104 Min | Horror | June 2014
IMDB Rating: 7.0
Director: Mike Flanagan
Starring: Karen Gillan, Brenton Thwaites, Katee Sackhoff
Oculus Review: Oculus is one of the more complex story lines in recent horror films. Without divulging too many details, the plot weaves the past and the present together into one (arguably) cohesive story. In a nutshell Brother and sister team up to defeat the malevolent forces contained in the mirror, the mirror that once was the source of tragedy for their family. Yes this past meets present has been done innumerable times, but not many recent films have made the effort to interlace past and present to this extent. One of the few that have managed to do it, and do it very well, has been Insidious part 2.
While the editing was top notch, the story became overworked by the time the movie reached the second half. This is a clear example of Keep-It-Simple-Stupid. Where the first 45 minutes had good build up and intrigue, staying steady on its course to the main event, the remainder of Oculus eventually became a mash up of time weaves, flashbacks, reality/unreality hallucinations, etc. It became overworked to the point that the viewer was pulled out of the story. By nature, you have to suspend disbelief to enjoy a horror film. However even horror films can cross over from intrigue to silliness with the slightest misstep. Unfortunately Oculus has made this mistake. This is unfortunate because with just a little more editing down.
This is not to say it’s not worth the cost of admission. By no means is it a bad film. It’s a perfectly decent film. However the distinction here is that it is decent, when it could have been elevated to the level of good with just a few less twists and turns. Final verdict, Silly at times and the story of Oculus becomes overkill. But intriguing and outright scary in some scenes.