Wednesday, October 05, 2011

31 Days of Halloween - Day 5 - Movie

I really wanted to like Insidious (2010). I've heard a lot of praise for it. I like Rose Byrne. I read an interview with the writer and the director which made me think that I'd really enjoy this. Haunted House movies are my favorite subgenre of horror. I'd even saved watching it for this countdown expecting it to be my favorite find of the season. In the end though I just found it to be okay.

I'm not going to go into detail with the plot because it's the sort of movie that works best the less you know about it. I've heard it compared to Poltergeist (1982), which is pretty fair in terms of the overall plot of the movie; average family moves into a house, strange unexplainable things start to happen, something unnatural happens to one of the children, paranormal investigators come in, one of the parents must face down the paranormal threat and save the child.

The movie does have its moments, but I found the movie to be tedious for long stretches, punctuated by a string of scenes which would get my hopes up, then more tedium, repeat cycle. Part of the problem is that the family, instead of being the average family the viewer can relate to, are instead pretty blank cyphers, particularly the father. I didn't even care about the kids enough to worry about them being in jeopardy. Poltergeist succeeded because we really got to know the Freelings. The ghosts were also fairly generic and boring, and the big threat which had an eerie presence when first introduced seemed almost laughable as the movie progressed. The climactic rescue of the child by the parent was incredibly dull leading up to a predictable ending.

You can tell that the filmmakers really wanted to make a great horror movie that would one day become a classic, and I give them a lot of credit for trying, but this isn't that movie.



Michael Jones said...

I yawned my way through Paranormal and certainly won't watch its sequel once it arrives over here. Thanks for saving me from Insidious. To me the best thing about that movie would be its title.

Belle Dee said...

I've been hearing mixed things about this movie. I might check it out if it comes on the Netflix, just to see.

John Rozum said...

Michael - I thought Paranormal Activity was really bad. It did nothing for me.

Belle - I have a high tolerance, and willingness to like this kind of movie. Haunted House films are kind of like comfort food for me, but this one, except for a few moments, really bored me. It was not inventive at all. I'd be curious to hear what you think of it if you do watch it.

Belle Dee said...

I also want to comment that every time I see that photo, I think it's Darth Maul

John Rozum said...

It looks even goofier as the movie goes, but yeah, I thought the same thing.