June 30, 2019

ANNABELLE COMES HOME (AND WHY!)

After a hectic week, our correspondents decide to blow off some steam by watching Annabelle Comes Home, which kinda turned out to be a shocker. Spoilers ahead!!

Words: Yvonne Jacob and Shourya Jain
Images Courtesy: www.imdb.com

As if one visit wasn’t enough, our favourite doll of death comes home again and she sure makes the visit very memorable. Annabelle Comes Home is the third Annabelle movie and the seventh film from The Conjuring horror franchise. Written and directed by Gary Dauberman in his directorial debut, from a story co-written with James Wan also produced with Peter Safran, the movie is a sequel to 2014’s Annabelle and 2017’s Annabelle: Creation.

(1971) The movie starts with demonologists Ed (Patrick Wilson) and Lorraine Warren (Vera Farmiga) talking to two nurses, Debbie and Camilla (who were introduced to the audience in the first installment and then again in the second) are seen making claims that the doll often performed violent activities. Ed and Lorraine take her away for good riddance (is it really though?) and lock her up in a sacred glass case in their artifacts room after it is blessed by Father Gordon to ensure that the evil is contained.

A year later, in 1972, the Warrens welcome Mary Ellen (Madison Iseman) who is in charge of babysitting their daughter, Judy (Mckenna Grace), overnight while the couple goes to investigate another case. After shopping at the supermarket and talking to her crush Bob Palmeri (Michael Cimino), Mary Ellen starts to bake a cake for Judy’s birthday for which her friend Daniela Rios (Katie Sarfie) arrives uninvited (no prizes for guessing who else shows up uninvited) and gifts Judy a pair of roller skates that she owned as a child. Curious to know more about the dead after her father’s passing away, she snoops around the house to find the artifacts room while Mary Ellen and Judy play outside, only to find that the room was securely locked.

Daniela finds the key to the room (conveniently) placed behind a picture of Jesus and of course, ventures into the room and touches all of the haunted artifacts. She tries to contact her late father by wearing the Mourner’s Bracelet and calls out to any spirit present in the room, and the spirits gladly respond to her call after she accidentally leaves Annabelle’s glass case unlocked and the doll falls out, or more like escapes to freedom which obviously meant that the birthday party was going to be a big bummer.

Here on, Annabelle Comes Home introduces a fleet of new characters for potential spin-offs in the franchise’s future. After seven movies from the production house you might think the movies might start getting repetitive- we suggest you to think again. You cannot miss the (ominous) bride’s elegant dress even when she seems to be coming at you through the screen-attention to detail. The distant wailings of (maybe) an unfortunate love story of the cursed samurai armour leaves you hanging and longing for an off-beat sequel. It’s interesting how the plot was simple yet has many distinct elements spread out to your gauge attention. What’s even more interesting is that the main characters, Ed and Lorraine have no part to play in the movie and the hero turns out to be their brave little ten year old, Judy. This is also the first time you’ll get to spend a lot of time in Ed and Lorraine’s room of cursed artifacts. Annabelle herself doesn’t get a lot of screen time in this part but her sheer presence and googly mad eyes are horrific enough.

Packed with a lot of jumpscares, Annabelle Comes Home will surely make you feel like you’re in a horror house where various elements keep coming at you one after the other giving you no time to recover from the breathlessness. Unlike The Nun which sends you in a depression filled slumber even after you’ve left the theatre, Annabelle Comes Home is more action filled and keeps you on the edge of your seat. You can’t decide if you should mock Daniela for her attempt to contact her dead father or applaud Judy for being quick on toes and getting everyone out of the “situation”. The movie is well paced and does not feel dragged at any point. The only out of the place element is the Hellhound because at the end of the day he’s just a doggo and how can a dog be scary? But on a more serious note the Hellhound does feel like a hat on a hat. On the other hand we would love to know more about the in-depth story of the Ferryman and his coins.

Annabelle Comes Home may seem like you regular Conjuring franchise product but has so much more to offer from a horror movie lovers’ perspective. We give it a 3.5/5 star rating.

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