Insidious: Chapter 2 (2013)

insidious chapter 2 poster rose byrne
4.0 Overall Score
Story: 3/10
Acting: 6/10
Visuals: 6/10

Good looking and potential for scares

Doesn't have the edge of the first film, dull and slow

Movie Info

Movie Name:  Insidious:  Chapter 2

Studio:  Film District/Stage 6 Films/Entertainment One

Genre(s):  Horror

Release Date(s):  September 13, 2013

MPAA Rating:  PG-13


That’s right…I’ll swallow your soul!

Josh Lambert (Patrick Wilson) has survived his encounter with the spirit world, but unknown to his wife Renai (Rose Byrne) and his family, Josh is no longer Josh.  Moving in with Josh’s mother (Barbara Hershey), the old woman who haunted Josh in his childhood has taken control of his body and it is up to Renai and psychic researchers Carl (Steve Coulter), Specs (Leigh Wannell), and Tucker (Angus Sampson) to free him from the evil.  With the aid of the spirit of the deceased Elise (Lin Shaye), Renai is going to learn who the woman is and what she really wants.

Directed by James Wan, Insidious:  Chapter 2 is a follow-up to the surprise hit Insidious from 2010.  The movie overachieved at the box office but was met with mixed reviews from critics.


That’s right…I’m crazy!!!

I liked certain aspects of Insidious, but largely found the first film to be a bit of a failure in the second half.  With a lot of the creepiness eliminated by the dispatching of the Darth Maul looking demon and the less scary old woman, I didn’t have much hope for Insidious:  Chapter 2.  I wish I could say I was wrong, but I found this movie more tedious than the first.

The problem with both Insidious and its sequel is that I see a lot of potential in them.  All the elements are there to make a scary movie, but the movie just fails to scare.  You get a garbled tale of Parker and his mother and the further adventures of the goofy Ghostbuster wannabes.  It is like watching The X-Files’ Lone Gunmen fight ghosts…and it really takes away from any horror potential.  The story drags and rarely has any scary peaks that keeps you on edge.


Insidious…out to prove old people are scary killers

The acting for the movie is so-so.  I am a fan of Rose Byrne and think she does a decent job with what she has to work with, but Patrick Wilson almost always seems the same in all of these horror films.  I really am not a fan of Angus Sampson and Leigh Whannell’s characters and was pretty disappointed to see them back…Lin Shaye was ok in the first one, but her return in this film seems forced.

Visually, the movie does do some nice things.  Wan has an eye for scary, but the stories often hold him back.  I would like to see him work on a better written horror film (maybe a “classy” film in the lines of The Exorcist or Rosemary’s Baby) to see his full potential as a horror director.  I just don’t like this story.

Insidious:  Chapter 2 underwhelms more than Insidious.  I am a glutton for punishment and keep going back for more and the promise of the last scene once again gives me hope for the next entry.  A final shot with the ghost of Elise seeing something (also a horrible and poorly executed cliffhanger) indicates that the actually creepy red demon (knicknamed the Lipstick-Face Demon) could be back.  Insidious:  Chapter 2 was followed by Insidious:  Chapter 3 in 2015.

Related Links:

Insidious (2010)

Insidious:  Chapter 3 (2015)

Insidious:  The Last Key (2018)

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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