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- Director: James Wan
- Release Date: April 2011
- Run Time: 102
Tagline: Insidious is Proof there is No Creative Life after Poltergeist
As I write I am reminded by one of Mel Gibson’s timeless lines from the film The Patriot (hey! Come on! It’s tax time!) where he tells the outraged Cornwallis that one of his men is a rather “cheeky fellow.” That of course is me as I self-censor in reaction to the film Insidious. Okay, first, here is some full disclosure: I am not a die-hard fan of Friday night freak out scream fright films. I am old school Dracula, Frankenstein and Wolfman aficionado to the morgue, er, grave. But I did love Poltergeist in its original entirety, from beginning to end. Truly.
Now, along comes Insidious (One? Probably.) a predictable tale of woe about a family with a creative parent who is involved in producing some kind of magnum opus of the tuneage or verbiage variety. They have enough cash to move into a big home just to complete the opus. And one of the parents, it never seems to matter whether it is mummy or daddy, is useless by and large while the genius distractedly tries to finish “the work” while the family is slowly dismembered, cast into the demonous inferno, or shocked into speechlessness and , to the extreme, bedwetting.
And what is it with families that give their kids two first names, James Robert, for first name and surname. Or the creative snooty types, they will give their kids two surnames to live with all their live, such as Cooper Millstone- or better yet, Millstone Cooper. Insidious’ mom, Renai (that’s Rene to all you peasants out there) and (old reliable crunchy granola type) Josh do just that, even naming one of the kids “Foster.” The stakes are high in keeping the parents alive. DOH! Did I give something away about the film? Okay. Deal- I won’t tell you the names of the cast. We can keep that a secret until the credits roll for you. That was close. It’s always a tradeoff.
Not all of this happens during Insidious, but the plot has been revealed while none of the gooey stuff is betrayed. Poltergeist demons make reappearance, at least in spirit (doh!), throughout the film hence my title. No new tricks. No new spooks. And don’t even think you will be swiftly pulling the bathroom door away from the wall before closing it behind you tonight. Insidious just doesn’t grab you and sweep you out into the garage with the lights off on a windy stormy night.
That is what I will gladly pay to see in a freak film in the middle of the day.