Thursday, June 9, 2016

Movie Review: The Conjuring 2

I was greatly impressed with this horror sequel, nothing entertained and frightened me this much in a long time. As far as sequels go, especially horror sequels, this movie is beyond comparison. There are some very minor flaws of special effects but these take nothing away from the terror and the great story of the Warrens' next adventure. Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga return as Ed and Lorraine Warren and are more comfortable in their roles as the paranormal investigators. James Wan returns with his great skill to the director's chair

The story begins with a short recounting of their most famous case, the Amityville house. This sets up the spooky demonic nun that has graced the trailers for the last few weeks. This nun is freaky and will haunt my nightmares for the next few nights. And later I would learn that it is getting a spinoff. The Warrens have garnered some respect for their work but also have to face more skeptics. Lorraine also has to deal with premonitions of her husband's death and haunting from the Nun who even comes to their house through a painting that Ed makes of it.

James Wan does a terrific job with the camera work showing just enough to have viewers squirming in their seats before the boom and jump scares. He ratchets up the tension and tells a story that does justice to the original and true story this event was based on. The dark hallways and the flooded basement are a perfect setting for the hauntings. I hope that Wan returns to the horror genre after Aquaman because he has the formula down and has developed a great talent for this type of filmmaking. Madison Wolfe is the breakout performance of the film as the young girl Janet Hodgson who is the focus of the old man that stays around in the house after his death. Her fear translates well on screen and she carries many of the scariest scenes in the movie. Frances O'Connor is great as Peggy, the troubled mother who doesn't know whether to believe her daughter at first and then is distraught as her life falls apart. 

The news media picks up the story and garners attention for the haunting. Maurice Grosse (Simon McBurney) is a paranormal investigator who believes the stories of Janet and attests to the happenings. Anita Gregory (Franka Potente) is skeptical claiming the children are pranksters with wild imaginations. The news media does get footage of Janet speaking with a creepy voice. 

For fans of horror, The Conjuring 2 is a real treat, scary and entertaining, and a whole lot of fun. For the faint of heart, I would caution against going into this film without preparing yourself to be cowering in your seat. The Conjuring 2 may just be one of my favorite films of the year and possibly one of my favorite horror films ever. 

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