Monday, September 2, 2013

The Conjuring

The Perron family move into their lovely new home, unaware of the malevolent entity waiting to pounce on them. The house has had a long history of being haunted by various spirits from different times in the past, although the soul of one woman dating back to the Salem witch trials proves to be the most vengeful. The haunting starts mildly, ranging from childish laughter to playful clapping which cause some harmless disorientation. It does not take long for it, however, to escalate and take a turn for the worse as the children start experiencing physical attacks taking a toll on their sanity. Carolyn (Lili Taylor) decides to enlist the help of Ed (Patrick Wilson) and Lorraine Warren (Vera Farmiga), two of America’s most renowned paranormal investigators, to help her exorcise the house.

This movie works because it uses traditional scare tactics that have proven to be very effective in typical horror movies. Hollywood has witnessed a shift in styles recently as far as horror movies are concerned. While most of these new innovations, such as the first person POV used in films like Paranormal Activity, add more to an already tired genre, sometimes it takes just one good old school film which pays good tribute to its predecessors to bring back the faith of the moviegoers. As such, the director has decided to bank on sound effects, as well as fast and abrupt camera motions to deliver the brand of horror that we all have experienced enjoying as a child, deeming heavy CGI unnecessary.

Although the movie features the pair of Wilson and director James Wan, who also both figure in the Insidious franchise, there simply is no worry that the movie would lose its identity whatsoever. Both films could be said to be tackling the same theme and relying on the same filmmaking techniques for effective scares, but The Conjuring manages to set itself apart by virtue of its true-to-life approach thanks to the real life existence of the Warren couple. Even so, it should be noted that this film is mainly fiction, and the aspects based on reality have obviously given way to artistic license to make the movie appear fare more sinister than it should be.

This could be a good family movie in that it focuses more on the dynamics among the large Perron family, as well as the effects of the supernatural occurrences in their house to the family as a whole. As such, there is that illusion in which the moviegoers could envision their families experiencing the same scenario, further feeding the paranoia which is already there.

The cast must be getting some well-deserved kudos for a job well done in the acting department. With every scream and every shout, the audience just empathizes with the pressing dilemma of the Perron family, as if they were next door neighbors extending much needed moral support. For a movie to draw you in like that while triggering your wildest fears at the same time, it must be that well-crafted.

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