Ouija: Origin of Evil (2016) - Rotten Tomatoes

Ouija: Origin of Evil (2016)



Critic Consensus: Ouija: Origin of Evil swerves its franchise's planchette unexpectedly to YES with a surprisingly scary and dramatically satisfying follow-up to its lackluster predecessor.

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Movie Info

In this horror sequel, a game of Ouija leads to supernatural activity. Annalise Basso, Henry Thomas, Doug Jones, and Elizabeth Reaser star. Directed by Mike Flanagan.

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Annalise Basso
as Paulina "Lina" Zander
Elizabeth Reaser
as Alice Zander
Lulu Wilson
as Doris Zander
Henry Thomas
as Father Tom
Doug Jones
as Ghoul Marcus/Devil's Doctor
Kate Siegel
as Jenny Browning
Sam Anderson
as Mr. Browning
Michael Weaver
as Roger Zander
Ele Keats
as Ellie's Mom
Nina Mansker
as Female Ghoul
John Prosky
as Doctor Fuller
Lin Shaye
as Lina Zander (2013)
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News & Interviews for Ouija: Origin of Evil

Critic Reviews for Ouija: Origin of Evil

All Critics (102) | Top Critics (21)

Ouija giddily zips between haunted house thriller, exorcism drama and skillful period piece, all wrapped up in a neat and terrifying little bow.

October 24, 2016 | Rating: B | Full Review…
Top Critic

This is what you came to see, and the numerous gruesome horrors are rendered in enjoyable fashion.

October 21, 2016 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…
Top Critic

This is a prequel superior to its predecessor - we're not bored with board-game ghoulishness yet.

October 21, 2016 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…
Globe and Mail
Top Critic

Ouija: Origin of Evil is an interesting exercise in watching filmmakers try to mint a franchise out of basically nothing.

October 20, 2016 | Rating: C | Full Review…
Entertainment Weekly
Top Critic

Deliciously creepy, thanks largely to a terrific performance by the youngest of its stars.

October 20, 2016 | Full Review…
New York Times
Top Critic

Ouija: Origin of Evil is sadly derivative, totally stupid, routinely cheeseball and ultimately disappointing.

October 20, 2016 | Rating: 1.5/5 | Full Review…
Toronto Sun
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Ouija: Origin of Evil

Flanagan swerves up this movie prequel in such ways that it doesn't even needed to be tied-up to its predecessor. Origin Of Evil tells a more quality story that is surprisingly moving and can stand on it's own. An impressive work with the throwback 60s setting; a touch of realistic approach with the personification of the characters. This movie in the first place shouldn't even be recognized as a prequel at all. Instead, a new horror movie that carved itself out to the little rotten pieces of Quija [2014] and made itself a superior version. This movie shouldn't be recognized as a prequel on the first place, because it's just that great!

John Ross Dela Pena
John Ross Dela Pena

Super Reviewer


Ouija: Origin of Evil is a solid effort in the horror genre. While it isn't the scariest film, there is great tension and story put into the movie to balance it out. The cast is great especially Lulu Wilson. The tone and theme are pretty dark for parents who may think about taking their kids to this. However, Hasbro Studios finally has a successful movie on their hands after critical flops such as Battleship and Jem and the Holograms. Luckily for them, the scares are in the film and not at the box office.

Jacob Smith
Jacob Smith

Super Reviewer

This is definitely the year for horror films. When the announcement was made that a second Ouija film was in the works, I naturally just rolled my eyes, thinking what else is knew? Well, apparently a lot. Ouija: Origin of Evil improves over its predecessor in every conceivable way. Truthfully, I have grown tired of the way horror films are made nowadays, and while there are a few great ones out there, the same cheap thrills seem to be recycled over and over again. Director Mike Flanagan (of Oculus and Hush fame) presents this film in a way that makes it feel completely distant from its predecessor, while also borrowing elements and expanding on them. I can't believe I am talking this way about a sequel to a pretty terrible horror film, but anything is possible I guess. Here is how Ouija: Origin of Evil did for Ouija, what Fast Five did for the Fast & Furious franchise. There are very few franchise that are able to build off of a story that never worked in the first place. Ouija: Origin of Evil is one of those rare films that is not only better that its predecessor, but rejuvenates the franchise into something surprisingly great, all while still telling the same basic premise. Just like the first film, this one follows a family as they explore the Ouija board game. Instead of just communicating with the dead and having no real emotional heft like the first film, this is more of a look into lost family members. Running a fortune teller business from their home, the Zander family (who had lost their father figure in the past) soon discover the Ouija board, which allows them to communicate with him. Adding just enough emotional gravitas to the premise, while significantly improving its chilling imagery, everything about this film is improved. We can all admit, at least those who have seen the original Ouija, that this franchise needed to play every card in order to win back its audience. The first act of this film worried me, as many of the tropes used throughout the first film were being repeated. It almost felt like a remake, but with much better cinematography, a classic feel, and significantly improved performances and emotional weight. For those reasons, I could already tell the second and third acts would only get better from then on. Happily, I could not have been more right. Ouija: Origin of Evil, although its story is familiar, does its thrills in the third act better than any horror film in have seen in recent years. The funny thing about that statement is the fact that you have pretty much seen every scare before, but this film is able to pull it off with ease. Chills were sent down my spine on multiple occasions. That being said, even though this film puts a spin on a classic tale, that classic tale does feel overdone a few times throughout this film. From kids/creatures crawling up walls, to generic jump scares, to religious beliefs increasing the fear in everyone in the film, Ouija: Origin of Evil does not seem to be going for anything new. Having said that, each time one of these things occur, it is done in a way that still surprises you and the family aspect enhances every single moment of this film. I was tearing up as my spine was tingling, hoping everything was going to be okay. The biggest issue with this film is that you spend the entire duration hoping for something original to happen, due to the fact that the story seems too familiar. I went from loving to disliking this film on multiple occasions, but I guarantee if you know that going in, you may just end up calling this a great horror film. When it comes to selling a horror flick to a mainstream audience, they will chuckle at any opportunity given to them. During my showing of Ouija: Origin of Evil, a few people were audibly heard laughing out loud at some of the surprises or lines of dialogue given by the little girl, played by Lulu Wilson. As the film progressed, those chuckles quickly turned into gasps and you could have heard a pin drop in the theatre. It does take about 20-30 minutes to really get into this film, but by the second and third acts you are hooked in for a very, very good horror film. With improved direction, cinematography, its classic horror feel, and performances that elevate the over-arching family dynamic, Ouija: Origin of Evil is one of the best horror films of 2016, and that is actually saying something, seeing as there have been quite a few good ones. Very solid horror film that I recommend to any fan of the genre.

KJ Proulx
KJ Proulx

Super Reviewer

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