Good day to you! I am Simon Rother, temporary writer for horror-movies.ca, just as I did last summer. I am writing to you concerning countless movies coming to us from Montreal’s 17th edition of the Fantasia International Film Festival, “the most important and prestigious genre film festival on this continent,” according to Quentin Tarantino.
That’s saying something.
First movie to report is the now theatrically released, “The Conjuring”. “Conjuring” is based on the true story (Joey King, actress in the movie who played one of the 5 daughters, was in attendance for the showing of the movie at Fantasia. Before the movie, she spoke to the crowd, saying, among other things, that she got to meet the 5 real-life daughters, as well as Ed and Lorraine Warren and that she confirms that all 7 individuals have told her the exact same story) of Ed and Lorraine Warren, paranormal investigators. One of their investigations had been too terrifying to reveal… until now. A farmhouse family, far from any neighbours, has been tormented by a demonic spirit and it is getting more dangerous by the night. Up until now, pretty basic ghost story.
Director James Wan (SAW movies and “Insidious”) sure knows how to spook people, though. It might not have been a hit with everybody, but “Insidious” sure creeped me out, and “Conjuring” does the same. Classic jumps are perfectly placed and we don’t wait too long before scares begin to happen. Once they do, they relentlessly come at you without pity. There is a lull in the middle of the movie, but the lack of scares is replaced by the explanation of a solid storyline.
I really like Patrick Wilson (“Insidious”, “Hard Candy”, “Lakeview Terrace”). I find he’s looked credible in all of his roles, even when we’re not sure if he’s a pedophile or not (“Hard Candy”). He does not disappoint in “Conjuring” either as the husband of psychic Lorraine Warren (the always beautiful Vera Farmiga; “Orphan”, “The Departed”).
Poltergeists, an EXTREMELY creep spirit (a zooming close-up of her face haunted me for half of the movie) and even an exorcism are well-placed in this movie, sure to scare you a couple of times.
Is the news that there will be “The Conjuring 2” good news? We don’t know right now, until we actually see that flick. What I do know, is that “The Conjuring”, in my opinion, is worth a solid 4.5 stars out of 5. Definitely a scary movie to go out and see in theatres.