Insidious: The Last Key (2018)

Insidious: The Last Key
Director: Adam Robitel
Writer: Leigh Whannell
Sequel to: Insidious, Insidious: Chapter 2, Insidious: Chapter 3
Cast: Lin Shaye, Leigh Whannell, Angus Sampson, Kirk Acevedo, Caitlin Gerard, Spencer Locke, Josh Stewart, Tessa Ferrer, Bruce Davison, Ty Simpkins, Rose Byrne, Patrick Wilson, Barbara Hershey, Joseph Bishara
Seen on: 11.1.2018
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Plot:
Elise (Lin Shaye) is a successful parapsychologist with a lot of experience under her belt. But when she is called to a case in her own childhood home, she declines to help. She can’t stomach the idea to go back to where she first encountered the supernatural. But her conscience doesn’t let her leave the cry for help unanswered. Her assistants Specs (Leigh Whannell) and Tucker (Angus Sampson) accompany her on her way to New Mexico.

Insidious: The Last Key is, unfortunately, a disappointment after the strong films in the series before it (especially the first two). The character work is still solid, but it just isn’t scary.

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Insidious: Chapter 2 (2013)

Insidious: Chapter 2
Director: James Wan
Writer: Leigh Whannell
Sequel to: Insidious
Cast: Patrick Wilson, Rose Byrne, Barbara Hershey, Ty Simpkins, Leigh Whannell, Angus Sampson, Lin Shaye, Steve Coulter
Seen on: 30.6.2015

Plot:
After what happened in their home, the Lambert family decide to stay a while with Josh’s (Patrick Wilson) mother Lorraine (Barbara Hershey). But that home brings up memories from the first time Josh was confronted with the Black Bride and Lorraine had to ask Elise (Lin Shaye) and Carl (Stve Coulter) for help. Maybe that’s the reason why Josh is behaving so weirdly. Or maybe there is more to it.

Insidious: Chapter 2 might not be quite as good as the first film, but the difference between the two is so small, it almost disappears entirely.

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Re-Watch: Insidious (2010)

Insidious
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.]

Plot:
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.

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Outer Space (1999)

Outer Space
Director: Peter Tscherkassky
Writer: Peter Tscherkassky
Based on: The Entity
Seen on: 27.03.2015

Plot:
Tscherkassky re-edited footage from The Entity, transforming it into a psychedelic fight of a woman (Barbara Hershey) against, apparently, her own house. Or is it against the film itself?

Outer Space is a short film and I was glad that it was only a short – I don’t think I could have stomached the kaleidoscopic images, the sound design, the film jumps, the flashing lights for an entire feature. But despite the exhaustion caused by the film, the disorientation is evocative, creating a very unique atmosphere and one that is worth experiencing.

outerspaceSummarizing: it’s work, but it’s worth it. At least if you like experimental film.

Riding the Bullet (2004)

Riding the Bullet
Director: Mick Garris
Writer: Mick Garris
Based on: Stephen King‘s novella
Cast: Jonathan Jackson, David Arquette, Barbara Hershey, Matt Frewer, Erika Christensen

Plot:
After his girlfriend Jessica (Erika Christensen) pretends to break up with him to surprise him with his birthday party, art student Alan (Jonathan Jackson) tries to commit suicide and is only stopped by the arrival of said surprise guests. When he leaves the hospital, things don’t get much better: instead of going to the John Lennon concert Jessica got him tickets for, Alan is informed that his mother (Barbara Hershey) had a stroke and is in the hospital. Alan decides to hike back home to visit her, but the night he spends on the road is more than a little off.

I rather liked Riding the Bullet. It’s certainly not the best at anything, but it does  have some nice visuals and a very decent cast.

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Beaches (1988)

Beaches
Director: Garry Marshall
Writer: Mary Agnes Donoghue
Based on: Iris Rainer‘s novel
Starring: Bette Midler, Barbara Hershey, John Heard, Mayim Bialik, Marcie Leeds, James Read, Grace Johnston

Plot:
CC (Mayim Bialik) and Hillary (Marcie Leeds) meet when they’re 12 years old and despite the fact that their lives couldn’t be any more different, they strike up an immediate and lifelong friendship. While CC dreams of becoming a singer and star to escape her life in the Bronx, Hillary follows her family’s money to an ivy league university. 10 years of pen palness after their first meeting, CC (Bette Midler) and Hillary (Barbara Hershey) move in together and continue to face life together, with all highs and lows.

My sister was appalled when she recently found out that I had never seen this film. She immediately gave me her DVD and told me to watch it because it’s one of her favorite films. Despite that I didn’t think I would like it much (prejudices getting in the way). But it turns out that it really is a beautiful film about a wonderful friendship.

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Insidious (2010)

Insidious is the newest film by James Wan, written by Leigh Whannell and starring Patrick Wilson, Rose Byrne, Barbara Hershey, Ty Simpkins, Leigh Whannell, Angus Sampson and Lin Shaye.

Plot:
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.

I’ve heard good things in advance about Insidious and I was hoping that the film lived up to his hype – much too often I’m disappointed by horror movies. I enjoy them but I’m just not that easily scared. But holy freaking mother of crap. Insidious went straight into my top 3 scariest movies ever. My heart still beats a bit faster when I think about it.

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Black Swan (2010)

Black Swan is the newest film by Darren Aronofsky, starring Natalie Portman, Vincent Cassel, Mila Kunis, Barbara Hershey and Winona Ryder.

Plot:
Nina (Natalie Portman) is a dancer in a struggling ballet company. Its director Thomas (Vincent Cassel) decides to put on a version of Swan Lake where the White Swan and the Black Swan are played by the same person. Nina auditions like everybody else, but in her need to control everything, she never seems to be able to really get the sensual seduction of the Black Swan. The pressure on her rises – from Thomas, from new company member Lily (Mila Kunis) with whom Nina strikes up a competition, from Nina’s mother Erica (Barbara Hershey), but most of all from Nina herself.

My expectations for this film was way, way, way up high. Not only is it the newest film by Aronofsky and stars two of my favorite actors (Portman and Cassel) and I hadn’t heard a single bad word about it in advance. Expectations couldn’t get any higher. And how completely satisfying is it that all of them were met?

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