REVIEW – Insidious (2011)

THE ZONE have my review of James Wan’s deliciously camp and thoroughly ridiculous Horror film Insidious.

Insidious is in some ways a remake of Oren Peli’s low-budget cult hit Paranormal Activity (2007) in that it is a story about a bunch of ghosts turning up and haunting an individual rather than a place.  As in Paranormal Activity, the hapless victims of the haunting contact some ‘experts’ only to discover that the situation is in fact far worse than they had imagined.  However, while Paranormal Activity made clever use of fixed cameras to make it look as though it had been shot by the victims themselves (an effect fatally undermined by the various special effects ‘added’ to the film for its UK cinematic release), Insidious moves right on past minimalist realism and into the realms of full bore gonzo:

Insidious is proof that Horror still has the power to entertain and to thrill without the need for 3D gimmickry, pointless nostalgia or needless deconstruction and that all you need to deliver a really effective work of cinematic Horror is a good crew and a talented director to guide them. You don’t even need a script. Or actors. Or ideas…

Warmly recommended for anyone who likes their Horror well-made but also a little bit silly. See also Jaume Collet-Serra’s Orphan a film that brings the awesome with devastating grace and efficiency.