Here at Newcastle Live, we’re a little jealous. Mostly because our favourite movie reviewer is currently off seeing the sites of the world and we are here sitting behind a desk. But hey, you win some you lose some and of course we are very (very) happy for her. But, with that in mind the movies just don’t stop rolling in, and one movie in particular caught Laura’s eye and the editorial team decided to run with it. By that I mean Laura has a login to the website and Laura decided to run with it. So, for the horror to thriller fan/masochists this one’s for you.
Let me just start off by saying that I am one of those people that really really cares for horror movies. Anything that has been written with the intent to scare the living daylights out of me makes me so incredibly happy. Which is exactly why I decided to turn the tables and review one of the latest movies to hit the Box Office: Annabelle: Creation.
For those in the know, this is just the latest instalment from the Conjuring Universe. The Conjuring really changed the game in terms of the way filmmakers and also movie goers approach the horror genre, and James Wan is an absolute genius. He makes films that are so much more about the cheap jump scare. He makes you invest in the characters and therefore you start to care about the characters, and their eventual fate. Each and every one of his movies is highly emotive, and sadistic in a really beautiful way, and the way he executes his vision is incredible. Annabelle: Creation is, as the title suggests, the very beginning of said universe, taking the audience back to the moment where the horrors lurking within a seemingly innocent (albeit terrifying) doll take hold. Although James didn’t direct, or write this particular instalment, as Producer, he definitely left his mark on the movie, and this really dragged it over the line for me personally.
You might be thinking, just how scary can this doll actually be? You’re probably also thinking, “hey I saw Annabelle and wasn’t that impressed why oh why would I see this movie?” Yes this is true, the original Annabelle wasn’t all that scary and it was actually kind of a let down at the end of the day especially when it comes to the narrative and our ability to be attached to the characters in the film. The semantics of the doll itself in the original, also made her feel lifeless and stiff, as though she couldn’t actually pull of the nightmare those involved with that instalment were trying to portray. However, with Annabelle: Creation, the doll itself is really attached to a once living child, aptly named Annabelle. This tiny detail combined wth the life they inject into the doll itself, for once, makes her really really scary.
The plot revolves around yet another creepy house, grief stricken parents, and a school of wayward orphans or, as the evil spirit lurking in the house wants you to think, a house full of potential souls to possess. I’m not going to give away any major plot points here, but things go as they always tend to do, and the ‘evil’ lurking in the house attaches itself to both the doll and to one of the girls residing in the house. Talitha Bateman does an incredible and articulate job transitioning from innocent child to possessed maniac and she was truly and horrifyingly awesome. But, the other actors involved were kind a real let down, and some of the performances were woody, two dimensional and I just didn’t want to get attached to their characters.
Now here is both the climax of my review and the crux of my pet hate with each and every horror movie I’ve seen (except for the Babadook – that is a v good movie). You see the monster. You see the form that this demon thing takes and sure, it’s scary and terrifying or whatever, but it will never ever be as terrifying as anything that lurks in the depths of your imagination so it really ruined the movie for me. I don’t like it when that happens. It’s so anti-climatic and so disappointing. The makers of horror movies, please please sop doing this. Please.
Is Annabelle: Creation scary? yes, it is. I jumped a lot and my sister sat there cowering in terror after I bribed her to come with me. Ok, maybe I did too. Especially at some points. But it wasn’t as psychologically, or as long lastingly scary as the other movies in the franchise, but still a whole heap better than the original Annabelle. The ending however, was the redeeming feature, which leaves me saying yes I will absolutely see this movie again. So, if you’re after a cheap jump scare on that cliche first date, this movie is for you. If you’re a fan of the Conjuring Universe, this movie is also for you – especially the ending. Go and see this movie, and enjoy the pure and wonderful feeling of being frightened. It makes you feel alive no?
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