Sinister (2012) (Movie Review)
Director: Scott Derrickson
True-crime writer Ellison Oswalt moves himself and his family in to a house where an horrific crime took place earlier, but his family doesn’t know. He is trying to find out more about the crime so he can write a new book about it to help his flailing career. He uses some “snuff” film that he finds which show the crimes to help in his research, but he soon finds more than he bargained for. There is a figure in each of the films, but who or what is it? As a result his family start to suffer as does he. Things take a turn for the worst. Will they survive?
Sinister is a film that has gained a lot of praise from the online horror community, but I myself seem a little lost on some of the praise. While on one hand we have a film that is well polished, packs some creepy visuals on screen, and gives us the time honored tradition of jump scares, it is also pretty much what you get from a mainstream horror that deals with ghost stories every time. Stop me if you’ve heard a movie described like this before, but this is a movie that starts off with a creepy scene on screen. From there we lay the ground work for the movie, start a very slow build that tries to gain steam, and then we finally cap it off with a big twist and one last big scare. That described 90% of mainstream horror ghost stories and it is the very same here for Sinister.
I do admit that the actors here are very good. I mean just look at our lead actor here, Ethan Hawke. The movie really doesn’t do anything wrong per say and I can get where the average movie goer could like it. I just think when you’ve seen as many horror films in a year that most of you reading this have seen that you’ll find it tame and lost in the fold. I think at heart Sinister wants to be the 2012 Insidious but it lacks the uniqueness and style. The jump scares aren’t even done as well as Insidious’ jump scares were. This film that drags its knuckles for its runtime gives us a very cool opening shot, a nasty final jump, but ultimately bored me in between with everything else.