The best £12 I spent on a cinema ticket in a long time.
You might have heard about Mike Flanagan if you are into crazy good scary movies, I for one was a lifelong fan from the moment I finished watching Oculus, and Hush cemented my love for this talented editor turned director... Who was even born in Salem! So when I read Flanagan was working on a prequel to the average but million dollar earning Ouija, I got über excited – and holy crap was I right, Ouija: Origin Of Evil is some scary shit!
Ouija: Origin Of Evil is the prequel of the Ouija (2014), set in 1965 where a widow and her two daughters scam people into talking with their deceased loved ones for a living, but when the mother has the brilliant idea to include a Ouija board in their little charade, the spirits start to show up for real and they are not as chummy as it may look from the start.
If you haven’t seen the first movie, don’t you worry, you haven’t missed much, but for the ones of you that did, don’t be surprised If some of this new story doesn’t 100% matches what we were told in Ouija.
Also don’t let that PG13 fool you, there is some eery stuff going on here, trust me, I'm not easily spooked, but this film gave me nightmares, and the jump scares are seriously unexpected, I literally leaped off my seat a couple of times. You also get a few laughs, that are always welcome in any type of film in my opinion... I mean, what more can you ask for?!
One of the reasons this movie works so well is that Flanagan and co writer of many years Jeff Howard wanted to come up with a story close to the classic scary flicks we all grew up loved being traumatised by The Changeling, The Exorcist and Poltergeist to name a few, Mikey even used antique lenses, zooms instead of steadicam, split-diopters (whatever that is) and other things that have fallen out of vogue... I know some of you like to know this stuff (I'm looking at you AJ!)
I have to spend a few words on the cast because they were all great: Elizabeth Reaser is a well known and loved actress and since she barely watches Horror movies, that was probably a different kind of day at the office for her, but still didn't get in the way of giving an amazing performance.
Lulu Wilson as Doris is the equally spine-chilling and adorable demon child and blew Mike Flanagan away during her audition. After he even stated that "she is a 8 year old going on 40".
Annalise Basso is perfect as the mood swinging teenager and of course you must remember her from Oculus.
Father Thomas is Henry Thomas AKA FUCKIN Elliott from E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial!!! I had a feeling he looked familiar! He will also be in Mike Flanagan’s next project for Netflix: the movie adaptation of the novel by Stephen King, Gerald’s Game - yup, this title will be a mouthful.
Kate Siegel, Mike Flanagan wife and the heroine in Hush has a small cameo that I didn’t spot – I give you a hint, she’s not a demon.
Contrary to what I said when I watched Ouija, after seeing Mike Flanagan's take on the franchise I don’t want to be near one of those evil boards ever in my life... Oh, and most importantly, learn from yours truly mistakes, stay for the end credit scene!!!