I have been shaking with anticipation for this sequel to be released, and here it is! Hot off the presses, another piece of James Wan gold has hit theaters, and is as thrilling as ever. Now this review will be spoiler-ridden for those who haven’t seen the first film, so readers beware.
Picking up exactly where the first left off, with Elise(Lin Shaye) dead and Josh (Patrick Wilson) presumably possessed. Despite staying with her mother-in-law (Barbara Hershey), Renai (Rose Byrne) struggles with the idea that someone or thing may be controlling her husband, especially as more and more strange events happen around the house. Eventually, it is revealed that something in the house is commanding Josh to kill his family despite his protests.
Much like The Conjuring, director James Wan is able to build an amazingly believable world despite the less than believable events. The fact that everything is tied together so well makes up for the fantastical ideas and themes. The movie goes so far as to go back and explain events from the first chapter, events that at the time made no sense now click. If you’re going to make a sequel to a horror film, you really need to contact the development team for this movie. This is how a sequel is done. Not to mention that Wan’s technique of bring the scary is so well honed, that it could only be called “insidious”.
However, not everything was flawless. The film breaks off into a second storyline early on and switches back and forth between the two frequently. The second storyline also switches between a traditional stationary camera and well as handheld footage, which did not fit into the movie so well. And while found-footage can sometimes function on its own, when randomly integrated for only a short period of time, it can come across and jarring and just messy. Yes, there were times it was cleverly used, but that doesn’t mean it was a good idea.
Also, there was no music by Tiny Tim, and I think we can all agree that was the highlight of the first movie.
The movie leaves off on a note hinting at a third installment that I hope and pray will happen. With the resolution to the first movie, we never find out what happens to the red demon, only that Josh is able to escape him with his son. If the third movie happens, I could only imagine that it would be about the red-faced demon-who he is, what he wants, and how he can finally be stopped. After all, the film was called Chapter 2…that kind of sounds like an unfinished story to me!
The Insidious franchise has got to be one of the most well done horror movie series is a long time, using no cheap scares and done in such a subtle way that it’s almost hard to guess when the scare is going to happen. If you’re looking for an actually thrilling couple of movies, Insidious is the place to start.