Watch or Don’t: Oculus

Oculus avoided the easy cliches of haunted mirrors and delivered a tragic ending. The acting and filming were solid, but there is only so much time to partake in good horror, and this won’t make my short list.


A cursed mirror tricks people into seeing what it wants them to see. It causes a man to murder his wife, and his son murders him to defend his sister. Eleven years later the brother is released from a psychiatric facility and his sister persuades him to help her obtain the mirror. She wants to prove it is supernatural and absolve the family crimes.

Where It Went Wrong

  • Perception movies are frustrating, because you never what’s really happening, which makes investment tough.
  • They set about  filming the mirror causing things to happen. The footage reveals that they are doing things instead of the mirror, because the mirror is tricky. Here are the problems this raises:

a) I already believe their story, so I don’t care if others do, especially since the brother has already served his time.

b) While they have a good plan (I liked how prepared the sister was with timers and apples and so on), I expected them to try several tactics to fight the mirror. They didn’t, so it’s pathetic to watch them.

c) It was obvious that the mirror was indestructible and unable to be revealed. I don’t mind evil winning, but without any possible attempts to stop it, there’s little point to this particular story of the mirror.

  • There are no Big Q’s. Surely you could make a leap and say the film is asking us about the nature of perception and reality, but since the mirror was causing evil and things really happened that way, there’s not a lot to wonder about for very long. It’s also a worn-out Big Q.

What to Watch Instead

  • The Shining
  • The Conjuring
  • Mirrors (I haven’t seen this one, but I’m putting it on my list, because I heard it was better)
  • Secret Window

Verdict: DON’T

What did you think?

Which better mirror or cursed-object movies would you recommend?

What Others Thought

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