Friday, October 10, 2014

Insidious: Chapter 2

(2013) *

Insidious: Chapter 2 begins in 1986 where psychic ‘medium’ Elise is called in to help discover who is haunting a young Josh Lambert. The ghost is portrayed as an old woman appearing in the background of photographs of Josh. Under a hypnotic state Josh reveals the location of the ghost (bedroom closet) and when Elise opens the door to the closet she is scratched by forces unseen.

Fast forward twenty-five years later and the film picks up where the original ended. Josh and his wife Renai are questioned by the police about the death of Elise (you might recall that she was killed by her husband when he was possessed by a ghost) and Josh decides to relocate his family to his mother’s sprawling Victorian home. Unfortunately the dark spirits are not done with the Lambert family just yet.

There is nothing "scary" in this movie.  All I see is someone chewing the scenary.

I must confess, when I stumbled across Insidious 2 on Netflix I mistakenly thought it was “Sinister” 2 (kind of like the time I signed up for a course in college called “Primate Behavior” because I misread the course title and I thought I was signing up for “Primitive Behavior”. I soon found myself following a squirrel for an hour as part of a homework assignment). I really liked Sinister and looked forward to more creepy home movies. Unfortunately I really hated Insidious (go ahead, watch it again and tell me that it doesn't suck big-time) and was immensely disappointed when I realized I was watching a sequel.

I really wish there was a Sinister 2 instead of the fake Sinister 2 I suffered through

My description of the film’s plot doesn’t begin to capture how convoluted story the gets. I had difficulty following it and on more than one occasion I had to check Wikipedia to ensure that I was following the story correctly (I wasn’t). I’m not going to spend much time on this review. Here are a few things that grind my gears about this film:

This is an excerpt from my original insidious review,

“I was into Insidious for the first half of the film, I really was. The paranormal activity had all been done before but damnit, it still worked! Despite its small budget the film boasts some style and I liked the cheap scares of silence punctuated by loud musical jabs. I stopped liking Insidious the moment the ghost busters showed up, in particular the female, who for some reason just makes me want to smash her face.

I recognize that my hatred for the Elise character borders on the irrational.

I had actually forgotten that Elise died at the hands of her ghost-possessed husband during the conclusion of the original film. For a brief moment I was delighted, “Hooray, maybe this won’t be so bad!” Oh, it was so much worse. Elise comes back as a 'helpful' ghost! I don’t know what it is but this actresses' visage fills me with murderous rage (I know I’m acting irrational here).

My blood boils looking at this picture

Another thing that grinds my gears?

As noted above in my original Insidious review, “I liked the cheap scares of silence punctuated by loud musical jabs.” 

 In the sequel this is occurs about every 10 seconds. A review by Michael Sragow stated, “[Director] Wan underlines each shock with blaring music and sound effects. He once admitted, “What I like to do with the soundtrack is set you on edge with a really loud … atonal scratchy violin score, mixing with some really weird piano bangs and take that away and all of a sudden, you’re like, 'What just happened there?' ” Wan repeats that ploy ad nauseam. He inflates all his effects, aural and visual. Instead of a single creaking rocking horse, we get a whole row of them rocking so quickly they could be training for a derby.”

I realize my review is all over the place but the story is complicated and there is so much about it that annoyed me; terrible acting, bad FX, awful characters, and not a single scare to be found. I hope someone else watches this and tells me that I’m wrong, in fact I dare you. This guy won’t be watching the inevitable Insidious: Chapter 3. Bleech.


DCD said...

Dude - you're review is all over the place!

Kidding. I got that Elisa brings out some primitive behavior in you, that's for sure. Bummer it's a suck.

Landshark said...

I love this review! Still cracking up over Primate Behavior. Ha!

Catfreeek said...

Yeah the review obviously outdoes the movie. This is exactly why I have little faith in American horror and have been watching oodles of far superior foreign films.

Octopunk said...

I think a review that starts with you chasing a squirrel has a thematic right to be all over the place. I also love your Sinister 2 jab because it reminds me of Homer saying "not like that fake Saturday that almost got me fired!"

JPX said...

That Sinister 2 jab was an homage to Homer, good catch!

Trevor said...

Sinister 2 is supposed to come out next October. It has Shannon Sossamon in the lead. Remember her?

I love the review, but I also loved Insidious 1 and 2. I'm looking forward to part 3. The funny thing is, most of the reasons I liked it were the same reasons you disliked it. Except for the dislike of Elise - that one just seems like a personal vendetta.

Mr. AC said...

I do NOT accept your challenge. Thanks for vetting this horrid flick so others don't have to suffer through it.

AC said...

jpx, it sounds like someone designed this movie expertly and for no other reason than to piss you off!

Johnny Sweatpants said...

That's the problem with those innocuous names like "Sinister" and "Insidious". They're interchangeable. As I recall I liked Insidious (that's the one with the Tiny Tim song, right?) and thought that Sinister was mediocre.