Writers of Screenplay: Carey Hayes, Chad Hayes, James Wan and David Leslie Johnson
Starring: Patrick Wilson, Vera Farmiga, Francis O’Connor, Madison Wolfe, Simon McBurney and Franka Potente.
Similar to the original (The Conjuring (2013)), Paranormal Investigators, Ed (Patrick Wilson) and Lorraine (Vera Farmiga) Warren reflect on a past case (those of you familiar with The Amityville Horror (2005) will understand the need to reflect) and worry about their future in a world that’s quite literally hell on earth.
With a call from the Catholic Church to investigate a haunting of the Hodgson Family in Enfield England, Lorrain’s premonition of Ed’s death could put her fear of the future firmly in the present reality.
Director James Wan (also director of the original ‘Conjuring’ and a favourite of mine, Insidious (2010)) uses a vision filled with archetypes to bring demons to life. Bringing old fears into a new world by combining a great narrative with a perfectly matched soundtrack (Joseph Bishara) to keep the audience on the edge of their seat; keeping the story and characters held in suspense and letting beings not of this world to enter.
There’s a flavour to the Wan films – a true talent who creates horror without gore.
The story taps into a deep-seated fear of archaic evil our grandparents were scarred of and their grandparents before them. This is biblical. To the extent that 20% of the audience left a quarter of the way through the movie because they were too scared (I’m not kidding!). So be warned, this is a pretty scary movie – but seriously people, if you’re scared you always have to watch to the end, otherwise you’re just left hanging… Anyway…
Joseph Bishara was also the composer of the film Insidious, the success of both The Conjuring 2 and Insidious lying largely with the suspense created by the creepy soundtrack.
Wan is genius in his use of not only the soundtrack, but also the trickery of shadows, slips in time, old toys; a focus on the eyes or a terrifying portrait brought to life. Seemingly simple devises, but used so well.
And the two characters that make the couple, The Warrens, are likeable. The audience is with them, all the way, all through the terrors.
There’s a journey here. An invitation to take hold of a hand – a, Gotcha, then I’ll let you go a bit… then, I gotcha again: This time, I gotcha good.
James Wan is creating his own brand of horror thriller, and I’m very much enjoying the show.
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