REVIEW: “Sinister” is disturbing but lackluster

By Jon Scales

Jon Scales (Photo by Mike Ayers)

In a two-hour horror flick, three things must be implemented to create a suspenseful atmosphere in the theatre: an engaging concept, ample amount of frightening moments and a mystery that leaves you hanging on the edge of your seat.

While these are certainly admirable qualities for a horror flick, there used be to a lot more depth in thriller movies than there are now. Summit Entertainment’s “Sinister” is the perfect example of this.
“Sinister,” directed by Scott Derrickson, is about an author, played by Ethan Hawke (“Daybreakers”), who moves to a crime-befouled town in search of the inspiration for his next novel.

Of course, as horror archetype necessitates, he gets more than he bargained for. As he investigates the murder of the family who used to occupy his new home, he discovers a nationwide cult that threatens him and his family’s life.

"Sinister" stars Ethan Hawke. Photo provided by

Before you decide to indulge in yet another horror flick for the sake of being creeped out around Halloween, allow me to forewarn you about “Sinister.”

This thriller, though it contains all three of the necessary characteristics stated above, fails to delve any deeper. The plot doesn’t stand apart from any other modern day horror films, but it’s content pushed this movie to a different level. The film’s unnecessarily desensitized gore outweighed whatever redeemable qualities this story had. Several scenes of sadistic murders pollute the film.

It’s always fun to go to the theatre during this season to be scared. Horror flicks are thrilling rides. This ride just happened to leave me unsatisfied and haunted by it’s carnage. “Sinister” is hardly worth your time, let alone your stomach.

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