Good, Bad & Ugly Review: Insidious Chapter 2

Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 37% (Critics) / 72% (Audience)
Directed By: James Wan
Written By: Leigh Whannell and James Wan
Starring: Patrick Wilson, Rose Byrne, Barbara Hershey and Lin Shaye
Studio: FilmDistrict

Synopsis:The famed horror team of director James Wan and writer Leigh Whannell reunite with the original cast of Patrick Wilson, Rose Byrne, Lin Shaye and Ty Simpkins in INSIDIOUS: CHAPTER 2, a terrifying sequel to the acclaimed horror film, which follows the haunted Lambert family as they seek to uncover the mysterious childhood secret that has left them dangerously connected to the spirit world. (Source)

The Good:
James Wan is really good at making horror movies. he has a very nice touch as a director that is not heavy-handed or derivative. he does really cool things with changing POVs and different camera angles that helps to increase the uneasy vibe of his movies. And this one has many uneasy moments, that while not jump out of your seat scary, do serve to create a nice spooky aura throughout the entire film. I also enjoyed how Wan connected this film with the first one so that scenes from the original film were enhanced by the audience seeing what actually was going on to cause some of the events in that movie by what characters did in this one.
Rose Byrne seemed to be doing her best Shelley Duvall in THE SHINING impression. If you closed your eyes you would have thought she was in the Overlook Hotel running from Jack Nicholson.
Lin Shaye was once again one of my favorite parts of this movie just as she was my favorite part of the first one. I would be perfectly happy to have an entire franchise built around her ghostly paranormal investigator character, Elise Rainier. She’s like that awesome aunt that let’s you do whatever you want but who also cavorts with ghosts and demons.
But the absolute best thing about INSIDIOUS CHAPTER 2 is the over-the-top performance by Danielle Bisutti as a whacked out ghost in the best scenery chewing I have seen in a horror movie since Aunt Martha from SLEEPAWAY CAMP. She is a campy delight.

The Bad:
I like Patrick Wilson and consider him to be a really good actor (his performance in LITTLE CHILDREN is outstanding) but the guy seemed to be phoning in every second of his performance in this movie. It was like the challenge of playing a possessed character was a bit too much for him so instead of going overboard and giving a big performance he went too far in the other direction and was just completely restrained. He should have taken some cues from co-star Danielle Bisutti and ate some of the scenery.
There were also some bumps in the road as the film tried to establish a backstory for the villain of the film that is not nearly as interesting as the assumptions that I made about the character from the first film.

The Ugly:
That ending seemed like it was taped on at the last minute and then they ran out of time and budget so they had to skimp on the big “Oh Shit!” moment that I assume was supposed to happen. Didn’t like it all.

Final Verdict: A nice bookend to the INSIDIOUS franchise and a high note for director James Wan to go out on (he has stated this will be his final horror film) with some pretty inventive visuals and a good creepy vibe throughout. There were some issues I had with the film but they were minor enough to not distract from the enjoyable parts.

Rating: B-


  1. simondaniel27 · September 14, 2013

    I definitely agree about the ending. The end scene wasn’t even necessary!


    • Derek · September 14, 2013

      Yeah I even asked the usher at the theater if there was an after credits sequence but he told me there wasn’t. I was going to sit there till the lights came on in the theater because that ending felt so incomplete.


  2. Parlor of Horror · September 14, 2013

    37% critics – 72% audience, now that’s how a horror movie should fare in the market. It scares me when critics like something – it usually means I will hate it. Anyways, going to see this during the week 😀


    • Derek · September 14, 2013

      I get really wary when the critics love a genre film while fan response is either mixed or negative. Most times if a critic loves a horror movie it is because it bares very little resemblance to an actual horror movie.


      • Parlor of Horror · September 15, 2013

        exactly. like every critic will list Rosemary’s Baby in their top 5 horror movies. to me it’s okay, but barely a horror movie until the end.


      • Derek · September 23, 2013

        I still look at Rosemary’s Baby as being more of a psychological thriller than a true horror film.


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