Customer Reviews


765 Reviews
5 star:
 (363)
4 star:
 (184)
3 star:
 (103)
2 star:
 (46)
1 star:
 (69)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favorable review
The most helpful critical review


242 of 265 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars scariest movie i ever saw!!
this is not a review per se (because i won't describe the plot or actors--you can search that on your own) but wanted to say this is a scary movie! not the stupid hollywood kind where a bunch of teens are knocked off one by one but a very quality, well-made horror movie with lots of spooky atmosphere (what producers and directors seem to miss every time and that's what...
Published on July 15, 2011 by D. Scoggins

versus
31 of 40 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Mixed Feelings
As the title implies, I have very mixed feelings about this movie. I didn't go into it with high expectations. I've learned not to do that with horror movies anymore. Especially ones that are touted as "the next [fill in the blank]." Once this movie got rolling, though, I became very excited. The first half was excellent. It was tense, atmospheric, and downright creepy. I...
Published on July 21, 2011 by Dominick Balsamo


‹ Previous | 1 277 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

242 of 265 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars scariest movie i ever saw!!, July 15, 2011
This review is from: Insidious (DVD)
this is not a review per se (because i won't describe the plot or actors--you can search that on your own) but wanted to say this is a scary movie! not the stupid hollywood kind where a bunch of teens are knocked off one by one but a very quality, well-made horror movie with lots of spooky atmosphere (what producers and directors seem to miss every time and that's what makes a scary movie). It has a haunted house, demon possession, astral progection, talented adult actors who aren't having sex and kissing all the time, and most of all the foggy spooky atmosphere that makes it scary. i have loved horror since the 60's and haven't seen too many good ones that really scare me except The Exorcist, Silence of the Lambs and some lesser known films. I actually had to turn all the lights on in the house after seeing this movie and i'm an old guy! Highly Recommended! Please make more like this one and stop with the teenagers being slashed BS. Thanks for reading!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


130 of 151 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Scariest movie I've seen in a long time - Very well done, May 12, 2011
This review is from: Insidious (DVD)
I know I'll get butchered by some for the title, but the tension in this film was stupendous. At all the right times, in all the right places, the scares and thrills are there. Sure, it's a hodge-podge of Poltergeist, Exorcist and Paranormal Activity, but each aspect of those movies is accentuated to produce a genuinely frightening combination.

After a family of five moves into a new home, it takes little time to realize something is wrong. Items move, doors close. When one child falls into a coma and the mother hears what sounds like Vin Diesel growling in some Gaelic dialect over the baby monitor, it's time to move despite the fact the father is a disbeliever. Unlike the Jefferson's, moving on up doesn't work for this family and the frights return like ghost herpes.

While creative license was necessary to move the story along, the astral plane concept is not completely embraceable. Nonetheless, the rest of the movie hits on all cylinders. Visually there isn't a lot, but what is presented works very effectively. All the scare techniques (e.g. eerie noises, well chosen music accompaniment, quiet-to-loud shocks, quick reveal scares) are expertly crafted and executed. Epic timing on more than one occasion. None of the actors really stand out, and a few (a Ghostbusters reproduction) were somewhat silly, but Lin Shaye must be recognized for her interesting performance as a medium who ties the entire movie into a sleep-stealing knot.

Impressed from beginning to end by this movie, I applaud the return to old fashioned, suspenseful horror that doesn't need a teenage sacrifice in a brothel, hostel, or abandoned building. Not saying I dislike those, but Insidious is good for the change of pace. The second half of the film is much slower than the terrifying first half, but if you've recently asked yourself, "Whatever happened to the slow build up?" Watch this in a dark theater with a great speaker system. Guaranteed thrills.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


34 of 39 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Spectacluar! The genre done right!, July 13, 2011
By 
This review is from: Insidious (DVD)
I saw this in a theater when it came out...I went to a late show, and there were only a couple of others in the theater. What an experience! Scared out of my mind and intrigued at the same time. I consider myself kind of a horror/sci-fi connoisseur, and in my opinion, this is an instant classic that will be a favorite for the rest of my life.

The music. If the music doesn't creep you out, you may not be alive at all. Screeching and wailing violins...all placed in just the right parts of the film. Not since Goldsmith's 'Alien' score has there been such a perfect horror soundtrack. And even the 'Tiny Tim' song strangely works just right.

The old lady in the window and the other 'spirits'. The old lady in the window is absolute nightmare fuel. That is the kind of ghost that kept me up at night as a child. There are a variety of menacing characters about as well. At least one of them is sure to get to you.

The story. The story is very creative and original. The story does explain just about everything that happens...which I found very refreshing. The actors played their roles well, and the film has a good flow to it. The film feels very polished and not hurried at all.

Buy this movie! Rent it! Watch it alone in the dark or with someone else during the day. Whatever you have do!!! See it! I wanted to go right back into the theater when it was over and watch it again! I even pre-ordered it as soon as I got home!!! All hail INSIDIOUS!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


60 of 72 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars See It In the Theater With Others If You Can!, April 8, 2011
By 
Mark (The City of Decatur, Georgia) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Insidious (DVD)
Very atmospheric, old-school '70's-ish first half is very effective. Gets almost unbearably tense at a nice pace with scary noises and a great plucky, screechy (real!) violin soundtrack.

My younger friend is jaded, you know, so he didn't like the malevolent creeps - but I thought they were great. For this particular movie, I think it needs an audience, in the theater, with the sound turned up nice and high.

The booms, fwomps, swooshes and other ambient noises help carry this movie into Horror-Land (except for the home alarm. Be ready to cover your ears. It's only briefly annoying, though).

I thought the analogy to a roller coaster ride or a Haunted House ride was appropriate. It certainly has it's moments, I tell you.

The second half got into Ghostbusters territory a little bit but the main characters - Dad, Mom, Grandother, two sons, and a baby girl that's a bit of a cryer - took their roles seriously, played them straight, and really pulled you into the story.

When the ersatz Ghostbusters show up, there's a bit of corny explaining but soon it's back into Scares-ville. The denouement and wrap-up isn't jumpy as the first half, but it's still weird enough to keep your attention.

"Insidious" is a crowd-pleaser - if you have crowd around you that loves to scream (and laugh afterwards, because the tension builds and builds and really gets to you so much that after a scare, it's hilarious).

I liked "Insidious" - a lot.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Insidious---CREEPY AS HELL!!!, July 22, 2011
This review is from: Insidious (Amazon Instant Video)
CREEPY AS HELL!!!!! Best horror film I have seen in a LONG time. The movie gave me the creeps and my first viewing of the DVD was in the afternoon!! It's good to see a movie come out with all of the creepiness and none of the gore. I rank it up there with The Sixth Sense and Ghost Story. I honestly wasn't expecting much with a PG13 rating, but I was very pleased---loved all of the spooks popping up here and there. A must-see that is destined to be a classic!!!!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best horror films I've seen, and I"ve seen tons!, July 11, 2012
By 
Monty Moonlight (Austin, TX, U.S.A.) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Insidious [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
The Lamberts are a typical young couple with three small children who have just moved into a beautiful new home. However, one of their little boys immediately becomes injured and falls into an apparent coma. Soon after, the family finds itself suffering from strange and terrifying occurrences. After the family moves in search of some peace, the events continue to occur. Mother-in-law is consulted and help is brought in, revealing a dark and insidious secret from Mr. Lambert's childhood that could be the key to saving his family today.

Wow, what can I say about this movie?! When I saw it in theaters last year, I was blown away. It was EXCELLENT, and I don't say that lightly. A throwback to the great, supernatural horror films like Amityville, Poltergeist, The Exorcist, The Entity, Rosemary's Baby, and The Shining, "Insidious" is a truly fascinating and scary film! In fact, it instantly and easily became one of my favorite horror films from the first time I saw it. If you're looking for proof that recent horror films aren't all bad, I've got three masterpieces for you, and this is one of them. The other two are "Cabin in the Woods" and "The Mist", but I digress.

A fine cast (including "The Entity" star Barbara Hershey) , some plot qualities we've never seen before, and some truly scary music and imagery make this film a cut above the rest, and I highly recommend it. Don't listen to nay-sayers who describe the ending as too open or the film's demon as too Darth Maul-esque. There is nothing but win here. The demon is freaky and the Tip Toe Through the Tulips scene, ugh! Try getting that song and its creepiness out of your head after seeing this for the first time! I only hope the upcoming "Sinister" is this good!

Now, the Blu-Ray bonus features are a bit underwhelming. There are 3 behind the scenes featurettes, that's pretty much it. They are good, but this film deserved so much more. However, if you love horror films, this movie belongs on your shelf, so I guess they get away with it this time. "Insidious" is a film you'll love introducing new people to all the time! Just don't watch it alone!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I think I just had 6 mild heart attacks in the last hour, February 29, 2012
By 
Christine L. Tuohy (Reno, NV United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Insidious (DVD)
Wow. Holy crap is this movie scary. Did you like Poltergeist when it first came out? This one is vaguely similar in plot, but much better, dare I say. You've undoubtedly read the basic plot from other reviews, so I'll skip to how this movie makes you feel. While watching it, when it gets to a point where the music is building and you just KNOW something is going to jump out and scare you? Well, somehow this movie manages to still frighten you to death even though you know it's coming. And there are ones you don't see coming, too.
The 'villian' as it were, in the end (without giving any spoiler alerts) is the type of monstrosity that makes me of all people, the atheist, think I'd better get my ass to church REAL soon. It's one twist after another, with a strong cast, and every creepy type of ghost you can think of all rolled into one movie. (you'll never be able to listen to Tiny Tim again either without getting creeped out, I guarantee) And it's not bloody or gory. It'll just mess with your head and make you very afraid of the dark.
The cool thing that I read on IMDB about it was that the writer sat at his desk writing this movie with a bulletin board of horror movie cliches in front of him, making sure he didn't hit any of the overused horror movie moments. Somehow, it worked. Last year, I did a Halloween scary movie marathon and watched a different movie every night in October. If I would've watched this one first, I would not have watched the other 29.
It will scare you. Really. Now if you'll excuse me, I have to go turn on every light in the house.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A creepy movie In the tradition of Poltergeist, July 16, 2011
By 
jce3 (Eau Claire, WI United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Insidious [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
I found this to be a sort of updated Poltergeist. While not a true reboot, it does have some of the same mix. A small child caught up in an unknown "otherworld", 2 parents and 2 siblings left to deal, a trio of experts to help the family out, and in the end a parent goes in to retrieve the child.
Now I'm sure others will question my analogy, but it's how I saw things.
As for the movie, it has a nice spooky element to it that sets the pace all the way through. Small things at first leading up to many more unexplained happenings. The scares were not in your face, although there were a few well placed got ya moments! Overall I enjoyed this movie and consider it one of the better horror movies to come out in recent years. I will be buying the blu ray version as it does have a few special features not on the DVD.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Scariest movie I've seen in a long time, July 14, 2011
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Insidious (Amazon Instant Video)
I haven't been spooked out by a horror movie in a very long time. I will have to buy this one eventually. It is in my top 5 scariest movies of all time. Great haunted/possession movie with good acting, script and directing.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


31 of 40 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Mixed Feelings, July 21, 2011
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Insidious (Amazon Instant Video)
As the title implies, I have very mixed feelings about this movie. I didn't go into it with high expectations. I've learned not to do that with horror movies anymore. Especially ones that are touted as "the next [fill in the blank]." Once this movie got rolling, though, I became very excited. The first half was excellent. It was tense, atmospheric, and downright creepy. I am, admittedly, a jaded old horror snob. I haven't been legitimately scared by a movie since I saw "The Exorcist" for the first time, when I was nine (and that was 22 years ago). On the same token, I also do not judge a horror movie by how "scary" it is. I judge it by the atmosphere presented and whether or not the writing and film-making capture and hold my attention. If the movie can get a few jumps out of me in the process, that's a fun plus... But it's not the sole criteria by which I evaluate a horror movie anymore. To his credit, James Wan really showed his chops as an editor and director in the first half of the movie. And Leigh Whannel seemed to have put together an excellent story that melded supernatural horror with very real horror (especially if you're a parent). The music also added a lot to the overall feel. It wasn't your standard synth drones that have become the hallmark of every horror flick made after 1970. They actually had real orchestral instruments, and some great dissonant violin that made my spine feel all twisty.

Yes, it was all very derivative. Overall, the first half of "Insidious" was basically a hybrid of "The Exorcist" and "Poltergeist," as many have already noted, and there were also elements of "Flowers in the Attic," which I have not seen noted... But it was so well executed that any unoriginality was forgivable. And, besides, if you're gonna rip *anyone* off, you may as well rip off the best! The first half of the movie presented believable characters in a scary situation that was made scary by what you didn't see or what you barely saw, and did not over-rely on rubber monsters or obvious CG effect that ultimately detract from the overall chill factor. It was a total throwback to classic horror movies, that had me on the edge of my seat with excitement. Not just excitement for what was happening on-screen, but excitement for the genre as a whole.

Then, about half way into the movie, Darth Maul made a guest appearance. Well, maybe not *actually* Darth Maul... But a "demon" that looked a lot like him. It was all downhill from there.

The latter half of the movie became a straight-up cartoon. All the great set-up and intensity that was established in the beginning was pushed over like a house of cards. It started with an out-of-place, overtly comedic pair of over-the-top nerdy ghost hunters (one of whom uses a modified ViewMaster to see ghosts... I s**t you not). When Lin Shaye's psychic character came into the picture, I had some hope. Lin is a veteran actress who really knows how to control the screen, and her character seemed interesting enough. She even flirted with the idea of sending her two ghost-goobers away, which made me think: "Ok. Cool. The comic relief was here to lighten the mood, so that we could be once again slapped-around with the horror stick when we were just getting comfortable." Alas, that was not the case, and this film's equivalent of Jar Jar Binks was in it for the long haul. (Wow! I'm really racking up the "Phantom Menace" references here, aren't I?)

The rest of the movie did the exact opposite of what the first half had established. It took all of the ghosts and brought them into the green-filtered light of day, in all of their overly-made-up glory. The whole thing took on an atmosphere similar to the yearly spookhouse that the local YMCA puts on for Halloween. But the thing that makes the spookhouse fun and scary is that you are actually in the middle of it, stumbling around in the dark and wondering who is going to pop out at you next. "Insidious" didn't have that same value, since it was just a guy on a screen stumbling around in the dark and the camera angles made it pretty obvious when and where someone was going to pop out at him. Frankly, it was boring. Now, don't get me wrong. The in-your-face monster atmosphere can work in a movie. It worked for the "Evil Dead" movies. It works in slasher movies. Heck, it even worked in the contemporary version of "Thirteen Ghosts." But the thing that made it work there is that the threat existed of the monsters actually *doing something* to the person whose face they are getting into. When monsters gets all up in your grill, they have to spew something, or attack, or try to swallow your soul, or something. The ghosts/monsters in "Insidious" basically just popped up in front of the hero, made a funny noise and an ooky face, then backed off. It was like a haunted game of Whack-a-Mole. Ultimately it came off as more silly than scary, and totally invalidated everything that the first half of the movie worked so hard to set up.

As for the ending: I won't spoil it, but I have mixed feelings about it too. On one hand, it made perfect sense given the way everything had been set up. On the other hand, it wasn't all that creative. Movies ending this way have become the standard for "edgy" horror in Western film-making, but haven't actually been "edgy" for about half a decade because it's what everybody does. It's often said that a bad ending can ruin a good movie, and a good ending can justify a bad movie. This movie proves that a mediocre ending keeps a movie mediocre.

Given their history together, I suspect that Wan and Whannel wanted to make a vastly different movie (they created the "Saw" franchise, after all), but the studio wanted a PG-13 horror movie, and so the writer and director toned it down accordingly. Unfortunately, the tone-down came across as a water-down. Honestly, if they had stuck to the format that they established in the beginning, and built it to a climax that way, this movie could have been great and nowhere near an R rating. "The Others" did this exceedingly well, back in 2001. Wan and Whannel obviously know how to make a good, unsettling, psychological horror movie. Maybe next time they'll be consistent about it.

Let's try to end this on a positive note. The first half of the movie was excellent. The music was great. I give props to the director for using human actors, lighting, and camera tricks to tell his story, and not falling back on crappy CG. The first half of the movie shows that there is still hope for the Hitchcock school of horror. And, even in her sixties, Barbara Hershey is still gorgeous. So, good going on all of that. On the whole, I give this 2.5 stars, out of 5. It had a boatload of potential, but sadly fell flat.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 277 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

Details

Insidious
Insidious by James Wan
Add to wishlist See buying options
Search these reviews only
Send us feedback How can we make Amazon Customer Reviews better for you? Let us know here.