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Ouija: Origin of Evil

2016-10-28 09:33

What it's about:

In 1965 Los Angeles, a widowed mother and her two daughters add a new stunt to bolster their séance scam business and unwittingly invite authentic evil into their home. When the youngest daughter is overtaken by the merciless spirit, this small family confronts unthinkable fears to save her and send her possessor back to the other side.

What we thought:

It’s a surprise that a movie as awful as Ouija would ever get a prequel, but someone seemed adamant to create a good Ouija movie. Luckily for horror fans, award-winning horror director Mike Flanagan was the saviour to sink his teeth his into the spirit board story and delivered us from the evil memories of the first one. Ouija: Origin of Evil went The Conjuring route and gave us a horror that was exceptionally written, a cast that can act and a horrifying little girl that can compete with The Ring’s demon child.

Set in the late 60s, a widow and her daughters try to keep afloat by having fake séances for clients in their home. After they introduce the popular Ouija board to their act, the youngest daughter uses it to talk to her deceased father, but instead invites something else into the home.

Based on its predecessor, I had exceptionally low expectations for this prequel, but it ended up smashing the ball out of the park. It would seem there’s something about setting horror movies in the past that appears to help horror filmmakers make better movies. Flanagan not only directed it but also co-wrote the script with his Oculus partner Jeff Howard, and he has a flair for developing his characters much more substantially before any spooky business starts.

The story focuses more on a family that is suffering with grief rather than one that is haunted by demonic forces, and when the weird stuff start happening the subtle camerawork moves past jump scares and rather let’s the audience discover the creepiness in the background.

One of the key factors that helped make this horror a hit was the youngest cast member Lulu Wilson, who takes on the role of the possessed daughter. Her sweetness in the beginning becomes completely corrupted, and she pulls off the contrast expertly. Her scariest parts were not the full on demon modes but rather her scenes where she appears normal but her dialogue is horrifyingly creepy, added with cold stares and chilling smile. This kid can do horror better than most adults, added with a director who knows how to work with children, ending up with a great horror.

This Halloween, your cinema’s selection for horror is a goodie, as Ouija: Origin of Evil proves that terrible movies can have good sequels if the right people are on board. A classic horror that sticks to the basics, this is a great one to add to your horror collection. But, as with any horror, always remember the key rules: Don’t watch alone, don’t watch in a cemetery, and always say goodbye to the naughty spirits.

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