Archive for October, 2018


This latest installment in the long running slasher series is one hell of a return to form. Halloween is a direct sequel to the original 1978 classic directed by genre legend John Carpenter. What it asks of the audience is to put aside any of the previous sequels in the series and instead focus on this fresh spin on where the story goes next. It doesn’t erase any of the other films. Instead it offers another path for the series iconic characters to travel. A bold move and one which I appreciated. I think it is fair to say that as a franchise Halloween had hit a creative brick wall of sorts after 1998’s H20.

Michael Myers, who stalked and almost murdered Laurie Strode back in the original movie, is locked away. His reign of bloodshed and terror has never been forgotten. He left a trial of bodies in his wake and in the process this being of pure death became the stuff of nightmares and legend. Laurie has never forgotten her fateful encounter with Myers. Although he failed to kill her that night his mark has stayed with her for forty years! As Halloween approaches and Michael is due to be transported fate will again see that these two will cross paths once again on Halloween night and this time scores will be settled. I ain’t going any further into the plot.

Director David Gordon Green has crafted a really good movie here. As a slasher movie this film delivers. The way the film is lit and shot is a credit to Carpenter’s original. Tension and scares are constructed in the best way. You never know when and where Michael will strike. When he does these encounters are scary and effective in their suddeness and how brutal they are. People die hard in this film and it leaves a lot less to the imagination when it comes to bloodshed. One tracking shot, you’ll know it when you see it, must have made Carpenter proud. Yet this is Green’s film and as such his respect for Carpenter’s film and the impact it had on cinema is clear in his take and the skill he and his crew employ to pull off what they have here.

What impresses the most is how the film is much more than that. Trauma is a big part of this film and by that I mean emotional scars and how that trauma can fester and spread. Forty years is a long time to live in fear and the film does not shy away from exploring how hard that must be. It’s funny too. It’s not all blood and grim-central. That’s down to the script and when you see it is written by Green and his frequent collaborator Danny McBride alongside Jeff Fradley it is no surprise. The humour is earned and feels natural. Do not go freaking out thinking the film is like a slasher version of their previous works because it is not. This is a dark film and these guys are on record as stating they’re actually big fans of the genre and it shows. For a start their script hooked Jamie Lee Curtis back. Curtis surely felt she had left Laurie Strode and to see her come back to this world and how awesome she is in this film, a movie she didn’t need to do, is just so cool for a longtime fan like myself. Her co-stars are just as good. The characters are well written and interesting and the plot goes into some unexpected areas, one or two I did not see coming and that is always a plus with these kind of films.

The biggest ” We did it!” of this film has to be the involvement of John Carpenter himself. He had, until now, been hands off when it came to Halloween. Seeing how some of the sequels turned out I don’t blame him. He lent a hand here and gave advice when it came to the structure of the plot but his biggest gift being he provided the score, along with his son Cody Carpenter and Daniel A. Davies, for the film. The music is excellent. Once those opening titles kicked off I was grinning and just loving the feel of this film and knowing it would not let me down and it didn’t.

I really like this one. Sure some fans felt annoyed at the fact it was doing its own thing but I see that as a creative breath of fresh air. Plus there’s plenty of nods to some of the later films in this one if you keep an eye out. Original Myers actor Nick Castle is here too. I’m finding it hard to think of some negatives. I guess if you don’t like slasher movies then you probably won’t like this? Or if you can’t let go of what was a really messy continuity up until recently? I am just happy this film is here and that I like it. This and The Predator were my two MUST SEE movies of the year and I feel real lucky they turned out as well as they did.

This is a celebration of Halloween and one which puts the series back on track. It is that strong a part of me thinks all involved should just quit while they are ahead in case a crap or rushed sequel follows this but hopefully that will not be the case. If the same care and skill goes into what comes next it can be a direct sequel to Season of the Witch for all I care. As of writing Halloween looks set to be breaking some franchise and box office records so I think a sequel is on the cards and hopefully the success of this movie will encourage studios to bring back some other iconic slasher movies. So far it is shaping up to be a hell of decade for horror!






Jumanji is a boss 90’s family/fantasy movie. In 2005 the film got a sort of sequel in the form of Zathura: A Space Adventure but that film was more of a spiritual sequel than a direct sequel. It took a few more years for that to arrive and it did with last years Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle. The sequel was – according to fans and critics – worth the wait. It made a lot of money at the box office during the Christmas 2017 season. It’s directed by Jake Kasdan (Bad Teacher) and stars Dwayne Johnson, Karen Gillan, Jack Black and Kevin Heart.

I like Jumanji a lot and I think Zathura is a fun companion movie. The trailers for Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle had my hopes high this sequel could work as well as the first movie. Sadly I don’t think it does. On a surface level everything is fine – the plot, the acting, the pace and the themes – but it just doesn’t have that charm and magic the original had in spades. At least it didn’t for me. A ton of people had a great time with this so maybe it’s me who is in the minority.

See the plot of this film is decent. Jumanji, we all know by now, is a jungle set board game which traps the player inside the game until they beat it. If the player dies in the game they die for real. The focus of the first film had the players trying to stop the contents of the game coming into our world. In the sequel the kids caught up in Jumanji are transported into the game, this time taking the form of a video game. Now that angle I really liked. Inside the game their avatars become the main characters of the film and that is where Johnson, Hart, Black and Gillan come into it. Jack Black is the best part of the film. The other cast members put in likeable enough performances, apart from Hart (I like Kevin Hart but his character annoyed me in this) but it’s Jack Black who comes out of the film winning. He is so good here.

I like how the film takes the audience inside the world of the game. It’s fun getting to finally see just why Jumanji is so dangerous. The locations used to bring the game to life are pretty good too with some cool sets and location work creating a real deep jungle vibe.  The plot makes a throwback to the mid 90’s and during those scenes I loved the attention to detail. From the band posters to the game console on display. Once the board game takes on the traits of a video game there are some fun gags that hold true to the rules of video games.

This brings me to what I didn’t enjoy so much. The animals aren’t the stars and the film brings in more run of the mill action movie bad guys as the villains. Giving the sequel a action movie vibe. Normally I’m all for a fun action movie but not with this. I dun know. It just didn’t flow well for me and some stuff that was meant to be funny just didn’t work. It’s like the world of the series was made to accommodate Dwayne Johnson and what he brings to a role when it should have been the other way around. This is more like a action flick using the Jumanji world as a playground. If you don’t mind that you’ll no doubt have a good time with it.

Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle is a good movie. Don’t let my vibes on it put you off seeing it if you plan to. There’s some stuff in here that is a lot of fun and it’s not boring although at two hours it almost goes on a bit too long. I guess I hold the original flick too close to my movie loving heart. I also think Zathura is the better ‘sequel’.


Planet of the Apes

Posted: October 24, 2018 in Movies


It must have been carzy cool going to the theatre and watching Planet of the Apes for the first time in 1968. The film is a classic. It is famed for having one of the most shocking endings in the history of film. Don’t worry I won’t let that twist slip here but yea…that ending. Wow.

Planet of the Apes is directed by Franklin J. Schaffner. I do not know him nor am I familiar with his work outside of this movie. He’s done a lot more for sure but I guess this was the one that stood out. A classic of cinema is no small thing so either way he left his mark on the medium. Hollywood icon Charlton Heston starred in the picture alongside Fright Night’s Roddy McDowall, Kim Hunter, Maurice Evans and Linda Harrison. Heston plays Taylor a U.S. astronaut who becomes stranded, with two other crew mates, on this weird alien looking planet after their space ship crashes. At first it looks as if this world is devoid of life until the trio come across humans…who can’t speak and act savage. Then come the apes…fully clothed, riding on the back of horses, holding rifiles and capturing/killing the human pests.

Yea. Things go from bad to worse for Taylor and his friends. Outside of the action, the wonder and the awesome special effects is a film that has a lot to say. Planet of the Apes is one of those boss films that uses science fiction to make a kind of commentary on the real life culture the audience of the time belongs to. When it came out in the late 1960’s race discrimination was (sadly still is) a big deal in the United States and other parts of the world. In the movie race is explored, the madness of man, greed and class systems within society. The way these issues are explored are through the ape society and how that works within itself. Then going further and turning the tables on man and as a result the audience. The film goes further (in a bold way for the late 60’s) by bringing in debates on science vs. religion. All of these talking points are just some of the reasons why I love the film as much as I do. I think this movie is way better and more interesting than any of the more recent ones. I’m not knocking the Andy Serkis Apes movies. I like them a lot. Just the ’68 version is on another level.

Legendary Hollywood composer Jerry Goldsmith did the score on this film and oh boy it is outstanding. The music in Planet of the Apes leaves as much of an impact on the audience as the shocking final image of the film. I LOVE the score because it can be spooky and alien at the same time. It makes you feel the unease Taylor must feel being on this alien landscape and so far from home. The make up and special effects are some of the best. Not of the time either. Great work is timeless and that goes for the work on display in Planet of the Apes. The apes look fantastic and the performences from the actors shine right through. I don’t think motion capture will ever match real world effects in that regard.

This film is so good. The visuals are some of the most impressive on location shots I have seen. All of the performences from the lead actors are excellent. This is a cinema classic for a good reason and it is THE reason why the Planet of the Apes franchise is still one of cinemas most impressive in 2018 and hopefully beyond.



The release of the next Halloween movie is right around the corner. I thought it would be cool to take a look at the excellent Halloween: Nightdance comic mini-series from 2008. The four part series is written by Stefan Hutchinson and features excellent artwork from Tim Seeley. For fans of the franchise this is pretty much “Must read

Halloween: Nightdance takes place in the quiet town of Russellville. The main character is a teenage girl who is just managing to come to terms with a horrific event from her past. Like a Robert Altman or Paul Thomas Anderson film this entry into the Halloween series takes a multiple point of view approach to the world of The Shape and how those unlucky enough to come across his path end up. One take away from Nightdance is there are arguably worse fates than death! The way the plot follows different characters and how their tales and encounters with the iconic killer come together is one of the most well plotted and executed parts about the comic. The character work here is better than in most of the proper movie sequels. You give a shit about these characters. Running through the nightmare of this tale is a central mystery too and the outcome of that is chilling.

One thing I can not stress enough is this comic is for mature readers. Beyond the obvious stalk and slash scenes there are some shocking moments that you might not expect. So consider yourself warned if you do not like your horror too in your face. The kills are flat out nasty. Way worse than any in the films. That includes that hyper violent Rob Zombie ones.

Easily the two big stand outs here are the excellent writing, which I’ve gone into above and the artwork. This comic is both beautiful and haunting. These guys are clearly fans of the Halloween series but what comes across most is they get it. It’s easy to say “Yea we’re big fans of the Halloween movies” and then deliver some mess of a sequel but here it is clear Hutchinson and Seeley got what Carpenter set out to do with the original movie and built upon it with their series.

Back when this comic came out right away I thought it would make an excellent movie. We’ve seen the Halloween series, on film, go through its fair share of ups (Season of the Witch, The Return of Michael Myers, H20) and downs (Halloween 5, 6 and Resurrection)over the years. Nightdance felt like the perfect template for movie producers to get the horror franchise back on track. Maybe one day. The best part about Nightdance is how it fits effortlessly into the canon of the films. It has its own start, middle and end and no matter where the films go this could slot in with no issues along the line. Maybe one day.

Read this comic series if you are a Halloween fan. I think it is hard to track down these days but if you can find it and it’s not some crazy price check it out. You won’t be sorry.



Black Panther

Posted: October 19, 2018 in Movies


A few years back I saw Ryan Coogler’s Creed and I loved it. Still do. Brilliant film, one which played a big role in putting the Rocky franchise back into the minds of movie going audiences and creating a brand new saga all its own. Most MCU fans would agree that one of the best parts of Captain America: Civil War was the Black Panther. Sure Spider-Man got the push in the marketing for that movie but once you saw the film it was Black Panther who made the bigger impact. After that movie it was not a case of would he get a solo movie but when. News quickly broke that Ryan Coogler had been chosen to bring the Black Panther solo movie to audiences. This fan was delighted. The film debuted earlier this year, shattered box office records and the rest is history.

I would say Civil War was my real introduction to the character of Black Panther. Like Captain Marvel my only exposure to him was through the recent new Ultimates comic. That series was a team based one. Outside of that dynamic I had little clue about either character on their own terms. Black Panther the movie does a outstanding job, a big job honestly when you take it all in, of bringing the character, his goals, his people and his world to movie going audiences. That’s a tall order but Coogler and the MCU team make it seem like it was no trouble. Aside from some scenes, literally one or two, I felt took the film in some odd directions tone wise, Black Panther is a very well done entry into the MCU canon.

The direction the film takes with the plot is contained in the way everything is, mostly, centred around T’Challa/Black Panther and his home of Wakanda. With the main beats of the plot having to do with T’Challa facing opposition to his rule which he must face and overcome. If he can’t he’ll be dead and his county will face ruin as it falls under the rule of those who wish to use Wakanda’s advanced technology and weapons to rule the world. Wise moves from the writers because you get a central plot that is tailored for our hero and one which won’t confuse audiences who maybe did not catch Civil War and therefore forgoes the risk of alienating viewers.

What I loved about this film was the true reveal of the nation of Wakanda. Like Thor and the mystical wonder of his home world in Black Panther we are shown a realm, while of Earth, is like nothing we have seen. Wakanda is the age old land of legend which has remained hidden for countless years. An advanced civilisation right in the centre of where all life began. Really cool myth and science fiction beats that I love and then you also get some serious spy movie flavours thrown in which somehow compliment everything else instead of making the film and it’s plot seem bloated.

Chadwick Boseman is a strong lead. T’Challa is not a show off like Tony Stark or as funny as Thor but what Boseman is able to convey is the character’s core power. You do not want to get on the wrong side of this king because instead of cracking wise he will just eliminate the issue in front of him. He has heart too though and that is what makes him real likeable. It’s all about the family and friends first, then his country and then anyone who messes with either. Elsewhere in the cast you have heavy hitters like Forest Whitaker and Angela Bassett, frequent Coogler collaborater Michael B. Jordan and the ultimate butt kicking female trio – give these ladies their own movie now please – Danai Gurira, Lupita Nyong’o and Letitia Wright. My favourite character is Gurira’s Okoye. So awesome. I hope to see her in many, many more MCU movies to come. Martin Freeman and Andy Serkis give good support too.

Coogler and his team deliver strong action sequences throughout the movie. These MCU films always deliver on the action front. I think that’s one of the many reasons I like these films as much as I do outside of being a comic book fan. In Black Panther not only is there a lot of action it is staged well, shot well and therefore it flows real well. The soundtrack is boss too. The film’s musical score is one of the more memorable MCU ones. If there’s been one weak part of the MCU movies it has been the lack of memorable musical scores and Black Panther goes some way to making up for that. Mostly the film flies along at a great pace but I did think there was one instance where it felt like the film was repeating itself and some of the reveals or big moments you could see coming but that’s just what you may expect when you watch a lot of comic book movies.

Black Panther is here to stay. A quality addition to the world of the MCU that I hope has only scratched the surface of what lies ahead for the character and Wakanda. Check out Captain America: Civil War and Avengers: Infinity War for more Black Panther action and look out for Black Panther 2 which Ryan Coogler has now been confirmed to return to direct.





Hella Classic is a new tag for movies on here that mean a lot to me and chances are these films will have struck a chord with many other viewers over the years. Please be excited 😉

What better movie to kick it off than one which really opened my eyes to the power of cinema and how many other genres beyond action and horror had the ability to amaze and move audiences.

The Truman Show is one of the most important films in Jim Carrey’s filmography. The reason is this film showed a new side to Carrey beyond the comic; the dramatic actor. Along with Man on the Moon, released not long after this, Carrey soon became established as a serious talent and had skills that went beyond being the crazy comedy guy. Released in 1998 and directed by Peter Weir the film, a mix of comedy, drama, satire and even a bit of science fiction, was a hit with critics and was one of the best films I saw at the movies that year.

Carrey plays Truman Burbank. This guy has it all. Marriage, job and lovely home and all within a town that looks like it belongs on an old Hollywood sound stage. Which is exactly what his life is. What Truman doesn’t know is he is the star of the worlds biggest show, The Truman Show, which has documented his life from birth, twenty four hours a day, to audiences all around the world. Don’t worry. That is not a big twist in the film, it’s pretty clear what is going on as soon as the film starts. One morning, starting out like any other, Truman begins to question his reality as more and more strange events occur that suggest all is not what it seems. What follows is a funny, touching and at times dark tale that brings up some interesting ethical questions outside of the laughs.

What works great in this classic is the way the film plays up the fact it’s a reality show for everyone involved except Truman. It’s funny seeing how his wife Meryl (Laura Linney) inserts insane product placement in the midst of their domestic lives. Or how his best buddy Marlon (Noah Emmerich) always makes sure to have his can of beer facing the camera in order for the logo to be seen by viewers at home. I love all of that subtle stuff. The smarts of the film are the way these funny things turn serious and quite dark.

Truman, as the film goes along, begins to understand what is happening more and more. He doesn’t know who to turn to for help or who to trust. His wife who he has known since college? As far as she’s concerned she’s just an actress and her priority is ad revenue and not her husbands well being. Sad when you witness him loosing his mind. One of the most heart-breaking scenes has Marlon, his childhood friend(!), lying to Truman’s face, being fed dialogue, about how he will always be there for him and would never lie to him. All of this control and direction oversaw by the creator of the show Christof (Ed Harris). This guy literally looks down on Truman’s life and the world he has created for him. God complex doesn’t begin to cover this guys attitude problem. Far as he is concerned Truman is owned by the studio. Goes without saying you wanna see Truman break free.

Carrey is excellent. I loved him and his movies growing up in the 90’s. It was a real gift being a kid at that time and being able to see this crazy and fun new talent emerging as a comedy star throughout the 90’s. In my eyes he was always the funny guy who pulled the hysterical faces but this movie showed a new side of the comic. It remains one of his best performances.

The supporting cast are good too but the most interesting is Ed Harris. Christof seems like a complex guy. He clearly has feelings for Truman, in some ways he is Truman’s father/creator, but his desire as a show runner threatens to overshadow his humanity. This is a relationship I would have liked to have seen more of. If there is one small issue I have with this brilliant film is it ends when it seems like the real story could just be starting. Perhaps that is the point?

The Truman Show is a one of a kind movie. Most people have seen it by now but if you haven’t then please check it out. It makes you think and it is equally funny and moving and in the culture of reality TV we now find ourselves in this film is not as far fetched as it seemed upon release. The excellent script was written by Andrew Niccol, who wrote another great sci-fi movie with 1997’s Gattaca. That is well worth a watch too. This film has lost none of its impact and is a worthy addition to any fan of movies home collection.



Hella Halloween: Pet Sematary

Posted: October 15, 2018 in Movies


Pet Sematary was, I think, the first Stphen King novel I read. I still have the amaze second hand hardback book to this day and that’s because it’s one of my favourite books. Thanks to the recent smash hit It King’s horror books are back in demand in a big way and so are feature adaptations of his work. Naturally Pet Sematary is in production right now and due for release early next year. But before that movie (hopefully) scares us all there is ANOTHER movie, from way back in 1989, which adapted the excellent horror novel from King. The good news if you have not seen it? It’s rather good.

Released in November 1989 Pet Sematary is directed by Mary Lambert and stars Dale Midkiff, Star Trek: The Next Generation’s Denise Crosby and Fredy Cwynne. The film is one about death and how people react to it. The horror comes in the form of a very old burial site, hidden beyond a seemingly harmless pet cematary, in which the soil is rotten and the land cursed. Even the original builders of the site abandoned it. For good reason. Should one bury one of their own who has died in that soil they will return to them. Not in a “Oh awesome you’re alive again” way, no, more like a “Ew. Why are you so gross and trying to kill me?!” way. Anything that comes back from the burial site comes back changed and evil. The good news is hardly anyone knows about the place and it is this big dark secret. To begin with.

Midkiff and Crosby star as Louis and Rachel Creed. They and their young family move into a new home. It’s picture perfect except for the big old road right on their doorstep. Day and night lorries come speeding up and down. Pretty dangerous and even more so when you factor in they have two young kids and a cat that likes to run around. Somthing bad happens and then somthing really bad happens. Then thanks to seemingly well intentioned good neighbour Jud (Gwynne), Louis finds himself making one bad decision after another and the results are the stuff of nightmares.

Beyond the clear horror elements in the film there are some great examinations of how people react to death. How they differ from person to person and how being unable to accept what comes to us all one day can be in some ways worse. Crosby, as Rachel, gets some great stuff to work with as her character has her own issues from her childhood that relate to a dying sibling. The effects of which have never left her. It is really haunting and scary stuff, which piled onto the usual horror helpings of the world of Stephen King, makes for a film that has a lot going on.

On a pure horror movie level there’s loads here! The special make up effects are brilliant. They are also very gory and not in a fun Friday the 13th way either. There’s some proper messed up stuff in this film. It’s a good mix of practical puppet work and use of actual actors that blend together to pull off some scary scenes. The acting is good with Jud Grandall and Brad Greenquist making the biggest impact. Miko Hughes, who starred in Wes Craven’s New Nightmare, is also great as young Gage Creed. King adpated his own book so the script is good and Mary Lambert does a good job with the pace and the overall direction.

I love the book a lot and I’m happy with this adaptation. Could it have been better? Sure! There’s always room for improvement with these kind of films and there’s stuff from the book the film only hints at. Maybe the new adaptation will include that stuff? Check out Pet Sematary if you have not already, more so before the new one comes out next year OR, even better, read the book.



Live action Aladdin teaser trailer!

Posted: October 12, 2018 in Movies

Here is the very first footage from the hotly anticipated live action remake of Disney’s Aladdin. The original animated classic was a constant in most homes throughout the 90’s. I know I watched my old VHS copy on – almost – repeat. It is one of the very best Disney animated movies and has lost none of it’s magic to this day. One of the big reasons for that is the fantastic and timeless voice work from the great Robin Williams. He left a eternal impression as the larger than life Genie.

The live action film is directed by Guy Ritchie. Now he may not seem like the most obvious choice but he is. He has a great talent for locking into the underbelly of society and that is where Aladdin, the hero, begins his journey. Mena Massoud, Naomi Scott (Power Rangers), Will Smith and Marwan Kenzari star. With Will Smith taking on the role of Genie.

Very much a teaser. We do not get to see that much really but I feel it nails the tone and mystery of the animated movie. Still no proper look at our core characters yet, with only small hints. I do hope we get their reveal in another trailer and not on the cover of Entertainment Weekly later on today or next week. You’d have to ask who not just show them in the trailer?

Aladdin is one of Disney’s most anticipated live action adaptations. I don’t envy the people behind the movie. Hopefully all involved will deliver a fresh take on a classic which will do just enough on its own terms to warrant being made outside of being a standard copy and paste from animation into live action. If the film proves to be as good as the recent live action Jungle Book then I don’t think us fans have anything to worry about.

Aladdin hits UK screens May 24th 2019.



Pet Sematary trailer !

Posted: October 10, 2018 in Movies

I hope this movie ends up being good and scary. This isn’t the first time Pet Sematary has been adapted into a movie and I am a fan of that original 1989 release. In fact I’ve already written up an article for it for on here so look for that soon.

This new take on the classic Stephen King novel is directed by Kevin Kolsh and Dennis Widmyer. These guys directed Starry Eyes which is good if you haven’t seen it. That movie is a twisted horror tale so I think these two blokes know what they are doing. As for the trailer well…I think it has an excellent foundation in the form of King’s novel but I think it looks like they’ve gone a bit too far with adding stuff.

The 1989 movie left out some awesome bits from the book so when I see this trailer for the remake and I see scary looking kids in animal masks running around some house I won’t lie I’m wondering what the hell is going on? Big fan of the book and as I said the movie from back in the late eighties. I just hope the directors haven’t gone crazy adding in more sub-plots that over-complicate things.

On the plus side the cast is good, the film looks great and if you have no idea what the book is about then you’re going to be in for one hell of a scary ride.

Jason Clarke, John Lithgow and Amy Seimetz star in the movie which is due for release April 5th 2019.


Insidious: The Last Key is the fourth entry in the ghost hunting franchise from the team behind The Conjuring movies. Funny aside, Insidious was first out of the gate and I think it is a bit odd the guys behind these movies have not linked both films universes. You know with the whole currently ongoing Conjuring universe push? Seems like a no brainer. Anyway back to this flick, which is a sequel to the third film but a prequel to the first two movies. You got that? That non-linear appraoch to these films is one of the reasons I think this series is quite cool.

The Last Key is directed by Adam Robitel. He’s good. He’s made a decent horror film with this one. You might think the series is going on a bit by now but thanks to another great turn from series star Lin Shaye and some tight suspense and scares it appears like Insidious is good to go for another film or two yet.

In The Last Key the story picks up not long after the events of the third film. Elise (Shaye) and sidekicks Tucker and Specs (Angus Sampson and Leigh Whannell) are now an established ghost hunting team. They even have their own Scooby van in the form of this awesome truck! Elise recieves a call from a stranger asking her for help with a ghost problem. The hook this time is the location of the haunting is the very house Elise grew up in. She has her own demons relating to that house and at first declines to help but her good nature wins out. What follows proves to be more than just a simple haunted house case.

If you have followed the Insidious series from the start there is a lot to like here. Scenes that may seem of little importance to the casual viewer will have more of an impact for long time fans. I dug that attention to detail. Another highlight of the film is how the plot explores more of Elise’s backstory and how she came to be the awesome hero she is today. Make no mistake Elise is the star of this series and I think it is awesome. As a long time horror fan it is so cool seeing an actor like Lin Shaye, who has been acting for years and years, finally get the chance to step up and lead her own franchise. Bonus points to the script too. Just when you think you have the plot of the film figured out it pulls the rug out from under you. It has one of the better twists in the series. The setting is very spooky. It’s just some house but the spooky stuff relates to where the house is. Not a place I would want to live.

I have to say I’m one of the fans who does not really care for the humour of the Specs and Tucker characters. This aspect of the films has been there since the original one and I guess it’s not going anywhere. The jokes don’t ruin the film but that sort of humour is just not my thing. I don’t mind having humour in my horror movies but I don’t find Tucker and Specs funny.

Don’t overlook Insidious: The Last Key. It is a worthy addition to the series and I think it’s probably one of the stronger sequels/prequels. The plot of the film and scares are more impactful than in Chapter 2 or Chapter 3, both of which I rate and liked. I just want to highlight this fourth entry may be better than you’d think. With Halloween approaching now would be an ideal time to check this one out.