudor style. Each house makes one wistful of the days when every house didn't look the same.
Insidious captures your attention in the moment but leaves you feeling suckered for falling for the same tricks afterwards.
Insidious starts with a sound premise and builds from there. Rose Byrne and Patrick Wilson give depth to their distressed couple while subtle ghost story maneuvers bring scary fun.