We were huge fans of the first Insidious film but, unfortunately, last night we discovered that for the sequel the filmmakers decided to take some kind of dissociative psychedelic drug while writing the script.
The opening scene is unspeakably boring. Characters discuss the paranormal as though they’re in an episode of Are You Afraid Of The Dark; they end up playing a game of ‘hot or cold’ to find something in the closet for God’s sake.
But our bigger complaint is that it’s just a boring, stale opening that was ‘all tell, no show’. It completed stunted our ability to enjoy this film. Incredibly, a short time later the film somehow manages to find a reason to show this boring ‘all tell, no show’ scene again, as one of the characters had videotaped it.
Now the Tucker and Specs duo are watching it. Even they seem bored. They look like they want to turn to one another and say, “We are mindless pawns in a horror movie.”
All horror movies use gags and stunts to generate ‘scares’. Of course, that’s expected. God forbid you develop an organically good horror film in which the scares arise from the complex convergence of plot, character, and human emotion. No, just throw the baby’s exersaucer around.
No really, Insidious 2 uses the baby’s flashing exersaucer crib as a scare three times in the first 30 minutes of the film. In fact, one Ghost Diary writer was commenting to another about how they had already used the exersaucer twice when the third instance occurred.
From a film critique point of view, the worst part of Insidious 2 is the complete lack of character motivation. Patrick Wilson’s character (I don’t even care to look up the name on IMDB, I’m already annoyed enough that I’m spending my Saturday writing this) doesn’t even seem to remember that he just escaped from a horrifying paranormal dimension known as the Further. In fact, he remarks to his wife something to the effect of ‘wanting their lives to go back to normal.’
It just doesn’t seem like the kind of thing a father would say a few days after rescuing his son from an inter-dimensional demon. It kind of makes the character feel like–I dunno–the artificial creation of a screenwriter on a dissociative psychedelic drug given to him by a man in a suit.
Insidious 2 is pure camp–most of the eruptions in the theater we attended arose from moments intended to be scary that were actually funny. Usually we like camp, but this felt like insidiously calculated camp. Like the filmmakers were aiming for schlock in order to be hip and profitable. Indeed, the film runs through every movie cliche known to man as though it were a military exercise conducted by grinning toddlers.
The scariest part of Insidious 2 is how much money it’s going to make at the box office.