Generally favorable reviews - based on 28 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 179 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: Ten years ago, tragedy struck the Russell family, leaving the lives of teenage siblings Tim and Kaylie forever changed when Tim was convicted of the brutal murder of their parents. Now in his 20s, Tim is newly released from protective custody and only wants to move on with his life; but Kaylie, still haunted by that fateful night, is convinced her parents’ deaths were caused by something else altogether: a malevolent supernatural force—unleashed through the Lasser Glass, an antique mirror in their childhood home. Determined to prove Tim’s innocence, Kaylie tracks down the mirror, only to learn similar deaths have befallen previous owners over the past century. With the mysterious entity now back in their hands, Tim and Kaylie soon find their hold on reality shattered by terrifying hallucinations, and realize, too late, that their childhood nightmare is beginning again. Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 17 out of 28
  2. Negative: 2 out of 28
  1. Reviewed by: Eric Kohn
    Apr 10, 2014
    In Oculus, the horror is at once deceptively simple and rooted in a deep, primal uneasiness. Its scariest aspects are universally familiar.
  2. Reviewed by: Richard Roeper
    Apr 10, 2014
    Oculus is one of the more elegant scary movies in recent memory.
  3. Reviewed by: James Rocchi
    Apr 9, 2014
    It’s clean, lean and smart.
  4. Reviewed by: Adam Nayman
    Apr 10, 2014
    How do you get revenge on an inanimate object? That’s the quandary facing the characters in Oculus, a deeply silly and mildly effective horror movie.
  5. Reviewed by: Mike Scott
    Apr 11, 2014
    Oculus is a time bomb of a psychological horror film.
  6. Reviewed by: Rene Rodriguez
    Apr 10, 2014
    One of the problems with director Mike Flanagan’s occasionally involving but ultimately dull thriller is that the whole movie hinges on a reflective piece of glass.
  7. Reviewed by: Joe Neumaier
    Apr 10, 2014
    The result: a dangerously cracked creep flick.

See all 28 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 41 out of 59
  2. Negative: 10 out of 59
  1. Apr 25, 2014
    After seeing oculus it was one of the greatest scary movie ever . the bad thing was the ending it really sucked . Know were on the edge of are seats and the thing are minds is "what the hell is gonna happen next ". Grade A+ Expand
  2. Sep 2, 2014
    "Oculus" is a very well-made horror film. It relies on a dark atmosphere rather than blood or jump scares, and the mirror is quite interesting and disturbing. The way the story is told, the past and the present being told at the same time and eventually interconnecting towards the end, is pretty cool, but it becomes somewhat confusing in the third act when the past and the present are blended together. It's overall a very satisfying, enjoyable, and interesting movie, and I highly recommend it. Expand
  3. Apr 12, 2014
    When most people hear the term "scary" these days, their mind instantly snaps to the thought of them being forced into shock by the ever-so expected jump scare. For those who are expecting such; meet Oculus, a movie which takes that expectation and chokes it into submission. Sure there are a couple jump scares implemented [none that caught me, sadly], but this is more of a psychological horror movie that requires you to use your brain to get the full effect. That's right: you're going to have to use your mind to enjoy this movie, and if you can't do that, you'd might as well see something else. Rio 2 also released today, if you needed a suggestion. Anyways...

    Oculus will make you think, bend your thoughts, freak you out a bit, then make you think some more, which is definitely something I'd like to see more often within horror media. It'd be nice if more of it didn't just scare me with freaky monster designs, or jump scares, then make me think "I wonder if that thing will move" or **** it's been quiet for too long... There's a scare coming." the whole time. Wondering if what was happening during the entire film was real or fake really hit it off for me, and the ending, ooh~, that ending, was definitely one of the better ones I've seen from the genre in quite some time.

    So is this movie actually scary? That depends on the kind of person you are. Is it "The scariest film since The Conjuring?" Hell no. That movie just about gave me a heart attack. However, Oculus is a great movie that does 'scary' in a way that feels more like how terrifying it is when you're about to finish a puzzle but can't find the last piece, than how terrifying it is when someone jumps at you from the shadows.
  4. Oct 12, 2014
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. A Shakespearean tragedy disguised as a psychological thriller / horror film. The movie has a strong impact if you suspend the expectation to be scared and shocked because it simply doesn't do that.

    Why is that? Because you catch on rather quickly that most of the movie is an illusion. The two main characters are reliving the trauma of their past in real time rather than flashing back to it. The director makes this perfectly obvious by interleaving the past and present, having the past versions of the characters occupy the same space and time as the adult characters. As a result, you realize you can't really believe anything you are seeing and fear arises from what we believe to be real not what we don't. There are a few of those jump out of your skin moments but they are entirely predictable as in someone turns around slowly and 7 Days chic is standing there - meh.

    The story though was heart-wrenching. You have boy, Tim, who inadvertently kills his father and (SPOILER ALERT) sister Kaylee because of this mirror thing from hell. A family is torn apart methodically by a sinister and malevolent force that has killed many others before. The scene at the end sticks in my mind like retina burn from an arc welder; Tim furiously pleading "It was the mirror" as he is driven away in a police cruiser and his sister materializing with the signature chromed eyes of the mirror's victims next to his parents with the same telltale trait in the window of the family's old house. Its at the moment when it really sinks in "Holy sh**, he actually killed his sister, he's the only one of his family still alive, he's going away to the big house, and no one will ever believe it wasn't his fault." No happy ending here. Its melancholy, depressing, and truly tragic.

    But not scary. And that is why I have to rate it down. It passes itself off as a horror thriller but its really a tragedy. Came for one thing got something else.
  5. Sep 7, 2014
    A film that literally makes you crazy, trying to reveal what happened and happened in the silent House away from nothing and close to everything (the typical atmosphere of American terror). Characters maybe fell short in personality and to say confusing conclusion; These two factors caused a slump in my score. But that does not desmerita it cause me a couple of real screams. Expand
  6. Sep 4, 2014
    Another typical no hope contemporary horror film where nobody wins-and everybody gets completely and utterly screwed beyond any hope of any victory whatsoever. Films like this might as well use hideous death metal soundtracks and offer the audience free suicide pills. These films are all made from 'formulas' as in all they think they need to make a good horror film is a young woman & a male of a similar age-and old house or seedy neighbourhood-plus satan. It makes it all work-in their minds. What you have here in this film is an ode to nihilism philosophy that I don't find very rewarding. I don't agree that victory isn't possible against evil but what these films say is victory against evil is unobtainable. Which creates psychological paralysis which can extend to physical paralysis-in the face of adversity. Expand
  7. Sep 17, 2014
    Oculus is like biting into a turd burger knowing full well it's going to taste like a big steamy dump. Sadly with that said I still watched the piece of garbage. It is bad. Very bad, terribly bad.

    I will not say much about this piece of filth as I'd rather not relive it. Acting is bad, plot is worse, and the scares are all wanna-be jump scares. It sucks. It gets a zero. End of review.

See all 59 User Reviews