So I will start off by telling you I never saw the Conjuring. I wanted to, but I saw a kid in the trailer, and that scared me. So I refused to see it. Children terrify me, so I try not to see horror movies based around kids, because I’ll end up sleeping with every light in my house on with The Lion King or The Lego Movie on repeat on my TV. But, I decided to take a chance on this one, Annabelle. How did I do? Well Everything is Awesome is playing in the back ground as I write this…….
Annabelle the prequel to The Conjuring! The Conjuring was hailed as not only one of the best of 2013, but some call it the best horror film in the past decade. That said, Annabelle had a lot to live up to. The film sees a new director who does not have much of a background. John R. Leonetti, yes the director that brought us Mortal Kombat Annihilation. Don’t let that sway you though. The film has its issues, but for the most part, it is a very good horror film. The film stars relative unknowns in Annabelle Wallis and Ward Horton, as well as Tony Amendola and Alfrie Woodard.
Annabelle tells the story of a young family (Wallis and Horton) who after a tragic turn of events involving their neighbors cult following child, begin to be haunted by a possessed Doll. As they attempt to explain the events that are playing out in their lives, it becomes increasingly evident that this Doll is more then it seems.
The film is full of easter eggs that lead into The Conjuring (so I am told from my buddy). As well as you cliché horror tricks. You have your jump scares, your shadows, your noises, as well as all the normal creepy people walking in the background in and out of the frame. You’ve seen this a hundred times. Some films you see these clichés and they just don’t work, then there’s the jewels like Annabelle that can do it and make you feel like it’s the first time you’ve seen these cheap tricks
Annabelle is definitely creepy. You should leave the theater afraid, but if you end up looking closer you will also find a few problems with the film. The two leads, relative unknowns, have decent enough chemistry together, but the dialog between them is just awful. Whoever wrote these words (Gary Daubermann) must not speak to other people on a regular basis. As well, the manifestation of the demon took me out of the film. As soon as I saw it my mind raced to the demon in This is the End.
All in all, Annabelle had me scared in the theater, afraid on the way home, and watching The Lego Movie with my lights on so I can sleep. I’m giving it a Jeebus score of 3.5, plus a .1 bonus for being the first horror movie since Paranormal Activity 3 that has me watching a kids cartoon with the lights on to sleep. That brings it to a 3.6, Check out the Matinee.