After a 1980s prologue which establishes a much-earlier connection between tormented father Josh Lambert and the spirits which dogged his young son in the present day, INSIDIOUS: CHAPTER 2 picks up precisely where the first one left off. Josh (Patrick Wilson) and Renai (Rose Byrne) and family (including Barbara Hershey as Josh's mother) express hope of resuming a "normal" existence, even though their initial outing left them with a dead psychic in one of their chairs.
Of COURSE things aren't over--we know that Josh brought something nasty back with him from the Further, and more things are going bump in the night, and they seem to be zeroing in on the children again, especially baby Kelly...
...oh, do I really need to go on? I mean, at ALL? We know that Specs and Tucker (the team of writer Leigh Whannell and Angus Sampson) are going to be back to lend a hand; that we're going to dig up some more deep, dark secrets; that we're going to return to the Eye-Tye horror flavored Further; that the ghosts will be quite creepy-looking; and that there'll be a good handful of effective jump scares.
It all happens exactly like that in a perfectly competent film that delivers what it promises without ever being necessary or even particularly special. The only real problem here is that director James Wan and Leigh Whannell have already explored this territory in the first INSIDIOUS and don't have anything new to offer (by contrast, THE CONJURING, as familiar as it was, represented fresh ground for Wan and he tackled it like it was nobody's business but his own: the result was a film that deserved every bit of the acclaim it received). Here, the revelations are far too predictable: in the Further, you wonder why they didn't just go all the way and give the "little girl" a big white ball to bounce; meanwhile, back in the "real" world, I guess they were sorry that they'd already given names to the boys, thus preventing a certain character from bellowing "DANNNNYYYYYYY!!!!!!!!" Get the idea?
Actually, you want something REALLY scary? This movie features one of those toddler-walker devices that lights up and plays music: it's used to startle the audience on more than one occasion... but this thing is SO loud and flashy that I would imagine that any toddler trapped inside it in real life would be yowling for release within five seconds...!!!
There will undoubtedly be a third INSIDIOUS as this one's making a mint; and the movie implies that it will continue the adventures of Specs and Tucker as opposed to the Lambert family. That's fine by me, because while I'm genuinely happy for Wan's success, I'd STILL rather watch a third INSIDIOUS than a seventh FAST AND FURIOUS. Sorry, just the truth.
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