From the first scene to the last, this movie is absolutely relentless. A flying off the tracks freight train of sheer terror that's completely gut punching in every way. I don't think I've seen a more shocking and truly horrifying movie in the last 10 years. This one is still haunting me days later.
Inside starts off with a pregnant woman who awakens from being unconsious as a result of a terrible car accident. She quickly finds out that her soon to be husband is dead and that she is the only survivor. Or so it seems.
Flash forward a couple of months and the pregnant woman is set to give birth just before Christmas. She's still mourning the loss of her husband and is clearly not looking forward to her upcoming delivery. In a way, it seems as though she resents the baby. When her doctor asks what will be the name of her new spawn, she lays in complete silence while the doctor finishes her sonogram. The doctor lets her know that she should come by the next morning as labor will more than likely be induced. She then talks to a coworker and he agrees to take her to the hospital the next day.
She decides to stay in on Christmas eve, ignoring requests from friends and family to come out and celebrate. As she settles in for the evening, the door bell rings. The female voice behind the door announces that her car has broken down and that she needs to use the phone. The pregnant woman feels a little uneasy, saying that her husband just went to bed and she doesn't want to disturb him and that she should go to another house. The voice responds 'I know your husband is dead' and its all down hill from here.
The pregnant woman calls the cops when she sees the woman standing outside, banging her head against the dining room window. They come over, tell her that the woman can't be found and that they will be by later to check in on her. After talking to her friend about the experience (we now see that the woman is in the house, her ghostly looking figure standing in the study) she decides to go to bed. The intruder is now exposed as dark haired, wearing a long black dress. She grabs a hefty pair of scissors and heads upstairs. As the pregnant woman sleeps, she straddles her and proceeds to stab her but instead only grazes, as the woman wakes up. They have a brief struggle and the pregnant woman heads into the bathroom where she locks herself in. The intruder makes it clear that she's not leaving the house until she gets her baby by any means necessary. This statement leads into a series of absolutely brutal killings.
The friend who is supposed to pick her up the next day comes over to check in on her and mistakes the intruder for the pregnant woman's mom. As he's talking to her, the pregnant woman's real mom comes over to check up as no one is answering the house phone. The intruder promptly disposes them, hacking away to death with her trusty pair of scissors. The cops also come back that night, and all 3 of them fall victim to the attacker. And with each passing kill, we are left with little hope that the pregnant woman will be spared. Its evident that the intruder is completely hellbent on achieving her end goal and nothing will stop her.
This movie works on multiple levels in creating a tense and altogether terrifying movie watching experience: the relentless nature of the woman, we have no idea why she wants the pregnant woman's baby (the director does a good job of throwing off the viewer when the cops come over for the 2nd time and you notice '666' is her address, but the man downstairs has nothing to do with the intruder), the totally brutal killings, the atmospheric soundtrack, and the 'real person' aspect of it. Do you ever watch a horror film like a Friday the 13th or Halloween with a Michael Myers or Jason and feel like the character is completely invincible? What played to such great effect in this film is the fact that the female intruder actually gets hurt during her spree. A slash to her arm, a knock over her head from a lamp, she even gets a gnarly a burn to her face. And she continues her quest with a focused determination as she fixes her wounds or puts an ice pack to her head. Her vulnerability makes things that much more terrifying. Not too mention the fact that all of this is happening to a pregnant woman. Why this isn't used more often in horror movies (and I have a feeling it might, see here) I have no idea. But the simple fact that this is happening to a pregnant woman who's carrying an innocent life automatically connects the viewer and emotionally invests them from the word 'go'. If you're not with this film, you don't have a pulse. I have nothing left to say other than this is a classic horror film and probably the best one I've seen in the last 10 years.
Cortez the Killer