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"Oculus" Reviews/Discussion - 2014 Horror Challenge: Day 26

Old 09-27-14, 05:37 PM
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"Oculus" Reviews/Discussion - 2014 Horror Challenge: Day 26





Oculus (2013)



Selected by arw6040



IMDB ENTRY

ALYXSTARR LINK

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These "October Horror Movie Challenge" threads are for the discussion of the films in the 31 FILM SUBSET list.

The plan is for everyone to watch this film on the October day in the thread title, and to start discussing it the morning of the following day.
You may start discussion early if you want, but the preferred plan is for this to be as much of a group exercise as possible, with all of us viewing it "together" and discussing after.

Of course, you are totally encouraged to participate in these threads even if you haven't watched the movie on the designated day.
Even if you haven't watched it in years, or are not participating in the Horror Challenge, please feel free to chime in.



Spoiler tags are unnecessary in here, so if you have yet to see the film BEWARE OF SPOILERS.
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2014 DISCUSSION THREAD | 2014 LIST THREAD


Last edited by Chad; 10-05-14 at 01:54 PM.
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Old 10-10-14, 10:00 PM
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Re: "Oculus" Reviews/Discussion - 2014 Horror Challenge: Day 26

First there can never be enough haunted mirror movies, definitely an awesome theme.

Connecting parallels from the children and adult timelines was a brilliant idea. I wish it would have been more vague about the source being supernatural versus psychological.

Some of the framing shots that kept the mirror in the background during conversation were effecting giving the feeling that something was just about to happen.

It couldn't have been more telegraphed with the way the two characters were often shown in a trance standing before the mirror.

The totally under-rated Blair Witch Project 2: Book of Shadows visited these same ideas and, I think, did a better job with it.
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Old 10-17-14, 09:28 PM
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Re: "Oculus" Reviews/Discussion - 2014 Horror Challenge: Day 26

Didn't realize this was one of the 31 movies or I would have commented the other day when I watched it.

The movie was probably WWE studios best production to date but it was still unremarkable. It was predictable and bland with its delivery. My favorite part was the sister setting up the experiment going on and on about the history of the mirror, her acting was pretty damn good.
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Old 10-26-14, 06:22 AM
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Re: "Oculus" Reviews/Discussion - 2014 Horror Challenge: Day 26

Anyone found it anywhere besides Alyxstarr's link?
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Old 10-26-14, 08:53 AM
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Re: "Oculus" Reviews/Discussion - 2014 Horror Challenge: Day 26

Originally Posted by Trevor View Post
Anyone found it anywhere besides Alyxstarr's link?
Redbox might be your best bet.
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Old 10-26-14, 09:16 AM
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Re: "Oculus" Reviews/Discussion - 2014 Horror Challenge: Day 26

Originally Posted by Trevor View Post
Anyone found it anywhere besides Alyxstarr's link?
Originally Posted by Undeadcow View Post
Redbox might be your best bet.
I started playing around with those questionable sites that come up in all the YouTube videos claiming to be it; and one of them started playing without the usual account/credit card shadiness. It's one on genvideos.com if anyone else wants to go this route.
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Old 10-26-14, 10:40 PM
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Re: "Oculus" Reviews/Discussion - 2014 Horror Challenge: Day 26

Just watched this and boy did it make me feel uncomfortable with the way it messed with your mind which is a positive since that's what it was going for. I would hate not to have any control over your mind like that and think the concept is unique and creepy in that the mirror always wins and nothing you do can change that. This seems to be one of those movies you look back on realizing how well crafted the plot is but during can drive you crazy during watching it for the first time if you aren't in the right mood for it.
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Old 10-26-14, 10:51 PM
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Re: "Oculus" Reviews/Discussion - 2014 Horror Challenge: Day 26

I hadn't realised it was a subset pick, but I happened to watch it anyway. I hadn't read anything about it beforehand because I just dismissed it, so went in knowing absolutely nothing about it except that Karen Gillan was in it. Although it was very flawed, I found it enjoyable. The tension was high, the concept was really interesting and it kept me on the edge of my seat. I did feel like there was so much going on that the narrative felt muddled (going back and forth between the past and present and the constant tricks), which somehow both added to the experience and detracted from it. Could've done with a tad more subtlety, a better actor for the brother (Gillan was very good though) and though I thought the ending was alright (because there was no resolution), I think a more ambiguous ending might've worked better. It's my second favourite first time viewing of the challenge so far, so it was a pleasant little surprise that I'd definitely recommend.
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Old 10-26-14, 10:55 PM
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Re: "Oculus" Reviews/Discussion - 2014 Horror Challenge: Day 26

For me, Oculus started really well, but the constant flipping back and forth between eleven years ago and present day began to get old at about an hour in. At eighty minutes in, I had really had quite enough, thank you, and by eighty-five minutes in I was beginning to shoot hate rays at the TV with my eyes.

It reminded me of another film that started well and then fell completely apart--1408. Great setup, but it, like Oculus, lost control of the narrative about an hour in and never regained its footing.

My thoughts: I didn't exactly hate it, but I didn't like it, either--which seems to be my usual response to anything produced by Jason Blum (except for maybe the first Paranormal Activity film).

EDIT: I just watched the short film that Oculus was based on, and...it's not very good, either. I had thought that if Oculus had stuck to one timeline or another, it would have been better, but the short proved me wrong.

Here it is, if you want to watch it:



EDIT #2: Just in case anyone didn't realize it...

- 21 years =

Last edited by rbrown498; 10-27-14 at 07:36 AM.
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Old 10-28-14, 07:13 AM
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Re: "Oculus" Reviews/Discussion - 2014 Horror Challenge: Day 26

I am glad I am not the only one who disliked the constant jumping back and forth between time lines. I felt it detracted more than helped. While it was interesting to see the two storylines intersecting, there was WAY too much back and forth. Stick with one story or the other. Yeah, it's cool to see the character watch himself 10 years ago but doing it every few seconds gets old very quickly.

The movie definitively had a nice atmosphere and some seriously spooky parts. For whatever reason, the "woman looking Ringu/Grudge" characters always creep the fuck out of me no matter what the movie is. And children being terrorized by their parents is always disturbing and this movie was no exception. I really felt sorry for the kids in their situation and felt the young girl actor did a very good job.

As Undeadcow mentioned earlier, the ending was telegraphed way too easily and honestly, you kind of knew it was going to go down that way as soon as they showed how the anchor worked. I enjoyed the aspects of them thinking they were performing an action when in actuality, they weren't doing it at all. It can really mess with your head and I always wonder if a truly mentally ill person experiences something like that in their day to day life.

My rating: ***1/2 out of *****
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Old 10-28-14, 08:00 AM
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Re: "Oculus" Reviews/Discussion - 2014 Horror Challenge: Day 26

The constant time shifting was a pain in the butt; but at least it kept me concentrating more than some films have this month. I think I've fallen asleep on and had to restart five films already.
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