Hello to all those faithfully reading and hopefully enjoying this effort to make even the worst horror movie more watcha... aw, screw that - I'm not that good. If a movie makes you cringe because yet another batch of unlikable teens that are pushing 30 are inching toward their deaths, having a party no one does anywhere ever, a paranormal movie is boring you to tears with unending pans of empty rooms, or thanks to CGI technology when people finally bite it, their blood squirts everywhere except on the victim, the ground, the people next to them... you're in good company and this is the right place for you.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Movies That Are Outright Rip-Offs Of... Just About Everything

Insidious (2011)

This movie was pushed hard, probably because people are becoming bored with this kind of tripe, so telling us it's from the makers of Saw and Paranormal Activity (well, that's a 50% chance of DUH right there) wasn't enough, they even added the tag 'Scarier Than The Exorcist!'. Pfft. 
I thought the Exorcist was hilarious myself. I watched it on TV so I got to see the good parts and skip over the language. Little kids spouting nasty words isn't scary anyway, it's pretty commonplace unfortunately. The effects were good and Linda Blair... whoops, sorry about that. It's just that this movie is so.. so BAD that comparing it to the ground-breaking (although despite its claims totally devoid of facts) movie The Exorcist is like comparing Godzilla to Jurassic Park. They are two totally different animals, so to speak.

Worrying is her only job.

Insidious (should have been Insipid, Insulting, Indecipherable, Incredible Waste Of Money, etc.) rips off  ideas from all kinds of different movies, and doesn't even try anything new. Well, there were a couple things but they were sooo stupid... let's just get on with the plot.

Renai and Josh get a new house for their family. They try to give backstory without actually telling you anything by the mother telling her son Dalton that daddy doesn't like to be photographed. If this is cryptic, get used to it, the whole movie goes this way. Now nothing weird is supposed to have happened yet, but while Dalton is sneaking around the attic he sees something that scares him and falls. What? Oh, you don't get to know. Anything. He seems fine, but the next morning won't wake up. The hospital says their son is in a coma, although there isn't a single physical reason for it. Cryptic. Still. Always. After three months they set him up in his bedroom, IV's, feeding tubes and all. Now Renai starts seeing and hearing things. She's convinced the house is haunted and the husband, pretty much a complete wuss, agrees to just pack up again and move somewhere else.

I hate people with red faces.
Crap, there's one right behind me, isn't there?
It doesn't help. In fact, things get worse. So Josh's mom (played inexplicably by Barbara Hershey - why she's even here is cryptic also) calls a psychic. That's what you're supposed to do in Poltergeist, right? Oops, sorry, wrong movie. Aaaand we find out that the little dickens of a coma boy is an expert at astral projection. Excuse me? Astral projection? That's the best they could do as explanation? Something that was 'hip' to do in the 60's and 70's? Oh, and for their version of lore, this astral plane is called the Further (oh that explains a lot) and lots of spirits live there, and a demon or two. Why? I'm telling you right now, it's no good to ask questions, you get no real answers. So in comes Elise the psychic with her two bumbling investigators (Hmm weren't there three of them in Poltergeist too?) and in Dalton's room Elise supposedly sees the creature after their son - a red faced guy with hoofs and claws. What, no tail? No horns? Hey if you're going to go for demon presences at least make it a little original (or interesting, come on). Even the wuss of a husband gets enough duh from this and kicks them out.

I'm not dead yet I just look that way.
Then for some reason he looks at the pictures his kid drew (Okay, the kid drew them when he was awake and they had been moved from one house to another but he never looked at them before? What a smart, attentive father <insert heavy sarcasm>.). They include pictures of a red door (don't ask) a red faced guy (duh) a horse (huh?) and other things that make this wuss teacher/inattentive father start crying and want the psychic to come back. Elise comes back with her team and Josh's mother and the mother now confesses that Josh himself was an expert at astral projection when he was a kid. He's forgotten because they wanted him to forget. Apparently, while in the Further he attracted the attention of an old woman (no, you're not going to get an explanation on who she is either, stop asking) who, when he gets his picture taken, appears to move closer and closer to him. That is why his picture is never taken, not even as an adult (well there's one with no old woman but you don't get an explanation for that either).

The latest in psychic technology.
They have, not a seance 'cause the kid ain't dead, but something even stupider. This was the original and kind of funny in an absurd way as they added to the astral 'lore'. The psychic (try not to laugh too much) actually puts on a 50's era GAS MASK with a tube that attaches to a pair of headphones that her assistant puts on to write down what she says. It's only funny for a minute though, and slips right back into duh. She supposedly makes contact with Dalton who says the red man is after him and he's lost. So we know what's going to happen next, right? You've seen enough of these to know...

...you lived your life like a candle in the wind.
The wuss, Josh, is now expected to renew his childhood skills and go into the Light - oops, sorry, the Further, to rescue his son and bring them both back to their bodies. Oh brother. This film, mostly filmed in the dark anyway is about to get a lot darker and I don't mean the content, I mean you can't see a damn thing to be scared of in the first place. BUT once he's in the Further oh gee guess what? The Further comes with a lantern. How convenient. He sees a house. Whose house? Who cares? He goes in and we get booga booga action that looks like one of those spook houses where things jump out at you. Yeah, this wasn't scary either. Just really, really boring because he wanders in the dark for quite a while. He sees the old woman of his childhood. Yay. Finally he finds his son - and the red faced 'demon' looking about as scary as your friend in a Halloween mask. He grabs him, running through the place, shouting 'Leave us alone!' which we all know immediately attracts every one of them.... and boom, they're back in their bodies and we get the la la la music of a horror movie done good and a family reunion that lasts for 5 - 4 - 3 - 2 - 1...

If I didn't have a mortgage I wouldn't be here...
The mother and grandmother are in the kitchen with Dalton watching him shovel down spaghetti with two hands (that's really smart - no solid food for over three month, give that kid a carbo overload) not to mention he wouldn't have been able to move from muscle atrophy but that's logic and it doesn't belong here so....

The father is thanking Elise while the two assistants pack their gear. He shakes her hand. She then sees that his hand is old with dirty nails (Whoo, I'm so scared - this dad doesn't believe in Purell). While his back is turned she grabs her digital camera and when he turns takes his picture. This sends him into a rage and he strangles her to death. And disappears. Renai, hearing noises, comes to the living room and finds Elise dead. She sees the camera and the last picture taken. It is of the old woman, completely covering Josh. She screams out for Josh (Why the hell would she do that? Does she want to die too?) and you hear Josh saying menacingly (actually it wasn't, but it was supposed to be), "I'm right behind you." SCREAM. The end. After the credits, we see the old lady blowing out the candle.
So THAT'S where those Overlook Hotel twins went...
This movie was so much crap I was afraid of getting diarrhea. Okay, instead of Insidious, call it Intestinal Discomfort. It's pretty much the same.