Film Review: The Conjuring 2

Yesterday I finally went to the cinema after about seven months of not going! I’ve been so busy with my final year studies and, of course, I am constantly on a student budget. But, my friends were keen to see The Conjuring 2 because we all love a good horror film, so I was so excited to go and see it. I couldn’t remember too much detail from the first film, but I knew it was good and I didn’t suppose it would matter too much if I didn’t remember everything.

So, I wanted to do a post about my thoughts on the film to kick start a new category of posts on my blog. I used to know everything about all the films that were coming out, months in advance. I would talk about films that were in their earliest stages and I got excited for films over a year before seeing them. But, since coming to university I haven’t really had the time or the money to keep up with cinema. This is something that I would really like to get back into now that I’ve finished my degree.

Title: The Conjuring 2

Director: James Wan

Series: The Conjuring #2

Release Date: 10/06/2016

Genre: Horror

*There will be spoilers in this review!!!*

The Conjuring 2 is based on the Enfield Poltergeist haunting that took place in England in the 1970s. In the film, a family is haunted by the ghost of an old man named Bill Wilkins (Bob Adrian). The youngest daughter, Janet (Madison Wolfe), is frequently possessed by this spirit, speaking in his voice and seeing terrifying happenings around the house.

I really enjoyed the characters in the film. The family dynamics were interesting; a single mum looking after four children in 70s Britain after being cheated on by her husband. I also didn’t find any of the children to be annoying. Their acting was great and I really wanted them to survive and get a happy ending. For me, an emotional response to the characters is vital for any fictional narrative to be successful. I really liked the Hodgson family and their roles within the film. The devoted and helpless mother, the adorable youngest son who just wanted to eat his biscuits, the courageous young daughter, and her protective & caring older sister. The older son didn’t really come into the story much, but I’m assuming the real family had four children.

The spooky elements of the film were all profoundly disturbing. I particularly found the demonic voice of Bill Wilkins to be very chilling, especially the first time he speaks in the room of the two young girls to tell them “this is my house.” The haunting of Bill Wilkins, which generally targeted the youngest girl, Janet, was terrifying. I loved the scene with the remote control when it kept moving to the brown armchair where he passed away. I also liked the use of the children’s toys in the film during scary moments, such as the fire truck coming back out of the tent and the ever so chilling Crooked Man song.

Of course, there was another side to the story. Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga were back to play the same two characters that they play in the first film, renowned paranormal investigators, Ed and Lorraine Warren. We gain a deeper insight into their marriage in this film, about how they found someone who could understand their paranormal gift, and we route for them to survive just as much as the family.

They become more closely entangled in the mystery than just helping the Hodgsons. Lorraine sees a vision of a terrifying demon and a premonition of Ed’s death. I really enjoyed the cross-over between the two storylines and how they came together at the end. I also liked the doubt that Lorraine felt when she couldn’t sense any supernatural presence in the house. I thought the video of Janet destroying the kitchen was so intriguing and it was explained in an effective way.

The storyline worked really well and I enjoyed the acting, the characters, and the scary moments. If you’ve seen The Conjuring 2, let me know what you thought in the comments below.

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