I'm not ashamed to admit that I loved the first Saw, written by Leigh Whannell and James Wan and directed by Wan. It was creepy, original and as I've often noted, one of the few modern horror movies that actually caught me off guard with its surprising twist ending. It may have spawned a series of increasingly lame sequels (and the exploitable "torture porn" movement), but the original film is actually quite good and well-deserving of the buzz it created at the 2004 Sundance Film Festival.
As is Whannell and Wan's underrated follow-up, Dead Silence. An original and creepy take on the evil ventriloquist trope starring "True Blood" alum Ryan Kwanten and "24" regular Bob Gunton, Dead Silence may well be lacking when it comes to comprehensive story-telling, but it manages to provide some genuinely creepy, atmospheric moments. And it features another twist that I didn't anticipate on my first viewing.
Wan would go on to direct the abysmal 2007 revenge thriller Death Sentence starring Kevin Bacon, while Whannell most recently voiced a character in Zack Snyder's 2010 CGI owl movie Legends of the Guardians.
Now, they've teamed up again for the possession-themed Insidious, about a young boy who has fallen into coma and his parents' attempts to rescue him from a supernatural realm. Starring Rose Byrne ("Damages;" 28 Weeks Later); Patrick Wilson (Watchmen) and Barbara Hershey (Black Swan); Insidious is currently boasting a whopping 75% on Rotten Tomatoes, which is exceptionally high for a Horror movie. While the universally bad reviews for Sucker Punch have convinced me to delay spending my hard-earned cash to see it (though D still wants to), I will have no qualms plunking down $11.00 for Insidious. Wan and Whannell have yet to disappoint me when they work together and with this cast, I can only imagine a grand time at my local multiplex.