Some rules are made to be broken, and others are worth sticking with. When it came to making “Insidious,” director James Wan and writer Leigh Whannell had a pretty damn good rule in place. In a behind-the-scenes video about the fright flick, Whannell says, “I think that jump scares have become overused in modern horror films. So one of the rules we had for this film, one of the little commandments I had when I was writing the film, is no false scares.”
Wan continues: “If you’re gonna go to such great effort to set the audience on edge and you’re building it up, I want my payoff to be real.” And Whannell adds: “If you’re going to put them through the trauma of a big scare, have it be real. Have it be the bad guy who’s making their presence known.”
As someone who appreciates a good jump scare and loathes cheap, cat-jumping-out-of-the-closet jump scares, I genuinely appreciate that Wan and Whannell followed this rule. It also explains why “Insidious” works as well as it does — the scares are genuine. No one is getting freaked out by a misunderstanding here — they’re getting scared of ghosts. Now the only question is: will the latest “Insidious” movie, “Insidious: The Red Door,” due out on July 7, 2023, follow the same rule? I guess we’ll find ou–BOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!! Got you.