Oculus (2013): This Does Not Help Me Get More Comfortable Around Mirrors

I had been searching for a good horror movie. One that would scare me and leave me afraid to sleep at night. A horror movie.

Oculus was not it.

I had high hopes for this. The trailer looked pretty good. Also, I really liked the tagline.

Not that I didn’t enjoy it. It was a good amount of suspense, not entirely predictable, and a very interesting way of storytelling that I will get into.

Also, the main characters were not stupid for once.

I had high hopes for this movie, especially since it was about a mirror. I thought it would really scare me, because I am already uncomfortable around mirrors.

It all started when I watched Mirrors.

At least I think it was this movie. To be honest, I was young and I’m not entirely sure it was actually this particular one.

I was nine years old and I knew that I scared easily so i didn’t really want to watch, but all the other older kids were going to, and even my younger brother was going to. So there was no way I was going to chicken out.

Turns out, not a good idea.

Because it made me afraid to look in a mirror for three weeks. And even after that (like today) I’m slightly uncomfortable around mirrors when I’m alone and it’s dark and the wind howls woefully outside and the branches of the flower bushes outside scratch the window. And I refuse to sleep in a room with a mirror.

So gist of the story: I don’t like mirrors.

I was excited for Oculus.

But afterwards, other than the slight apprehension at walking around in a dark room or uncomfortable feeling that there was something under the bed, I was okay. I just wasn’t scared anymore. Not even the next night.

Granted, a lot of the scenes did really creep me out. Especially the whole mirrors-for-eyes thing.

Granted, I was slightly disappointed that this didn’t become the horror movie of my life, but I still appreciated the movie. It was a fairly good movie. The plot was interesting enough (although there’s really not all that much variation in horror movies, other than oh this evil force is trying to kill me and I have to run away or find a way to get rid of it).

I did really like the parallelism that was carefully expressed through the different timelines. I believe the time contrast was nine or eleven years, so just the different actors made the jump between times pretty clear and it was well done, with smooth transitions.

This is the characters in the present-day, when they’re in their twenties. And Maleficent‘s Prince Philip (Brenton Thwaites) is still cute.

But I really liked the crack in the bottom of the mirror.

Sorry, I haven’t figured out how to crop pictures on here yet, but you can see that line in the bottom corner of the mirror, towards the right.

I actually found this crack really meaningful. But to discuss that would mean having to give away spoilers and I don’t want to do that. So after you watch this, if you do, I hope you know what I’m talking about.

Conclusion: Oculus was able to show a more interesting (although it is still on the typical side of things–I totally called that lightbulb/apple scene) storyline with appreciative parallelism shown through two alternating timelines. Bonus points for creep scenes. And the very cute Brenton Thwaites. 6.5/10.


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