Insidious: The Last Key - 2018
Director(s): Adam Robitel
Writer(s): Leigh Whannell
Cinematography by: Toby Oliver
Editor(s): Timothy Alverson
Cast: Lin Shaye, Leigh Whannell, Angus Sampson, Kirk Acevedo and Josh Stewart
Parapsychologist Dr. Elise Rainier, Lin Shaye, is called back to her childhood home to face a haunting caused by her.
This marks the fourth installment in the Insidious franchise and luckily there is a key word (get it?) in the title of this one that gives me hope for the future, and that’s “last”. Don’t get me wrong, I loved the first installment, was lukewarm on the second one and I really enjoyed the third one. This one just felt like a lazy rethread of the greatest hits of a great band. Only it’s your drunk uncle singing them at your local karaoke. Sure, he will hit at least one high note during his set, but for the most part you’re just counting away the minutes to the end. So, let’s get in to it.
I’ll say my positives first as I tend to do despite me not liking a movie overall. I try to stay true to my website’s name and spread a more positive view on movies. The main villain of the story has keys for fingers. No that’s not the cool thing. He uses his keys to interact with the bodies of his victims in a unique and creative way. There. Moving on.
This is director Adam Robitel’s second movie and sadly, it shows. There are many directors that from day one are great and blow us away (easy example- 2017’s Get Out by Jordan Peele) and others that take a couple of lemons before they can give the audience a good glass of lemonade. There are multiple scenes in which you can see the character that is currently speaking moving their lips out of sync with the words they are saying as they over voice over to fix the mistake. It’s jarring and it took me out of the film completely. Many takes felt like the first attempt at the scene and they just wanted to get back to lunch. The tone of the movie is inconsistent and at times I found myself reaching for my phone and stopping myself since I was in crowded theater.
Leigh Whannell once again returned to pen the script and this time around he focused more on the comedic aspect rather than the horror aspect. One of the most vivid scares I have had in a long time at the theater was during the first Insidious. The reason why is Whannell built up the tension as the movie progressed putting me on the edge of my sit as I didn’t know what else was going to happen to the family. This time around it was just a series of jump scares and bad jokes that never landed once for me and the audience I was with. Also, the story doesn’t fully make sense, as she returns to her childhood home that they show in the opening and its exactly the same despite multiple decades having passed. Well, there are some webbs here and there, even though there is a new owner. Stuff like this just makes me instantly check out. If you didn’t care enough in your product, I won’t care either as a consumer.
Quick note: one of the biggest elements that make this franchise stand-out are the demon designs they have for each of the new villains. Think of the black and red-faced demon from the original. The one in this movie looks like a design The Walking Dead threw out in the dumpster and the production crew stole it of the backlot.
The sound design is also boring and uneventful. If you close your eyes and just listen to the music you wouldn’t be able to distinguish it from any other conveyor belt horror movie. You have the classic fade in and out voice of the ghosts, the bone cracking moving entity that everyone copied from 1998’s Ringu and the monotone organ music. This movie also confuses loud noises for scares. I jump so hard at one point that my wife asked me “are you scared” and I just simply said yes. Scared of rupturing an eardrum. I didn’t feel tense or invested for one second.
Insidious: The Last Key is just a boring movie, jam-packed with horror tropes that won’t bring anything new to the genre. Hopefully this is the last in the franchise that could’ve left on a semi high note with the previous installment. The movie runtime is under two hours. I didn’t waste two-full-hours and that’s why I love movies.
Insidious: The Last Key is currently playing in theaters. Skip this one completely.
If you like this review let me know in the comment section down below. Also, follow me over at Twitter (@yILovemovies) or over on Facebook, so you can be up to date with all my reviews.