With Insidious: The Red Door aka Insidious 5’s release right around the corner, it’s probably a great idea to re-watch the entire horror franchise in order to be fully prepared for the upcoming film. Not to mention, if you’re a fan of supernatural horror and want to immerse yourself in the horror genre, binge-watching the Insidious movies can enhance your viewing experience, especially if you do so in chronological order. Allow us to explain why.
First trailer for ‘Insidious: The Red Door.’
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By watching the Insidious film series in chronological order, you will be able to witness the progression of the haunting storyline, uncover the origins of key characters and gain a deeper understanding of the interconnectedness within the movies.
So, prepare yourself for a spine-tingling and suspenseful viewing experience as you explore the depths of the Insidious films. Get ready to enter a world of spookiness and experience supernatural spirits like never before!
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How to watch the ‘Insidious’ movies in order of chronology
Insidious: Chapter 3 (2015)
Insidious: Chapter 3 is a prequel to the events of the first two Insidious movies as well as Insidious: The Last Key, making it the first film in its chronological order. It serves as an origin story, exploring the early experiences of Elise Rainier and shedding light on the haunting legacy that would eventually impact the Lambert family in the subsequent films.
The story follows Quinn Brenner, a teenage girl grieving the loss of her mother. Desperate to contact her mother’s spirit, Quinn seeks the help of renowned psychic Elise Rainier. However, Elise has retired from her work due to a traumatic experience and refuses to assist Quinn. As a result, Elise tries contacting her mother on her own but unwittingly opens a portal to the spirit world, becoming the target of an evil entity that starts tormenting her and her family. When Quinn’s father once again seeks out Elise and requests her assistance, she eventually gets convinced to help and realises that the entity haunting Quinn is an evil spirit known as ‘The Man Who Can’t Breathe’, who seeks to possess her soul. Elise enlists the help of her fellow paranormal investigators, Specs and Tucker, to confront the entity and save Quinn. In the climactic battle between the forces of good and evil, the psychic confronts the malevolent spirit and her own fears in order to bring an end to the haunting.
IMDb rating: 6.1/10
Rotten Tomatoes score: 57 %
Insidious: The Last Key (2018)
The most-recent film in the horror franchise is the second Insidious movie to watch if you’re going by order of chronology.
Insidious: The Last Key focuses on the gifted parapsychologist Elise Rainier, who faces her own haunted past while investigating a haunting in her childhood home. The story begins with Elise receiving a call from a man named Ted Garza, who claims that his house in Five Keys, New Mexico is haunted. To her surprise, the address is the same as her childhood home where she suffered traumatic experiences. So, she decides to confront her past and assist Ted.
Returning to her hometown with her assistants Specs and Tucker, Elise begins to experience horrifying visions and encounters with malevolent spirits. She learns that the haunting in Ted’s house is connected to her own past, and the entity responsible is a demon known as ‘KeyFace.’ As Elise delves deeper into the investigation, she uncovers a hidden underground passage that leads to a secret room in her old home. In the room, she discovers disturbing artefacts and evidence of her own father’s abusive behaviour. The haunting intensifies and KeyFace targets Elise’s estranged brother Christian and his daughters, leading her to confront her fears to save her family.
IMDb rating: 5.7/10
Rotten Tomatoes score: 33 %
The first film of the franchise, Insidious follows the haunting experiences of the Lambert family. The story revolves around Josh and Renai Lambert, a couple who move into a new home with their three children. The family starts experiencing strange occurrences in the new house, with Renai hearing unexplained noises and witnessing eerie apparitions. Things take a turn for the worse when their son, Dalton, falls into a mysterious coma and the doctors are unable to explain his condition. As the family struggles to uncover the truth, they realise that their house is haunted by evil spirits.
Renai reaches out to a team of paranormal investigators who discover that Dalton is not in a coma but is rather trapped in a dark spiritual realm known as ‘The Further.’ The investigators enlist the help of Elise Rainier, a gifted psychic who communicates with the spirit world and reveals that the Lambert family has been targeted by an evil entity known as ‘The Lipstick-Faced Demon’ who wants to possess Dalton’s body and claim his soul. She then guides Josh on a journey into the spirit realm to rescue Dalton and uncover the dark history of the house.
The film ends with a cliffhanger, setting the stage for the sequel.
IMDb rating: 6.8/10
Rotten Tomatoes score: 66 %
Insidious: Chapter 2 (2013)
Insidious: Chapter 2 continues the story of the Lambert family’s terrifying experiences with the paranormal and begins right where the first one left off. After successfully rescuing their son Dalton from the dark spirit realm known as The Further, the Lamberts believe they can finally put their haunting ordeal behind them. However, that isn’t the case. Strange and unexplained occurrences begin happening in their new home, indicating that the evil forces are still present.
As Renai starts witnessing creepy encounters with the supernatural, she becomes convinced that the haunting is far from over. Meanwhile, her husband Josh starts exhibiting strange behaviour, leading the family to suspect that something is wrong with him. Elise Rainier, the gifted psychic from the first film, is brought back to help the family once again. As Elise delves deeper into the dark secrets of the Lambert family, she discovers that Josh has been haunted since childhood. Not just that, but the spirits that have been tormenting the family have a sinister plan to keep them trapped in the spirit world forever. With time running out, Elise, along with her fellow paranormal investigators, must find a way to rescue Josh and protect the Lambert family from the evil forces that threaten to consume them.
IMDb rating: 6.5/10
Rotten Tomatoes score: 38 %
Insidious: The Red Door (2023)
Insidious: The Red Door is the upcoming film in the Insidious franchise and is set to release in theatres on July 7. The story will take place a decade after the conclusion of the second movie and will see Josh Lambert embarking on a journey towards the eastern part of the country to drop off his son Dalton at a prestigious university. Little does he know that Dalton’s aspirations of a college experience will turn into a nightmare when the terrors from their past resurface. In order to put an end to the haunting and finally lay the demons to rest, both Josh and Dalton must venture back into the mysterious realm of The Further.
IMDb rating: TBD
Rotten Tomatoes score: TBD
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(Hero and feature image credits: Courtesy IMDb/ Insidious and Insidious 3)
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Answer: Start with Insidious: Chapter 3, followed by the first film Insidious, Insidious: Chapter 2 and finally, Insidious: The Last Key.
Answer: Yes, Insidious 1 is connected to Insidious 2. The latter is a direct sequel to the former.
Answer: Yes, all of the films in the Insidious franchise are connected and feature overlapping characters and storylines.