A Review-Based Student Publication of Townsend Harris High School

The Classic Critic

A Review-Based Student Publication of Townsend Harris High School

The Classic Critic

A Review-Based Student Publication of Townsend Harris High School

The Classic Critic

Insidious: The Red Door, more comedy than horror?


Rating: 2/5 

The new addition to the Insidious series, Insidious: The Red Door, was an unfortunate letdown. Being a new viewer of Insidious, this movie made me question watching their prior films. The plot was simplistic and lacked intriguing aspects to keep me on the edge of my seat. Although one factor that impressed me was the film’s cinematography, the jump scares found were subpar due to only a few being unexpected.

The most terrifying aspect of this horror film had to be the plot. It did allow me to understand the situation without needing to watch the other movies, but it was too simplified. It felt very straight forward while only providing the fundamental concepts needed to create a horror movie. The plot consisted of a father and son who were able to see into a dimension filled with demons and goblins that they could interact with in the real world. With this, they have to find a way to ensure the creatures do not manifest in the real world. As it is an interesting concept, the writers of this film could have introduced the problem quicker, as it took a great deal of the movie to get to the main issue. Along with this, when reaching the end of the movie, some aspects were predictable. As an example, the way the lines were written made it easy to foresee certain characteristics of father and son that gave them the ability to enter the demon dimension.

Additionally, the film unintentionally became more comedic than frightening due to how many of the scenes were filmed. For example, a demon appeared to scare the father in the real world, and it stood there holding its hand out. I found this quite funny, as it created awkward tension in the movie when it was supposed to be horrifying.

There was one aspect of the movie that could have potentially redeemed it. The filmmakers did a phenomenal job with the cinematography. Based on the way the film was written, the demon dimension is a replica of the real world, making it easier for them to transfer into the real world. With this, there was constant switching within the movie between the real world and the demon dimension. Even with the same surroundings, the filmmakers made it distinctively clear when one of the characters was switching between realms. For example, there was a specific scene where there was a hammer in the demon realm that was shown in a painting in the real world. The angle from which they filmed the hammer showed a smooth transition from the demon dimension to the real world. It also showed how objects and things are interchangeable between both realms in a cinematic and appealing way.

Even with such a great use of cinematography, it was not enough to salvage this movie. As a horror movie, I anticipated many jump scares. Along with it being the fifth movie in the Insidious series, I expected the jump scares to be petrifying. However, many of the jump scares fell flat. There were a few that got me, but overall, many were ridiculous. For example, there was a jump scare of a possessed man who appeared over a bed and started to throw up on the son. I found this more disgusting than daunting. Put together with the choice of music, the jump scares were dull as the music used made it obvious when a jump scare was about to occur.

Overall, this film was not up to my expectations. It did not have enough vigor to keep the story interesting. I found this movie more like a thriller than a true horror film, as it did not leave me scared. There were many instances where the storyline made me laugh rather than quiver. Maybe the other Insidious movies are great, but I would not recommend Insidious: The Red Door.

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About the Contributor
Joelle Gopaul, Film & TV Editor
Joelle is a senior at Townsend Harris High School. When she is not writing and editing for The Critic's TV/Film Department, she is either singing, boxing, traveling or hanging out with friends. She wants to spend more time hiking and exploring new places.
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