Annabelle Comes Home is the third Annabelle installment in The Conjuring Cinematic Universe. How wild is it that a shared horror cinematic universe even exists!
It’s a bit like a successful version of what Universal was trying way too hard to do with it’s Dark Universe with Dracula Untold and The Mummy. Probably a good thing it didn’t take off based on those movies.
So let’s look at how Annabelle Comes Home rates against the others in the series.
Mckenna Grace ( The Haunting of Hill House) as Judy Warren the daughter of the husband and wife exorcist team. Mckenna does a pretty solid job of portraying the “spooky” kid at school that has been isolated from others because of what her parents do.
Patrick Wilson (Watchmen) as Ed Warren, Paranormal Investigator who has tackled several supernatural cases prior and tries to contain the evil he finds.
Vera Farmiga (Godzilla: King of the monsters) as Lorraine Warren a psychic who can see the dead and like her husband, is an investigator and exorcist.
Madison Iseman ( Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle) as Mary Ellen, the Warren’s babysitter for Judy. Madison gives an ok performance but I couldn’t really tell you anything about her character other than “caring and has asthma”.
Katie Sarife (Youth & Consequences) as Daniela Rios, Mary Ellens’s rebellious friend who is battling some demons of her own. Katie was actually a bit of a stand out in Annabelle Comes Home, I think she’s going to go on to some bigger things from here.
Michael Cimino as Bob Palmeri, you have to have balls to hit a werewolf in the face with a guitar. Bob’s got balls.
The Warren’s put a stop to Annabelle’s demonic fun by locking her away in their vault of cursed objects in their home.
Their daughter Judy is also feeling the effects of such concentrated evil but also the social fallout of having parents known for dealing with creepy stuff.
Mary Ellen is babysitting Judy for the Warrens and is a surrogate friend for Judy, Her friend Daniela is a mischievous influence but has her reasons why too.
Daniela goes snooping in the Warren’s room of cursed artifacts and unleashes Annabelle.
The Warrens are only in it very peripherally, again maybe this was my expectation it was going to be everything in their room of evil going nuts and escaping but the stakes felt lower than the other Conjuring movies.
Also if you hate jump scares this movie is no different and plays the audience like a fiddle. You know it’s going to happen and it still gets you with the same tired “everything goes quiet and then BOOM right in your face!”
Something that summed up the fatigue, while an onscreen character primed for a jump scare it went dead quiet and an audience member got a round of laughs with a resigned “Oh fuck off…”
The Good Stuff
Annabelle Comes Home does score a lot of points on it’s restraint for the first 45 minutes or so holding back and allowing the tension to build before ratcheting up the jump scares.
It also builds out some further lore in the Conjurverse with several new spooks, The Black Shuck, The Ferryman and The Bride.
The late 70’s setting also works for Annabelle, upping the feeling of isolation when you don’t have a lifeline to all knowledge right in your pocket.
Apart from the jump scares (which are always cheap) it did have good moments of impending dread fueled by some great use of sub-sonics and subtle visual effects.
Annabelle Comes home does give you the horror fix you are after once it picks up steam.
I get the feeling that Annabelle Comes Home is an Ant-Man to The Conjuring’s The Avengers. It was fine but not the movie you are really wanting to see.
I was expecting more from Annabelle Comes Home than it delivered it makes a big deal in the trailers of all the evil that was going to go wild in this movie but it held back a lot.
It’s better than The Nun’s goofyness and The Weeping Woman’s predictable story and scares but it never reaches the overall artistry The Conjuring movies achieved.
You’ll like it if you enjoy:
All of the Conjurverse movies.
Don’t care how you get scared as long as it happens.
Supernatural horror movies.
Skip it if you:
Think jump scares are the lowest form of wit.
Don’t want to add dolls to the same list you have clowns on.
Expect it to be the same experience as the main Conjuring films.
In cinemas June 27