My notes on Insidious: The Last Key:

1. One could easily say that the return of parapsychologist Elise Rainier (Lin Shaye) on yet another tired installment of this horror franchise was both a blessing and a curse.

Shaye would forever be that badly-tanned old neighbor smooching a pooch in There’s Something About Mary, but she brought a certain amount of grace and seriousness usually missing in this genre. On the other hand, she was also playing a character that was killed at the end of the very first film so there wasn’t really any sense of danger in this prequel, considering what you already knew about her fate.

2. It would have been more forgivable if this movie was at least scary, but it basically recycled most of the jump scares that were already used in the first three films (the scene where Darth Maul suddenly showed up on the shoulder of another character was utilized here again to lesser effect). I had more fun watching the reactions of people inside the theater, especially this group of women seated two rows in front of us. One kept loudly asking questions that made it more obvious she had her eyes covered the entire time (“Anong nangyari? Bakit sila sumigaw?”). Hala siya, sayang naman ang bayad, Ate.

3. So for an entire hour we weren’t really seeing ghosts from the Further and they were real victims abducted by these monster men? How many times did the writers watch Don’t Breathe?

4. “I don’t have memories of that place. I have scars.” Also, literal scars on her back. I wanted to hug Elise after that scene. I just couldn’t stand this type of torture for an old lady.

It reminded me of the time I cried watching Gloria Romero suffer at the hands of her undead son Gabby Concepcion in Huwag Kang Hahalik sa Diablo. Leave these old women alone!!

On a different note, why did the actor that played Elise’s younger brother Christian look so much older than her?

5. I laughed so hard when the demon literally had a key for fingers and started locking up the neck and chest of some characters. I waited for the end credits to check its name (hey, the last one was called Lipstick-Face) and surprise, surprise it was named Key Face.

6. Those bumbling sidekicks were painfully unfunny (“She’s psychic. We’re sidekicks.”). Walang dulot at all. This horror movie needed more victims and it was a shame that these two had to stay alive for continuity reasons. Their presence alone made me want to buy an emergency whistle as well.

Rating: ★★☆☆☆