This is another example of a perfectly good horror film receiving a modern update, by stripping away everything that was great about the original. It’s the equivalent of a pet cat chewing the innards of a small animal, before placing the body outside your door and expecting you to praise them. There wasn’t a single moment of this film that scared me, nor was there a single moment I enjoyed, it was just tedious and unimportant. And yet the mindless modern audience threw $47 million at it, like prisoners of war digging their own mass grave. Thanks for killing the genre.
I don’t care if people don’t have the patience to watch foreign cinema, because in this instance it means they’re missing out on one of the best horror films our generation has seen. This is a film that turns you on your head and spins you around so you have no idea what’s going on, and while this is happening it crawls under your skin to terrify the life out of you. Every single element is polished to perfection, it is a genuine masterclass in suspense that pieces together like a jigsaw to make a work of art.
It was nice to see an attempt at something different, but if I knew this film was going to slip back into the same formulaic nonsense most modern horror films stick to, I’d have been better off spending 123 minutes of my time bashing my head against a brick wall. What’s most frightening about this film is the shamefully bad writing. It’s like it set out to have a structured plot with character and depth, but then got too excited about the big twist, and proceeded to run into the woods giggling like a child, before urinating over its own feet.
I’m not sure I can actually rant about Insidious, because it would be like trying to have a rant about a fucking cardboard box. It is that boring and void of any distinctive characteristic that it’s actually difficult to get annoyed about it. To be honest I’d probably be more annoyed if I could actually remember more about the film, but the thing is that because the film is so tedious and pointless I don’t actually care that it exists. I don’t feel robbed of time, I just watched the film, ate a Twix and moved on with my life.
I was pleasantly surprised to find that this small budget, homegrown British horror flick was genuinely scary. And by scary I mean I was physically shaking by the time the end credits hit. The main body of the film is very well made, with enough jump scares and religious debates to keep audiences on their toes, but the last act of the film was just superb. It is a unique experience that I admire because it doesn’t attempt to offer an explanation or disprove religion, instead it offers minimal solitude in ambiguity, which made it thought-provoking and actually rather interesting.
I will always see this film as something of a resurrection, because before this film director and writer Neil Marshall was seen as something of a joke, having made Dog Soldiers just three years before. But then he made The Descent and proved that he’s capable of making a fantastic film on a relatively small budget. It is genuinely a really well made film that masters claustrophobic horror to the extreme. While most modern horror films are glossy Hollywood projects that are too clean, this film is gritty, it’s like dirt under your fingernails, yet strangely in a good way.
Without a doubt this is one of the best horror films of our time. Danny Boyle is a true artist and one of the best minds working in cinema, and this will always be one of his masterpieces. To call it a “zombie movie” as many tend to do does not do the film justice, because this is so much more than that. This is an intelligent piece of horror fiction with a beating heart, with character and substance, and most importantly it has a director who knows how to make a hauntingly beautiful film that is genuinely terrifying.
In comparison to the sequels this is the best of the worst, but it’s still a complete and utter mess. Not only are the acting and writing diabolical but the pacing is absurdly misjudged. It darts from tedious dialogue between people we don’t care about, to suddenly ramming exposition down our throats, before moving on to graphic violence that will please thirteen year olds staying up late at a sleepover. It’s unintelligent rubbish that feels like it was made by a film studies student, and co written by their weird friend who runs a graphic sexual fantasies page on Tumblr.
There is often the erroneous assumption made that I don’t like this film. However it’s not merely a case of me disliking it. I am overwhelmingly infuriated by its very existence. This badly made, tedious waste of time managed to influence a generation and completely change their definition of horror, thus they are now settling for cliché-ridden jump scare nonsense that isn’t actually scary. Sure it’s groundbreaking, in the sense that it helped lay the foundations of the steaming pile of shit that constitutes most modern horror cinema. If this film was a person I’d set its face on fire.
The general expectation for a horror film is that it’s going to be scary, correct? You can imagine my disappointment then, when the only reactions Oculus squeezed out of me were laughter during the main body of the film, and then a mixture of rolling my eyes and tutting on numerous occasions as plot details were revealed. It’s not only utter nonsense, but badly acted and unintelligent nonsense. If I’m honest I was actually rather angry upon finishing this film because it was a complete waste of time. Besides the ludicrous plot making me laugh, it has zero entertainment value.