Insidious Chapter 3 [MOVIE REVIEW]

The supposed final chapter to the Insidious franchise is the first installment that is not directed or co-written by James Wan and does not continue the storyline that started with 'Insidious' and concluded in 'Insidious Chapter 2'. Basically this is not a movie that should have been called 'Insidious Chapter 3' but that does not mean it can not still be a good movie. But is it?

This is Leigh Whannell's official directorial debut after having spent the last 11 years writing horror movies with James Wan including the original 'Saw' (which is a fantastic movie by the way), 'Dead Silence' and of course the first two Insidious movies. I generally enjoy his writing a lot, sure not all of it works but he is one of the few writers out there today who understands horror movies to at least some degree. The screenplay for 'Insidious Chapter 3' however is only servicable for the most part. I do not know if this is because of his directing but this is definitely one of his weaker scripts to date, characters are dropped left and right, several plot points barely go anywhere and for every clever and inventive scare - there are about five recycled jump scares. The only praise I can give the jump scares in this movie is at least they are never false and what I mean by that is there is never a jump scare were it is turns out to just be a cat. When Whannell employes a jump scare - it actually goes somewhere. However, most of them are just the exact same scare just set up a little bit different. He does manage to emulate Wan's directing style in the first two films pretty well though and I am interested in seeing him directing more stuff later down the line.

So many of the scares in the film feel surprisingly forced and sometimes not even necessary. There was nothing really scary in the film and thus nothing that will stick with you when it is over, when ever something 'scary' was happening there was not enough build up before it to really keep the audience on the edge of their seats. In the end, nothing stands out.

Lin Shaye completely carries this movie and even becomes a badass demon ass-kicker by the end. I do believe this is her best performance in the series and the movie would be nothing without her. The newcomer Stefanie Scott gives a decent performance and sells a lot of the scenes she is in, in fact the best part of the movie is the first act before the supernatural stuff really gets going and we just follow her doing her thing (in a subplot that goes nowhere and just makes you wonder why they even included it as it barely does anything to develop her character). Leigh Whannell and Angus Sampson returns as Specs and Tucker respectively and they definitely feel out of place in this movie, they are fun to watch but their inclusion is barely needed for this story and only feel shoehorned in just because they played a bigger part in the first two films. The father of the main character was all right but the three that really bugged me were the little brother and the two friends of the main character. Starting with the brother, his only contribution to the film was getting Specs and Tucker into the picture which I of course already mentioned was unnecessary to the story. The two friends are only in the first act of the film before getting dropped completely and are not even mentioned when the story gets going.

In my opinion, this is the weakest Insidious movie to date which is a shame as it could have been really good since it did not follow up on the storyline the first two movies had and could just be its own standalone horror movie. It is just a shame that the story we did get is not very interesting and does not offer a lot of new scares. As a whole it just ends up being very forgettable and will hardly be remembered as fondly as the first 'Insidious'.


- Lucas


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