Movie Review: Insidious: The Last Key (2018)

The fourth chapter in the Insidious franchise, Insidious: The Last Key is a horror movie directed by Adam Robitel (Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension, The Taking of Deborah Logan). Released in 2018, the movie takes place between the third and first movies, and tells the tale of parapsychologist Elise Rainier’s (Lin Shaye) early life, including the first demon she encountered, the horrific Key Face (yes, I laughed at the name too). Elise’s two colleagues Tucker and Specs (Angus Sampson and Leigh Whannell, respectively) are along for the ride, when a client calls for help about a demon, calling from Elise’s childhood home.

+ Javier Botet’s role as Key Face (name notwithstanding) is again quite scary. I’ve mentioned before that he has been able to carve out a solid niche for himself in horror movies, due his Marfan syndrome, and that is once again true here I’m never really scared by ‘scary faces’, or bloodied mouths or all that hokey stuff; it’s the ‘unnatural’ long limbs that always get me. Please note that is absolutely not an insult to Botet, either
+ Josh Stewart and Kirk Acevedo are two of my favourite ‘oh it’s that guy’ actors, and they both show up here. Stewart (The Dark Knight Rises) plays Elise’s “all around bad person” father, whilst Acevedo (Oz, Arrow season 5) has a more substantial role as the client who calls Elise, Tucker and Specs for help. I enjoyed them both in their mostly limited roles
+ there was one short scene, involving Elise in an air vent, that did have one genuinely shocking ‘wham shot’. I was impressed that so deep into a movie I was not enjoying that the movie still made me do a little gasp

I didn’t quite understand why the monster was not called Key Hand, all things considered.

– a few creepy Key Face movements aside, there as not much on offer in the way of scares in this movie. It became so predictable that the pattern would be silence, a loud noise with no jump scare, a second to cool down and THEN the jump scare that it was not worth letting myself get into the ‘scary zone’. I was bored by how formulaic it was, more than anything
– before watching this, I honestly couldn’t remember if this was the movie series with the alternate demon universe, the evil nun or the haunted home movies. It was in fact the first, but even after having watched this movie now I just don’t really care to ever have to see any more, and I still couldn’t really tell you what happened in the other movies. Maybe all of these Conjuring, Sinister, Insidious and Paranormal Activity movies should do some sort of big crossover so I only have to sit through one of these movies a year

Should you see this film: It is never a good sign, in my mind, when horror movies have to resort to prequels and then mid-quels to keep a series going. Sometimes it works, (see: Ouija: Origin of Evil), but in general, and in this case too, if you need to go back to move forward, maybe you should just stop altogether.


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