by Erin Malley
Cinematic history has proven that producing a quality horror movie is not an easy task. Between ketchup blood and overly melodramatic background music, these movies often turn out more humorous than frightening; Insidious: Chapter 3 is no exception. Contrary to the success of the past two Insidious films, the third installment is a disappointment to the franchise.
The movie opens with teenage Quinn Brenner, played by Stephanie Scott, reaching out to a psychic in an attempt to contact her deceased mother. Psychic Elise Rainier, played by Lin Shaye, is convinced by Quinn’s story and decides to attempt to connect her with the afterlife. Predictably, rather than finding Quinn’s mother, Elise encounters an evil spirit and warns Quinn to stop trying to contact the dead.
Upon returning from her reading with Elise, Quinn reaches out one last time to her mother, and as a result begins to notice signs of paranormal activity. Quinn soon discovers that the spirit is not her mother but a demon wanting to capture her soul. Quinn’s father Sean, played by Dermot Mulroney, strives to keep his only daughter from leaving him, too.
While the concept of the film is not terrible, the acting and poor effects degrade Insidious: Chapter 3 as a whole. Director Leigh Whannell attempts to make the film relatable by depicting Quinn as a stereotypical teenage girl; however, as a result, he establishes a corny and predictable protagonist. Scott appeared more convincing as a person under the control of a demon than as a typical 17-year-old. In addition, Whannell vaguely ties the plot to that of the previous two movies, yet is only successful in dragging out storylines that barely connect. Characters like Carl from Insidious: Chapter 2 reappear with no purpose to the ongoing storyline other than to confuse the audience.
In regards to scare factor, the movie relies entirely on intense music and faces popping out of dark rooms. Aside from a few jump scares, nothing about the film keeps the audience frightened. Even the film’s demons look computer-generated, lacking the authenticity of a good horror movie.
Undoubtedly, the worst part of the movie is its ending. The credits appeared following an unsatisfying cliffhanger, meaning the series would continue on. What I fear more than anything is having to sit through yet another Insidious chapter.