Demonic Doll Haunts Yet Another House in Prequel to “The Conjuring” Franchise

 

Annabelle: Creation

Film Review by Kam Williams

Demonic Doll Haunts Yet Another House in Prequel to “The Conjuring” Franchise

Annabelle: Creation is the fourth film in a horror franchise that previously featured The Conjuring 1 and 2 as well as Annabelle. Because this prequel is set in 1952, well before the events which transpired in the others, one need not be familiar with those pictures to thoroughly enjoy this one, provided you like having the bejesus scared out of you.

The stand-alone screamfest trades in all the staples of your generic  haunted house adventure, ranging from a spooky disembodied voice singing a cappella, to involuntary levitation, to a victim leaving nail marks in the floor as she’s dragged down a darkened hall by a mysterious force. The movie was directed by David F. Sandberg, the Swedish wunderkind who made an impressive debut just last year with the low-budget thriller Lights Out.

As the film unfolds, we find dollmaker Samuel Mullins (Anthony LaPaglia) and his reclusive, bed-ridden wife, Esther (Miranda Otto), passing their days in a ramshackle, Victorian mansion sitting on a mountaintop in the middle of nowhere. They’re ostensibly still shaken by the loss of their daughter Bee (Samara Lee) who was hit by a car over a decade ago.

Annabelle: Creation,  Film Review,  David F. Sandberg, Anthony LaPaglia, Miranda Otto, Samara Lee, spine-tingling

That might explain why the inconsolable couple has decided to share their humble abode with a half-dozen orphans. The homeless girls are being chaperoned by Sister Charlotte  (Stephanie Sigman), a God-fearing guardian grateful to get a roof over their heads.

  The waifs are pretty much given free rein of the place, except for a direct order from Mr. Mullins to steer clear of Bee’s bedroom. But that injunction proves too tempting for Janice (Talitha Bateman), a curious kid suffering from polio.

Of course, she ventures inside and unwittingly unleashes a host of demonic forces doing the bidding of Annabelle, a doll Samuel had originally made for his dearly-departed daughter. It isn’t long thereafter that all hell begins to breaks loose.

Annabelle: Creation,  Film Review,  David F. Sandberg, Anthony LaPaglia, Miranda Otto, Samara Lee, spine-tingling

Director Sandberg proves particularly adept at ratcheting up the tension. In fact, the spine-tingling flick delivers innumerable heart-stopping moments along the way, though they come more from jolting sounds and abrupt edits than from investment in the simplistically-drawn characters.

Ask if they’ll sell you a ticket for half a seat, since you’ll never bother to sit back during this edge-of-your-seat thriller.”

Very Good (3 stars)

Rated R for horror violence and terror

Running time: 109 minutes

Production Company: New Line Cinema / Atomic Monster

Distributor: Warner Brothers Pictures

 

Source:  Baret News

 

 

For movies opening August 11, 2017

 

OPENING THIS WEEK

Kam’s Kapsules

Weekly Previews That Make Choosing a Film Fun

by Kam Williams

For movies opening August 11, 2017

Kam's Kapsules, Big Budget Films, Foreign & Independent Films, movies, weekly previews, Woody Harrelson, Anthony LaPaglia, Samara Lee

BIG BUDGET FILMS

Annabelle: Creation (R for horror violence) Tale of demonic possession about a dollmaker (Anthony LaPaglia) and his wife (Miranda Otto) who open their home to a nun (Stephanie Sigman) and several orphans only to have them terrorized by one of his creations (Samara Lee). With Talitha Bateman, Lulu Wilson and Kerry O’Malley.

The Glass Castle (PG-13 for profanity, smoking and mature themes) Brie Larson stars in this adaptation of Jeanette Walls’ best-selling memoir of the same name recounting being raised in a dysfunctional family by an artist (Naomi Watts) and an alcoholic (Woody Harrelson). Cast includes Sarah Snook, Josh Caras and Max Greenfield.

The Nut Job 3: Nutty by Nature (PG for action and rude humor) Animated sequel finds Surly the squirrel (Will Arnett) and his sidekick Buddy (Tom Kenny) joining forces with other animals in order to prevent their crooked mayor (Bobby Moynihan) from paving the park to put up an amusement park. Voice cast includes Maya Rudolph, Jackie Chan, Katherine Heigl and Jeff Dunham.

INDEPENDENT & FOREIGN FILMS

Good Time (R for violence, drug use, sexuality and pervasive profanity) NYC crime drama revolving around a mobster’s (Robert Parkinson) efforts to spring his brother (Ben Safdie) from jail after a botched bank robbery. With Buddy Duress, Barkhad (I’m the Captain, now!”) Abdi and Jennifer Jason Leigh.

In This Corner of the World (PG-13 for mature themes and images of war) Animated historical drama, set in Japan during World War II, revolving around the survivor’s guilt of an 18 year-old girl (Non) who married and moved away from Hiroshima before the atom bomb was dropped on her hometown. Voice cast includes Megumi Han, Natsuki Inaba and Nanase Iwai. (In Japanese with subtitles)

Ingrid Goes West (R for sexuality, disturbing behavior, drug use and pervasive behavior) Aubrey Plaza handles the title role in this character study of a stalker who relocates from Pennsylvania to L.A. after becoming obsessed with an Instagram celebrity (Elizabeth Olsen). Featuring O’Shea Jackson, Jr., Wyatt Russell and Billy Magnussen.

The Only Living Boy in New York (R for profanity and drug use) Dysfunctional family drama about the love triangle which develops after a recent college grad (Callum Turner) discovers that his father’s (Pierce Brosnan) cheating on his mother (Cynthia Nixon) with a younger woman (Kate Beckinsale). With Jeff Bridges, Kiersey Clemons and Wallace Shawn.

Planetarium (Unrated) Supernatural fantasy about a couple of psychic sisters (Natalie Portman and Lily-Rose Depp) who are hired by a film studio executive (Emmanuel Salinger) to star in a movie about spiritualism. Support cast includes Louis Garrel, Amira Casar and Pierre Salvadori. (In English and french with subtitles)

A Taxi Driver (Unrated) Fact-based drama, set in South Korea in 1980, recounting how a cabbie (Kang-ho Song) helped a German reporter (Thomas Kretschmann) covering an insurrection in the city of Gwangju. With Hae-jin Yoo, Jun-yeol Ryu and Daniel Joey Albright. (In Korean with subtitles)

The Trip to Spain (Unrated) Third installment in the culinary series finds comedians Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon cracking jokes while traveling around Spain and sampling the local cuisine over the course of five days.

Whose Streets? (R for pervasive profanity) Black Lives Matter documentary taking an unvarnished look at Ferguson, Missouri in the wake of the police shooting of 18 year-old Mike Brown. 

 

 Source:  Baret News