Rated 14A 102 min. 2011

Saw director James Wan and writer Leigh Whannell trade blood spilling for blood-chilling in Insidious, a direct descendant of — and the scariest film since — Paranormal Activity. A boy (Ty Simpkins) goes into a mysterious coma, a development that coincides with much supernatural weirdness and prompts his parents (Patrick Wilson and Rose Byrne) to consult an expert in otherworldly matters (Lin Shaye). Turns out malevolent fiends are trying to steal little Dalton’s soul while he sleeps. With Paranormal director Oren Peli producing, Wan delivers an object lesson on the importance of sound in horror movies, wringing chest-constricting tension from ticking clocks, creaking doors and extended stretches of silence. By the time some hokum about “astral projection” comes out, your nerves are so frayed you can’t even question it. –Matt Semansky

Film Credits

Official Site:

Director: James Wan

Writer: Leigh Whannell

Producer: Jason Blum, Oren Peli and Steven Schneider

Cast: Patrick Wilson, Rose Byrne, Barbara Hershey, Angus Sampson, Ty Simpkins, Andrew Astor, J. LaRose, Derick Alexander, Johnny Yong Bosch and Josh Feldman


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