The Movie: 7.5/10
The Conjuring did the trick. These veins were craving a creepy ghost story and that’s what it dosed up directly to my Halloween mood. I might not believe in anything those who inspired this fictional version of a “true” story do, but that doesn’t matter. They believe there are spirits, good, evil, swirling around and we have to battle them in this life. I believe in movies that conjure up tales and characters and events that entertain my brain or make me think, or both. (see what I did there, conjuring, The Conjuring)
The mystical fairy tales of ghosts and evils spirits are firmly established in this 70’s story of a haunted family from the very beginning. We meet our ghost hunters in their museum of haunted and possessed objects. Mr. and Mrs. Warren lecture about possessions and exorcisms, and have performed a few of them through their careers of paranormal investigations. Our leading couple, the parents of 5 who is experiencing strange occurrences in their newly established home in a remote farm-house (remote farm-house!!), finds the Warrens and asked that they come help them. The shit then hits the fan.
With a series of terrible things having happened on the property of the remote farm-house, we learn about a witch, murders, infanticide, insanity, and other creepfest goodies. The young daughters of the tormented by on actually very horrible things, noises, entities, it’s enough to make me recoil from time to time. We need a cleansing, an exorcism…yes, exorcism. I do think the first 2/3 of the movie got me more entangled in the actual scare factor of what was going on, after that it became, well, and exorcism. Don’t get me wrong, there were scares that made me semi-gasp from start to finish, just some near the end were more standard and not as interesting.
If anyone can get the horrific spirits and very terrible activities around this house to stop it’s the Warrens, but they are, of course, troubled somewhat themselves. We get hints of issues but no real solid explanation which is interesting in itself. The haunted items include a very unsettling doll that makes me look around me right now to make sure it’s not behind, even in the bright light of this fine Autumn day. Other devices in the movie are things like clapping when you know no one is there, or is there? That scared the shit out of me, I am not afraid to admit it. The match in the dark is a good one too, you just don’t know what’s beyond the light of that little flame. The noises and inhuman taunting, it all comes together to make The Conjuring a worth candidate to add to the Halloween season.
The quality of the performances is really good. The sound effects are amazing. The thumps and apparitions are spooky and made me really like this movie.Overall this is one of those flicks I might revisit during another October in future years. It’s worth cracking through your hard shell of “I’m not gonna get scared at any movie!!” and let it just give you the creeps.
- The Conjuring: Face To Face With Terror – An all too short 7 minute featurette that tells the real life story of the Farmhouse incident If you believe in this type of thing you might not sleep for weeks after watching this.
- A Life In Demonology – A 16 minute look at the people involved in the real life story the movie is based on. Lorraine Warren is interviewed along with voice snippets from her late husband. You even get to see the real life version of the museum featured in The Conjuring.
- Scaring The @#$%$ Out Of You – An EPK style featurette which goes over the making of the movie. I was surprised to see they actually built the whole house from scratch on a set. It’s so good you would never question it in the movie.
- DVD & UV Digital Copy
Cover Art and Menus: 8/10
The menu is what it is, navigation. The cover is fine with me. It’s inviting in that “What the hell is going on?” kind of way. Any cover that gets me to ask that question and then want to follow up with watching the movie inside, helps me undo the memories of so many other covers that are not this good. I would have this as a poster in my house…..hint hint
Audio & Video: 8/10
If you are a fan of 1970’s cinema Director James Wan pulls off that vibe perfectly here. Browns and yellows are the order of the day and a subdued color pallet that adds to the horror of the film. Warner’s 1080P/AVC encode really takes the theatrical presentation and runs with it, a lot of the film takes place in the dark but due to the great shadow levels nothing gets lost and detail is always evident. No issues were evident during our screening on a 100 inch screen if your a fan of the film you will not be disappointed.
The DTS-HD Master Audio track delivers everything a horror fan could wish for. The whole movie works because of the superb sound design that will literally make you jump out of your seat several times during the film. The rear speakers provide some fantastic ambiance, listen carefully during the exorcism scene and you might even hear a little clip from the original Exorcist in the background.
For a good’n’creepy couple of hours you will get the rental fee’s worth from The Conjuring. I don’t need it on my shelf so I will happily put down a couple bucks, enjoy the movie, enjoy the pretty darn good extras, and move on to spend a couple more of those bucks on some classics to make it a night.
Overall Score 7.5/10