Director: James Wan
Starring: Patrick Wilson, Vera Farmiga, Ron Livingston, Lili Taylor
Release Date: August 2nd 2013
Without a Paranormal Activity movie coming out this year, to door was open for another horror film to be the big one this year, sadly Mama was a massive let down and Insidious 2 is good, but not really scary, it fell to The Conjuring to be the big horror release of 2013, luckily for horror fans like myself, it didn’t disappoint.
The Conjuring was receiving a lot of buzz even before it has released, loosely based on the real-life story of paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren efforts to help the Perron family rid their home of vindictive supernatural entities, directed by the hit horror maker James Wan, who seems to be able to do no wrong when it comes to scary films, with both Saw and Insidious under his belt.
The Conjuring feels more like a classic horror, with plenty of character development, which is aided by a slow build-up and great acting by the main cast, especially Vera Farmiga and Patrick Wilson who had the rather hard task of playing the self-proclaimed “demonologists” Ed & Lorraine Warren, but they manage it well, adding an extra to what would otherwise be a pretty straightforward supernatural horror.
Character development aside, the film has its scary moments (probably the most important thing in a horror movie), with the scares helping you forgive some films clichés, including showing the clearly CGI spirit and a clear wink to a sequel, though if it is as well crafted as the first, I’ll have no problem with that.
The contrast between the two families in this movie is one of the driving forces in the film, with both mothers attempting to figure out the best way to protect their families from unseen forces, this adds some heart to a genre that can sometimes come off as heartless, with the build-up of emotion paying off with you feeling more drawn to the characters, this is especially evident in Lorraine, with her dream of going back to investigating the supernatural, after particularly bad encounter almost costing her, her own sanity, though her motherly instinct overrides this and propels her to help the clearly terrified Carolyn (Lili Taylor).
That’s what makes The Conjuring the best horror of the year, it adds layers to a genre that usually doesn’t bother, giving the supporting cast more of a back story than other films wood, something which in the end undoubtedly pays off in the end, plus it will scare you better than 99% of the horror films that have been released this year.