“Sinister”: A different kind of horror

This year has been a great year for horror films. We’ve been getting fantastic movies like “The Cabin in the Woods,” “The Woman in Black,” “The Possession” and “The Innkeepers” just to name a few. Now the new movie “Sinister” is getting some attention, as it was able to beat “Taken 2” and the Oscar-worthy “Argo” in the box office. This film is not only crushing the box office, but is also getting some relatively good reviews in the process.

The movie poster for Sinister. Photo from iverged.com

“Sinister” is directed and written by Scott Derrickson. One thing about Derrickson is he tries to take a scary idea and put a spin on it so it isn’t just about one specific thing. For example, he was the writer/director for “The Exorcism of Emily Rose.” The movie was not only concerned with exorcisms and demons, but it was also part courtroom drama that involved a trial for a good portion of the film. He attempts this style in “Sinister” as well.

He mixes the supernatural along with some found footage of grisly murders. It’s a great combination. It appeals to people who are more interested in demons or ghosts as well as people who like torturous killings or the trend of found footage that can also be seen in films like the “Paranormal Activity” series.

Horror movies have had to step up their game in recent years. It seems that people’s threshold for fear has increased past the simple slasher flick gimmicks and cheap acting. “Sinister” does have a few of those cliché pop-up scares, but is still scary nonetheless.

This movie excels at having an entertaining plot and interesting characters. Unfortunately, the trailer spoils quite a lot of the scary parts. It really takes the viewer out of the movie when they know what’s coming up.

It’s not as scary as it is disturbing. Many of the murders are shown on super eight footage. The old looking film plus the disturbing nature of the murders is chilling. That’s what the feel of this movie was — not scream out loud scary, but a lot more wincing and thinking, “that’s graphic.”

“Sinister” is a movie that people should see when they get the chance, but if you’ve seen the trailer, wait a few months until you forget what you’ve seen and catch it on DVD.

I would give this movie 3 out of 5 stars.