Real talk: I was not a fan of Universal Pictures, Platinum Dunes and Blumhouse Productions' 2014 horror film, "Ouija." It just felt like every other PG-13 jump-scare cash-grab designed to lure teenagers into a dark movie theater.
However, with the release today of the official trailer for the inevitable sequel, Ouija: Origin of Evil, I am officially on board and excited for this October 21, 2016 release.
The reason why can be summed up in two words: Mike Flanagan.
Flanagan, the writer and director of "Absentia" and "Oculus," who also recently wrote and directed the Netflix exclusive "Hush," is a master of atmosphere. His films are legitimately scary and they rarely feature a neat and tiding happy ending.
Both "Absentia" and "Oculus" were brutal mind-screw movies that challenged viewers and featured fully formed characters who avoided the normal cliches that undermine so many of today's theatrical horror releases.
And, I have to admit, this trailer knocks it out of the park as far as offering just enough story to truly whet the appetite of genre fans. Flanagan's involvement, coupled with its prime Halloween season release date and major studio backing, might finally deliver him a box office hit, which would be a truly awesome step in the right direction.
Flanagan, along with a handful of other filmmakers like Ti West, Adam Wingard and Adrián García Bogliano, are making the kinds of movies that deserve to be seen and championed -- smart, bloody, thought-provoking genre films that often rival and surpass big-budget studio endeavors.
Check out the first trailer for Ouija: Origin of Evil and see if you agree.