'Sinister' Review: Scares Aplenty if You Check Your Brain at the Door

Ethan Hawke in ‘Sinister’/Photo © 2011 Phil Caruso/Summit Entertainment
Ethan Hawke in ‘Sinister’/Photo © 2011 Phil Caruso/Summit Entertainment

After last night's screening of "Sinister" (see the spooky trailer in the playlist, below), I've got some good news and some bad news. The good news is that for once we've got an effectively scary horror attraction brewing in theaters just in time for Halloween. The bad news is that it covers the checklist of classic horror cliches so energetically that it's really more of a haunted-house ride than an actual film. Creepy-crawlies, scary children, torture scenes captured on home video, a meeting with an "occult crime" researcher, a power outage ... you won't be able to calm down until it's over, but you're also rolling your eyes because everyone's too idiotic to turn the lights on before wandering around the house at night. Ethan Hawke's character is a true crime author, he should totally know better.

Word on the street is that the upcoming "Prometheus" Blu-Ray release will untwist a lot of undies when it comes to the movie's plot holes. Gizmodo reports that the deleted/alternate scenes resolve a bunch of the most common complaints and reveal some pretty important stuff.  Take that, haters! I swear on the holy Xenomorph, if one more person makes a "Just run sideways!" joke, I am going to lose my eerily placid android composure.

Author/comedienne Julie Klausner finds seven major deficiencies in Lifetime's "Steel Magnolias" remake, faulting pretty much everything except the colorblind casting. While no one particularly expected it to be good, I think we all hoped it would at least be entertaining to watch. For a better evening in, get some copies of the play and perform it in your living room with your friends.

Coincidentally, a star from the original "Steel Magnolias" had a big week too: The Human Rights Campaign honored Sally Field with an "Ally for Equality" award -- presented by none other than her son Samuel (video in the playlist below), who is gay. Field's speech is an incredible testament to the power of a mother's love, but you have to admit: the idea of your mom living a ten-minute walk away is pretty upsetting, no matter how many Oscars she has.

  • Bree

    I was definitely on the fence about seeing “Sinister” so many horror movies these days fail to deliver a plot or scares. A few of my co-workers at DISH want to have a scary movie night and see “Sinister.” I have a problem with seeing scary movies in the theaters, since there is always someone who screams at every scene, or someone else yelling at the person to leave the kids and run out the door (me). I decided to wait until this movie is released on DVD. I have a Blockbuster @home account. The shipping is fast, and once I’m done with this movie I can return it to the store for another movie in my queue. I love Ethan Hawke, and glad to see him finally in a horror movie. I think this movie will be worth the wait.

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