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2023 Movie Reviews: Insidious: The Red Door

Poster+for+Insidious%3A+The+Red+Door.
IMdb.com
Poster for Insidious: The Red Door.

As an avid Insidious and Blumhouse fan, I was excited for the fifth Insidious film to hit theaters in July. I was even more excited for the return of the original cast.

The Insidious franchise was created by James Wan and Leigh Whannell and produced by Blumhouse who has created other franchises such as The Conjuring and Sinister. Wan directed the first two films, Whannell the third and producer to all, and Adam Robitel directed the fourth. What makes the fifth installment different from the rest is the directorial debut of actor Patrick Wilson

Wilson starred in the first and second installments alongside Rose Byrne, Ty Simpkins and Barbra Hershey. The third and fourth installments did not feature the Lambert family but did include Elise the psychic.

So what is Insidious about? 

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Great question. Insidious follows the Lambert family as their house is possessed by an evil demon. The son, Dalton, is put into a coma by the demon, and with the help of a psychic and her team, the Lamberts travel into the Further to retrieve him. The second film follows the Lambert family caught in the toils of the Further yet again. 

What is this new installment about?

“Insidious: The Red Door” takes place nine years after the events of the second film. Dalton is grown up and a freshman in college having no recollection of his traumatic childhood experiences due to hypnosis from the psychic. His father, Josh Lambert, also has no memories regarding the demon, Renai Lambert does remember though. So when Dalton is plagued with the repeated image of a red door, the family isn’t immediately alarmed. When Josh has the same sort of visions as Dalton he tries to contact him but Dalton refuses to talk to him making things complicated.

My thoughts:

I went into the theater with my friend and my dad. My dad having only seen the first film and my friend having seen none and me having seen all. This made for an interesting movie experience. My dad understood the basic premise because of the first movie but was lost when the film made references to the second film. My friend however was not so lucky, she was a bit confused regarding the presence of the demon and why certain symbols were important. I think these experiences are important to consider for those who aren’t as steeped in the lore. For the casual viewer they may not understand the plot and overall have an unpleasant experience. 

I liked “Insidious: The Red Door”. Was it the best horror film? No. Do I expect it to win any awards? Probably not. Was it a good end to the Lambert family? Yes! The actors were passionate and I thought Ty Simpkins did a fabulous job returning to the role of Dalton. Patrick Wilson and Rose Byrne are great actors and only add to the film.

 I loved the incorporation of the art from the first film. Dalton paints the Red Door that opens the portal to the Further just like how in the first film he is put into a coma by the demon he draws. 

One part of the film I found interesting was when Dalton traveled into the Further he could “astral project” himself in the real world. Basically, he would appear to be asleep but in reality he was wandering around like a ghost that could interact with the surroundings. He uses this ability in multiple parts of the film and I thought it was a curious way to introduce the Red Door and the demons behind it. 

A part of this film that I cannot understate is the friendship between Dalton and Chris. They are fantastic and I loved watching their friendship grow throughout the course of the movie. Sinclair Daniel was perfect for the role and I thought added some depth and comedy to a pretty otherwise lifeless film. 

Overall I’d give this movie a 5/10 on the spook-o-meter for some jumpscares and overall a 6/10. It was a good end to the franchise and family but as a stand alone film wasn’t all that spectacular. It was a horror movie. Nothing more, nothing less.

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About the Contributor
Sophia Serice, Reviews & A&E Editor
Hi! My name is Sophia Serice and I am a sophomore this year at Loudoun Valley High School. This is my first year as a Staff Reporter and on the staff at the Viking News. This year as a Staff Reporter I am hoping to bring new ideas and stories to the staff, as well as, improve my journalistic and writing skills. I enjoy writing opinion and feature stories on what is happening in Loudoun Valley! Outside of newspaper, I enjoy reading, watching movies, spending time with animals, and participating in theater. I also have a great passion for the sciences and history. I love to travel and learn about other people in the community around me! I am so excited for what this year is to bring!
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