Dave White
Insidious Review

Dave's Rating:


Polternormal Geistivity

Who's In It: Patrick Wilson, Rose Byrne, Lin Shaye, Barbara Hershey, Ty Simpkins

The Basics: Family moves into house. House makes noises and has some ghosts. Family moves out of house and into new house. New house makes noises and has the same ghosts. Family's kid winds up in a coma. And though the trailer and ads scream out that it's neither house that's haunted but is, in fact, the kid, you know that's not all there is to it or that would be the dumbest ad campaign of all time. And, obviously, there'll be no spoilers given away here, but the real secret is way more aggressively complicated, silly and--in spite of itself--jolting.

What's The Deal: I'm going to review this movie like it's two different films. That's because the first part is creepy, suspenseful, frightening and weird, the kind of thing that'll make you check all your closets and under your bed when you get home. It recycles all the best parts of Poltergeist and Paranormal Activity and energizes them with fresh dread and visuals you'll carry around in your head for a while. And then the the whole thing comes to a halt while a character explains what's going on. After that, it still has a couple of loud "gotcha" moments in its black box, but overall contains the same quantity of fear and panic as It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown.

How You'll Know When It's About To Unravel And Shrug Off Its Commitment To Actually Scaring You: When the two scruffy, bickering, deadpan, identically-dressed paranormal investigation-bros show up. Suddenly, it's like the filmmakers decided they wanted to make a mumblecore comedy instead. If you want, you could walk out then and not come back, preserving the mystery and the fright of it all. So keep that in mind, horror directors and screenwriters: nothing kills terror better than a pair of indie-rock-Mormon-missionary-looking ghostbusters.

Casting Ouch: I don't begrudge Barbara Hershey getting work, but she's way too famous for her small, pivotal role. You find yourself thinking, "Well, she's Barbara Hershey, so every single seemingly innocuous thing she says must be important or she wouldn't be saying it and then exiting the scene." And you would be right.

Don't Look In The Basement: Because that's probably where the creative team is storing their plans for Insidiouser and umpteen more sequels. It's not from the guys behind Paranormal and Saw for nothing.


Comments (25)

Fred - 4-01-2011 10:44 PM
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Are there any movies you do like since you tend to trash everything.

frank - 4-02-2011 1:55 PM
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ive read some negative reviews on this movie and im baffled, i went to see it last night and thought it was great..sure, its not the godfather, but what do u want from a horror movie? It had 3 or 4 of those jump back in your seat scares,the theatre was screaming...and the plot was decent enough even when it got twisted...seems to that its just hard to please people when there dishing out $12 now to see a movie on the big screen...just wait for it to come out on netflix and save your reviews...this movie is top notch, a must see for true horror fans

GORDO321 - 4-02-2011 4:19 PM
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seriously this is one of the scariest movies Ive seen in a long while. Im not kidding. Ive read all the bad reviews and usually when I do that I go in to the movie trying to nitpick and see what the reviewers were talking about, not this film. its to scary to do that. there was one point were all my hairs were standing on point. its a little boring the first 20 mins, but then it picks up and doesnt let down. great movie im going to go see again tonight with an other batch of friends. the reviewer doesnt know what hes talking about. insidious is insidious!

Ash - 4-02-2011 4:40 PM
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After all these reviews I've read, im definitely going to watch Insidious tonight.

MEEfO - 4-02-2011 4:53 PM
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gotta love all the planted reviews in the user comments here. This movie is not a must-see for true horror fans as someone said above. Even putting this in the category of true horror demonstrates what a lack of true horror experience this person has. Save your money, rent later.

frank - 4-02-2011 8:58 PM
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ok...what is good horror? the saw movies? where its just let me tie u up and kill u in a stranger way then last time...the final destinations? same as saw except they cheated it once...or one of the slasher type movies like halloween(the remake) or nightmare on elm street...this movie scares u without the blood or death by rat helmet...please tell me what real classic horror is meefo

GORDO321 - 4-03-2011 9:16 AM
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MEEfO does not know what hes talking about! go watch the movie you wont be dissapointed. this movie is great, great actors, good script. I love lin shaye! shes so cookey. Its a haunted house movie, not saw 9. I couldnt believe it was pg13 because the scares are really frightening. but alas no blood=greater thought put into the scares and movie. great, cant tell you enough great, if i Could just tattoo "Insidious is !@#$ awesome" on my face I would. if tattoos could be painlessly removed. hehe

Alondra - 4-03-2011 9:49 AM
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Okay, so the plot left tons of holes! First off: if we learned the kid can fly (by his drawings) why can't he escape? Why did he want to go to the Further in the first place when it is creepy as hell? I want to know the background stories on the ghosts. How did the little boy escape, etc etc? Are the other kids haunted? And many more. The story was a C because of meh writing (you think if I see a bloody handprint, I'm going to be calm and cool when my husband comes home?). However, if you don't think too much into it, the movie is scary as hell. I was freaking out. My boyfriend used me as a human shield, and I slept in his place just to feel safe. Everyone at the movies loved it and got totally scared. So the fear factor is A+.

Jake - 4-03-2011 12:16 PM
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Dave is a prick but he did get this one kinda right. it is almost 2 different movies the first half is really scary trust me. then the ghost hunters come in and it changes there is displaced humor in the movie. i say keep it scary the humor totally throws you for a loop i didn't like that aspect at all BUT the end i thought was awesome in the fact it gave you a face for the evil (which i thought it was less scary bc of that) but it gave you that Freddy cougar feel or something we have a bad guy to say shoot him instead of just being helplessly dragged down a hallway by nothing you cant fight. the scares were good the acting was good it was all round good and the makers tried there best to make even the small things like a seance different.

Phlames - 4-04-2011 10:38 AM
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This movie was great nice scary movie havent seen anything like it in years had every one jumping around at parts not from loud noise but actual fright!!

franzpatrick.com - 4-05-2011 4:10 PM
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Who says a horror movie has to be one-note? The more comedic moments were great tension relievers.

colten - 4-06-2011 1:00 PM
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I left the movie last night and still kept looking behind me to see if someone was following me. I had never seen any trailers or read any reviews for the movie prior to seeing it. I showed up, paid for my ticket and walked out scared and completely satisfied. If you want to see a good scary movie this year, do not miss this one.

joey parsons - 4-10-2011 12:08 AM
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The people who are paid to review movies for us usually hype up dead plot movies and give great movies lame reviews. let us review the movies and the end of the first viewing and then post quotes from us as a rating system. in my opinion this movie was f'n great. the best horror ive seen in a very long time. when over 90 percent of the theater jumps at the same time and it happened quite a few times. the directors other movies weren't crap compared to this one. someone needs to tell the critcs to get a clue. Cant wait to see it again.

Michael - 4-10-2011 6:52 PM
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I am mildly interested to see what this jack wad considers to be a good movie. I go to a movie to be entertained. And I'm not stupid enough to expect to see 'the best show ever' every time I go. Critics like this need a new job because they have forgotten what the pupose of movies are. Insidious is exactly what it was intended to be- a great movie and worth the ticket.

Chandler - 4-10-2011 7:10 PM
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Critics these days do not know what a good movie is. They all review movies on the same scale. This is a horror movie. The trailer promised me some scares and that's exactly what this movie delivered. On the other hand there are some scary movies that promise scares but don't deliver. This isn't one of those. Movies should all be reviewed on different scales. If it's a comedy and it's funny it should get a good review. See where i'm coming from? This movie did not promise me some inspirational life changing story. So it should't be reviewed on the same level as 127 hours or the king's Speech.

Thomas Lane - 4-12-2011 12:02 PM
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Have you ever seen a Mormon missionary with a beard? Maybe you were thinking Amish.

JS - 4-14-2011 10:02 AM
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I thought this was good! Suspenseful without being annoying--a tad creepy, too. Then..... there's the last five minutes...it let me down and I was not happy. I won't spoil it, but everyone I've talked to feels the same way about the ending. Just sayin.'

Jenny - 4-15-2011 9:15 AM
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Thanks for giving me a reason to roll my eyes. You've seen too many movies and become jaded. Either that or you're one of those people who just enjoys being acerbic about every movie you see in order to sound smart. It's become predictable to the point that it's not necessary to ever read your reviews. When I see any movie and wonder to myself, did Dave White like this film? I don't even have to turn on my computer to know the answer is no.

Joe - 4-16-2011 1:29 PM
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How can a professional critic not realize that the Ghostbuster dudes were supposed to be hilarious? Apparently you aren't very good at your job...

darkmatter - 4-25-2011 8:09 AM
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these horror movies just keep getting worse and worse. and better yet, noone who gave this horror movie good reviews is actually a horror fan. just a bunch of cheerleaders who scare and whimper at the sight of a mouse. if you do know what true horror movie is and you thought that the strangers was a waste of money then you deffinately dont want to waste your time watching this movie! sucks!

Speak-Easy - 4-26-2011 12:54 PM
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This movie is the scariest movie i ever saw and i saw movies like; It, Halloween and nightmare an elm street but this one the most terrifiling because it brung a new spin on horror movues just picture a woman talking some pills out of her mirror/cabinet in her bathroom and closes it and no ghost then pops the pills opens up the cabinet and still no ghost then turns around and open the bathroom door to leave and there goes the ghost trying to get along with the spooky music that sounds like a school teacher skeching on the chalkboard to get her class to pay attenion BEST MOVIE EVER!!!

AceBlackwell - 5-01-2011 7:23 PM
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Aric Thompson - 5-08-2011 1:26 PM
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I have to agree with Dave on this one. Once again, Trailer Hype and Cinema let down. It started out ok but took the predictable path as always. Build nemesis as terrifying and unstoppable then not know what to do with it to come to a climax. How is a demon more powerful outside it's realm where it's supposed to be it's weakest end up being slow and always one step behind in it's domain? I'm sorry but the Geek squad ghost busters were NOT funny and there was truly no need to try and inject humor in a horror flick at it's pivotal point. I understand we all have our scare thresholds but i think the general public would agree that this is another bad attempt that falls into the soon to forget pile.

Robert Paulsen - 7-14-2011 3:19 PM
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I like your review on Insidious, but I’ll have to respectfully disagree. I know this is an older post but I just had to say that I can’t wait to see this movie again because I give this movie 4 out of 5 stars. Personally I think that this is one of the best horror/suspense movies that have come out lately. If you haven’t seen it you definitely should. One way you can see it is by using Blockbuster Online. As a DISH Network customer and employee I can tell you that right now if you switch to DISH Network you can get Blockbuster Online FREE for 3 months! There are over 100,000 titles to choose from like Insidious, TV shows and games you can get through the mail. Plus you can get 5 in-store exchanges per month with no due dates or late fees. M

Smokey - 8-25-2011 5:19 AM
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I just netflixed this movie and agree with Dave's review. The first part of the movie scared the crap out of me but once the "mormon dressed ghostbusters" arrived the movie just got silly and lost it's momentum. I will say that the images from the first half of the movie definitely messed with my head as I went to bed last night so it's worth watching, but just remember that the ending leaves a lot to be desired.

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