You don’t know the real story.
Director: David F. Sandberg
Starring: Anthony LaPaglia, Samara Lee, Maria Otto, Stephanie Sigman
Release Date: August 2017
Plot: Twelve years after the tragic death of their little girl, a doll-maker and his wife welcome a nun and several girls from a shuttered orphanage into their home, where they become the target of the dollmaker’s possessed creation, Annabelle.
Strangely when it comes to The Conjuring horror franchise, the quality of the films neither goes up nor goes down, staying firmly average in every department, with the prequel to 2014’s Annabelle being and the fourth film in the series being exactly the same, neither awful nor amazing.
Telling the origin story of the possessed doll Annabelle and providing more backstory to the demon you experience in The Nun, Annabelle: Creation welcomed back James Wan as a producer rather than the director and proved to be another hit at the Box Office, though this might down to the state of horror cinema at the moment rather than the quality of the movie, that being said this movie did better with critics than the original Annabelle movie and I found to be a more entertaining film too.
!2 years after they lose their daughter Annabelle (Lee) in a car accident, doll maker, Samuel Mullins (LaPaglia), and his wife Esther (Otto), welcome Sister Charlotte (Sigman) and several girls from a closed orphanage to stay at their rural farmhouse, warning the girls to not disturb the sick Esther or go into Annabelle’s old room, but girls being girls they do and in the process release the evil Annabelle doll.
I enjoyed The Conjuring, and to a lesser degree, its sequels, even the first Annabelle film was good enough to pass the time though I don’t think it was as good as the film it span off from, the prequel on the other hand I feel is getting back to the quality we expect from a film with Wan’s involvement, it’s well made, technically effective at making you jump, yes there’re loads of jump scares, but as you can see from audience reactions to Ari Aster‘s films such as Midsommar, some people prefer a jump scared filled horror film over one where the scares are more down to endless building tension.
One thing that should be commended is the acting, with almost the entire cast being female, something of a rarity in genre films, with the young actresses Lee and Lulu Wilson and Talitha Bateman doing an amazing job given the material they are provided with.
Annabelle: Creation is also a good-looking film, with a wonderfully American Gothic atmosphere in places and as you would expect from a Wan production, the supernatural effects are effective, while the creature design is imaginative.
At the end of the day, Annabelle: Creation builds on what fans liked in the first Annabelle film, expanding the lore behind the creature and mostly is entertaining and providing scares. Sure the characters may not be the best developed but unlike in Annabelle, the characters do nothing stupid such as not caring that the doll has reappeared after throwing it away.
Clearly, the makers learnt their lessons when making Annabelle Comes Home.