Saturday, January 6, 2018

Movie Review: Insidious: The Last Key

In a continuation that is long past its prime, Insidious follows the previously film in delivering another subpar story. The film begins with a young Elise Rainer (Ava Kolker) living near a prison with her brother Christian (Pierce Pope), her caring mother Audrey (Tessa Ferrer), and her abusive father Gerald (Josh Stewart). Elise's talent is already showing as she knows everything about each person who goes to the electric chair. Her father tries to beat the ability to see ghosts out of her but his punishment of locking her in the basement backfires when she opens the door to a demon realm. A key demon uses wire to hang Audrey and older Elise (Lin Shaye) is still traumatized. She wakes up a short while after the third chapter and receives a call from Ted Garza (Kirk Acevedo) who now lives in her childhood home. 

Elise agrees to take the case and reluctantly bring along Tucker (Angus Sampson) and Specs (Leigh Whanell). The ghost hunters drive to New Mexico and begin to investigate Elise's childhood home. Garza insists that Elise stay up in her old room where he claims the hauntings are taking place but Elise senses spirits everywhere. She explores the house while Specs and Tucker her watch her from the vehicle on a video screen. Elise encounters a woman who implores her to save another woman. Elise doesn't understand the message but she is determined to figure out. At the local diner, Elise meets her nieces Imogen (Caitlin Gerard) and Melissa (Spencer Locke). She tries to reconcile with her brother Christian (Bruce Davison) but he refuses to forgive her for leaving.

Elise remembers seeing a ghost and her father threatening her when she was sixteen before she left the house for good. The crew return to the house and Elise begins to search for the ghost again, this time with the help of Tucker and a powerful microphone. They follow the sound of a whistle into the basement where they find a girl held captive in a bomb shelter. Garza threatens them with a gun until Specs comes in and kills him. The police help clean up the mess but Christian returns to the house the next day with his daughters to find the whistle his mother gave him. As he searches, Melissa is tricked into the basement where the key monster attacks her and puts her in a coma while transporting her soul to the Further. 

Elise sees Melissa in the interrogation room in a scary little scene and she returns to the house. She knows that she must confront the ghost to find Melissa. She uncovers all the horrors her father committed under the influence of the demon and she is dragged into the further as well. Imogen reveals that she can go into the Further so Specs and Tucker hypnotize her to help save Elise. Imogen ventures into the prison cells where Elise and Melissa are held captvie by the key monster. Elise takes out her hatred on her father until she realizes the monster feeds off of the anger. Imogen and Elise fight back and right when it looks like they are losing, Elise's mother arrives to help them escape. 

Insidious: The Last Key is another sequel to a franchise that had already outlived its quality in the last installment. Like the ghosts of the film, the Inisidious series continues to go on though it doesn't have much of a purpose and only vaguely connected to the original films beyond Elise's story. Lin Shaye delivers a decent performance while Whannell and Sampson have more screen time to test out their humor. Whannell has given up directing but continues to write these stories wihtout the cleverness he has brought to some of his other original horror films. 

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