Well I’ve literally just got back from seeing Oculus. And I’m happy.
I was pleasantly surprised by Director Mike Flanagan’s Absentia and with what I had seen so far unintentionally of Oculus I was very much looking forward to watching this movie. I wasn’t disappointed.
Oculus is a build-up of a twisted mind screw movie.
It starts with introducing us to two siblings Kaylie and Tim Russell who are witness to and unwillingly involved within household tragedies that see their mother and father both dead and 10 year old Tim incarcerated in an institution. Over a decade later Tim is released and Kaylie wants to help him get back on track, reminding him of a promise they both made all those years ago before he was dragged away by officials. A deal a recuperated Tim isn’t so sure about now having had time to rationalize the situation they had found themselves in.
It intertwines the present and the past seamlessly throughout the movie and it very much adds to the story rather than making it too confusing or unnecessary. As a viewer you’re never quite certain whether what you’re seeing on the screen is real or false and occasionally past, or present, creating an unsettling but exciting horror film.
I’ve noticed Flanagan doesn’t bludgeon viewers over the head with horror but plays with the viewer’s head in effective ways.
The film is moderately paced, with the story pretty typical- an evil object or being within a house taking over someone within that household but the way the story is told is refreshing and different, an original for me. The acting is brilliant by all (my personal favorite being a young Kaylie played by Annalise Basso, and an older Kaylie played by Karen Gillan from the Doctor Who franchise) and there are a good few jumpy bits, squirmy scenes and freaky faces.
I really enjoyed Oculus and how it was equally effective in its subtle moments as it was in the more intense ones. Its mystery gradually held your attention until it was ready to let you have it… and for me, the ending did exactly that.
Oculus is a better than average, mind-bender horror movie and I would definitely recommend it to any dedicated horror fans.
WICKED RATING: 7/10 [usr 7]
Director: Mike Flanagan
Writer(s): Mike Flanagan, Jeff Howard, Jeff Seidman
Stars: Karen Gillian, Brenton Thwaites, Katee Sackhoff, Rory Cochrane, Annalise Basso, Garrett Ryan
Studio/ Production Co: Intrepid Pictures, Blumhouse Productions, WWE Studios
Length: 104 mins
Sub-Genre: Demons, Ghosts, Haunted House