The trailer for The Conjuring was excellent. It was brilliantly creepy and I was instantly sold. The Paranormal Activity franchise has taught me that horror films have a habit of producing effective trailers but poor films. I decided to ignore this and deployed extreme levels of excitement.
James Wan gave us Insidious. I was not expecting disappointment.
PLOT: After the Perron family move into a remote old house Carolyn (Lili Taylor), her husband Roger (Ron Livingston) and their five daughters start to experience strange happenings at night. As the noises and terror escalates they contact paranormal investigators Ed (Patrick Wilson) and Lorraine (Vera Farmiga) Warren. The Warrens discover that the Perron family is being haunted by a demon and it becomes a race against time to perform an exorcism before someone gets seriously hurt. END PLOT
Creaking floorboards, drafts and exploding light bulbs are a staple part of any haunted house. If you throw in a sceptical father, a barking dog and a kid with an imaginary friend and you essentially have a full house of horror clichés. The Conjuring has all of these in heavy doses but the film is so well put together that absolutely everything about it feels original….and terrifying.
The film starts out strong with a very tense opening section which focuses on Annabel and steadily builds on it until the finale. There is no drop in pace or dud scenes.
The Conjuring is set in the 1970’s and although it gave Farmiga some wonderfully over the top blouses I am not sure what it brought to the film. At the end of the day it doesn't really matter.
Purples frills. More terrifying than crocs and Tom Cruise. All three together is too horrifying to contemplate
Lili Taylor is excellent as Carolyn Perron and the five young actors all hold their own which helps to elevate the film. Ron Livingston as Roger Perron isn’t given much to do but it’s only a minor quibble.
The stars of the show are Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga. Wilson is becoming a horror favourite after his performance in Insidious and is rapidly creeping up my list of actors I want to hug. He is currently third behind The Rock and Liev Schreiber.
Wilson and Farmiga have great chemistry and their sweet husband and wife routine in an exorcism setting made for great viewing.
The Conjuring is a scary film and it is impressive that it does this with very little blood and gore. I always say that the less blood in a horror movie the scarier it is. The Conjuring has finally proven my point.
James Wan has created a genuinely unsettling film and more intriguingly may have started a very decent franchise. The Conjuring gets 8.5/10.
The Conjuring 2 has already been announced and I can’t pretend to be anything less than uber excited.
The Conjuring 2 could be the scariest film of all time! Annabel will be a regular nightmare visitor