Director: James Wan
Writer: Leigh Whannell
Cast: Patrick Wilson, Rose Byrne, Barbara Hershey, Ty Simpkins, Leigh Whannell, Angus Sampson, Lin Shaye
Seen on: 29.6.2015
[Here’s my first review.]
Josh (Patrick Wilson) and Renai (Rose Byrne) just moved into a new house with their three kids. Their lives are quite normal, their marriage not perfect but mostly well. But then Renai starts to hear and see weird things in the house. After that their son Dalton (Ty Simpkins) falls into a coma – one day he just doesn’t wake up anymore, for no apparent reason. And that’s when the bad things really start to happen.
Way back when I saw the film for the fist time, I was surprised by how much it scared me. Watching it a second time, I didn’t think that it would manage the feat again, but I was wrong. Oh boy, was I ever. Still getting goosebumps about it.
Having watched the film a second time, I can say that I loved it equally as much as the first time, but partly for absolutely the opposite reasons from the last time. For example, when I watched the film the first time, I thought the sound design effective, but also a bit much and one of the weaknesses of the film. This time, I can honestly say that I thought it was the star of the film, providing at least 50% of the film’s tension, atmosphere and awesomeness.
Another thing I criticized back then was the ending that felt weak – this time I was pretty surprized and impressed by how dark it is. I didn’t remember so clearly anymore what happened and I thought ending in that place was a brilliant narrative choice, but also and interesting choice speaking from the point of view of possibly never having any sequels (when the film came out there was no way of knowing whether there ever would be a sequel). It didn’t exactly leave the story unresolved, but definitely much unhappier than we usually get.
I also appreciated the cinematography much more this time round. Having seen a few Wan films by now, I know that interesting angles and dynamic camera movements are a bit of a trademark of his and they aren’t lacking here. They are especially clever with drawing your gaze, sometimes to nowhere in particular so you expect something to happen – and that might not be the case at all.
The cast is still great. The script is still interesting with loveable characters and a story that makes a surprising amount of sense. And I still have goosebumps.