‘Sinister’ is a frightening new thriller from the producer of the ‘Paranormal Activity’ films and the writer-director of ‘The… Read More


This Friday, the surprisingly spooky “Sinister” creeps into theaters.

Here, Ethan Hawke sheds his dreamy “Before Sunrise” exterior and stars as a crime journalist who relocates his family into a house where the previous tenants were murdered. While investigating the possessions of the deceased family, he discovers a supernatural demon that lives inside old pictures and home movies — and may threaten his family next.

Can Hawke bring about a new horror classic? Take a look at what the critics think about “Sinister.”


  • Mary F. Pols (TIME Magazine)

    The movie is full of feints, shocks and scenes of particularly perverse violence, but nothing about it is fresh enough to haunt you in the night. <a href=””>It’s predictable</a>.

  • James Berardinelli (ReelViews)

    In true horror movie tradition, characters do things that are head-scratchingly dumb. Once you accept those logic-defying moments, <a href=”″>the movie works with diabolical effectiveness</a>.

  • Kathleen Murphy (MSN Movies)

    Sinister’ may make you jump at predictable intervals, <a href=””>but it never rattles your existential certainties the way truly subversive horror does</a>.

  • Roger Ebert (Chicago Sun-Times)

    “Sinister” is an undeniably scary movie, <a href=”″>with performances adding enough human interest to give depth to the basic building blocks of horror</a>.

  • Scott Tobias (AV Club)

    An occult thriller that scares <a href=”,86511/”>with an absolute relentlessness</a>.

  • Nick McCarthy (Slant Magazine)

    Ellison’s fascination with celluloid to solve a crime recalls Antonioni’s Blowup, <a href=”″>but Scott Derrickson is unable to conjure an aura that isn’t as transparent and weightless as a ghost</a>.

  • John DeFore (Hollywood Reporter)

    Enjoyably edgy fright flick meshes serial-killer and <a href=”″>haunted house ingredients</a>.

  • Anthony Lane (New Yorker)

    Sinister is a joyless ride, and its frights are too contrived to be surprising, yet somewhere, stashed in the attic, <a href=””>is a much less foolish film with Hawke at its heart</a>.

  • Nick Pinkerton (Village Voice)

    A proficient, <a href=””>rattling horror story</a>.

  • Christopher Tookey (Daily Mail [UK])

    Sinister does <a href=”–critic-left-whimpering-Sinister.html”>everything right</a>.