Directed by Leigh Whannell (who wrote Saw and co-created the last two Insidious), Chapter 3 begins with Quinn Brenner (Stefanie Scott), a young teenage girl who ask Elise Rainier’s (Lin Shaye) help to contact her dead mother. For any horror fans, this already is problematic since it’s public knowledge to never mess with the dead “if you call out to one of the dead, all of them can hear you.” After the reading, Quinn begins to hear strange noises and confront demonic presence that only Elise can get rid of, obviously.
While the first forty-five minutes was solid with familiar yet exciting build up. The movie got tedious with its trite, two-year-old-predictable formula. Sure, it is fun to see veteran actress like Lin Shaye in a lead role; Stefanie Scott’s entertaining performance as Quinn; the comical ghost busters: Tucker and Specs’ funny bits. But, that’s not enough. The scenes at the ‘supernatural dimension’ could be explored further or at least modified to fit the prequel. I understand the demon hell is Insidious’ trademark, but wouldn’t it be better to learn more about this mysterious place than roaming around finding scary ghosts? I am also disappointed they didn’t even bother to explore Elise Rainier’s story, given this is after all HER movie. How did she become a psychic? What happened to her husband? Why is she so strong for an old woman? Leigh Whannell’s directorial debut is more or less adequate. There were some scenes that made me cover my ears and jumped up from my seat. My favourite being the first time we see the gooey, black footprints on the wooden floor. genuine thrill. Yet, with its lazy script and mundane outcome I can’t cheer and yelled “this prequel is so original, it beats the first Insidious”.
PS: Actor Dermot Mulroney is so bad here, I’m at a loss for words.