Stefanie Scott, Lin Shaye, Dermot Mulroney, Michael MacKay
Directed by Leigh Whannell
Sequels don’t usually have a good reputation but Insidious: Chapter 3 was just as good, if not more terrifying, than the previous chapters.
Chapter 3 held up on its own as a prequel to the Lambert family’s supernatural haunting. I could argue that this might possibly be the best out of the three movies. You don’t have to be familiar with the first two chapters to follow this movie, though it helps. Elise is back (though a few years younger) and kicking butt as she faces her fear of going into the “other” after she is threatened by the bride in black. Every time she enters this world the bride follows her and interrupts whatever connection Elise is trying to make.
In this chapter, the movie follows a high school graduate by the name of Quinn (Scott). She contacts Elise (Shaye), a medium, to help her reach out to her recently deceased mother. Elise is weary of summoning any spirit after a few bad experiences of contacting the dead, and warns Quinn that evil spirits can hear her calling out to loved ones. In this case, an evil demon has attached itself to half of Quinn’s soul and her father has to rely on the help of ghost specialists to get rid of it.
The whole movie keeps you in suspense. Chapter 3 takes you on an emotional journey from Elise talking about her dead husband to watching Quinn’s possession by a demon. There are lots of jump scares but it’s done right so it doesn’t feel cheesy. There’s moments when you know what’s coming but you have to watch behind your fingers anyway so you don’t miss out. One example of this is the feeling of being trapped. Quinn breaks both of her legs in a car accident and it leaves her stranded on her bed. When she sees the demon come after her, walking slowly towards her, it is a truly terrifying moment. She’s helpless and scared, and it makes the fear all too apparent when you know she can’t escape.
This chapter also follows the theme of the previous movies. There’s the red door into the “other”, which is a cool way to see how they play with the color red. The composition plays a big role too. The beginning of the movie starts out slow and quiet, but when the movie title pops out in red letters a screeching, horrifying tune is played. It puts thrill in your heart just before the story plays out. Another aspect to the suspense is hearing the rattled, dragged out breaths of the demon. It makes you feel suffocated watching this movie, like you can’t breathe.
Elise’s character has a big role and is fleshed out more. Viewers get to know who she is and her motivation to help those in danger of being possessed by demons. She’s a strong lead character who continues to fight against everyone’s worst fear of those evil things that live in the dark. There are a few sad moments as Elise reflects on her husband’s death and how she didn’t get to say goodbye. She can sympathize with Quinn who wants to feel comforted by her mother.
Overall Insidious:Chapter 3 delivers horror by providing suspense and a terror that no one wants to keep their eyes open for the whole movie.