I love me a good haunted house movie and when you add in the talents of James Wan, Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga, you know The Conjuring was going to be right up my alley and boy what a dark and scary alley it was. So, let’s conjure up a good review together, by reading on…
Short nitty-gritty plot description from IMDb is as follows: Paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren work to help a family terrorized by a dark presence in their farmhouse.
The Conjuring is in fact based on true events (yes, even the creepy Annabelle doll is real, although it was a Raggedy Ann doll and not some creepy as shit porcelain doll), how true they are, I can’t tell you. I didn’t do any sort of research on the characters of Ed and Lorrain Warren (played by Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga, respectively), but I have heard from several people, that these are real people and have done real investigations, even investigating the infamous Long Island haunting, the Amityville house. I feel like a bad horror fan not knowing anything more about them, but with the constant dreck of paranormal shows on TV, I tend to avoid any sort of ghost investigators and their stories. So, with those useless facts out of the way, what is The Conjuring all about.
The Perron family before things got really bad.
The Conjuring follows the Perron family, as they move into an old farmhouse in Harrisville, Rhode Island, in 1971. It isn’t long before things start going bump in the night, weird bruises form on the wife, Carolyn, played by Lili Taylor and kids are sleepwalking and seeing creepy shit all around the house. Also, don’t get me started on the basement, which encompasses some of the most haunting stuff you’ll see in this movie. Carolyn is worrying for her family, so she gets a hold of the Warren’s and pleads for them to help her with their haunting problems. They agree and head on over to the house, to see if it’s real or not. Well folks, this shit is real and it gets terrifying.
The Warren’s (Patrick Wilson, Vera Farmiga) interviewing the Perron’s (Ron Livingston, Lily Taylor)
That’s all I’m going to tell you about the movie, I don’t want to go spoiling anything. So, is the movie scary you ask? Is the hype really all it’s cracked up to be? Well, in a way, yes and no. Yes, the movie will drive some goosebumps out of you and make you jump several times, thanks to those wonderful jump scares I so dearly love. However, this isn’t a movie that’s going to make the diehard horror fans piss their pants in fear, but what it is going to do, is scare the bejesus out of your wife/husband, or girlfriend/boyfriend, or anyone else that isn’t hardened by years of horror movies under their belts. So, even though the above sounds like a negative, it really isn’t, as you can’t fault a horror movie for only giving hardened horror vets the goosebumps. That’s a pretty damn good feat if you ask me and if you ask my wife, who is still covering her eyes a day later, the movie excelled wonderfully.
The creepy Annabelle doll keeping an evil eye on things.
The Conjuring does a fantastic job at capturing that 70’s horror movie vibe. Even the opening credits title, screams 70’s horror movie! It’s also wonderfully shot, with tricky camera angels messing with your head and doing a great job at unsettling you. The music will also drive home the point, that this is going to be a wild and scary ride. The movie also doesn’t resort to shaky cam and does a superb job at keeping that camera steady, when need be.
Even the wonderful handheld camera sequence in the basement, was pretty steady.
The Conjuring comes out on top as being an edge of your seat, cover your eyes in fear, horror movie. The most hardened horror fans might scoff at the idea that they’ll find anything scary in the movie, but I’m pretty sure I can guarantee a few scenes will creep you out. So, if your in the mood for a movie that’s well acted, well shot and deserving of raising the hair the on the back of your neck, give The Conjuring a watch. You won’t be sorry (although my wife is still a little mad at me for taking her to it).