Oct 31, 2013

Day 31: The Conjuring (2013)

Can a once-prolific blogger who hasn't written 31 posts all year find it in his soul to review 31 previously unseen horror films in 31 days of October? Let's find out...

Edit: This review is going to be old by then, but it's a part of Stacie Ponder's Final Girl Film Club. So...yay!?! Deal with it, kids. 


I DID IT! I DID IT! I DID IT! And I'm not talking about making a poopie. I watched and reviewed 31 new (to me) horror flicks in 31 days. Actually, I started watching and reviewing them in the last week of September to give myself a head-start. Needed it too. Phew!

I saved the biggest horror flick of the year for last. James Wan's The Conjuring, rented on Amazon Instant in HD.  Based on the occult investigations of Ed and Lorraine Warren into the haunting of the Perron family by a witch in the early 1970's.

Guys, I just love the 1970's. Everything about the decade. The clothes, the cars, the music (well, Death Before Disco), the sideburns and, of course, all the kooky satanic stuff. Have you noticed that the 1970's had more "based on a true story" demonic possession crap going on than any decade since? Even this film, which was released just this year, takes place in the funky demonic 1970's. One of the biggest reasons why the 1970's rocks my glitter socks off.

Truck-driving man Ron Livingstone (huh?) moves his wife (Lili Taylor) and their five daughters to a run-down old farmhouse in New England. Five fucking daughters!!! Jesus Christ, man! That's a whole lotta estrogen going on right there. Maybe a demonic possession wouldn't be such a bad thing, if you think about it. And wouldn't you know it...that's one of the added perks to this joint that they just got at auction. Ghosts, demons, witches, hidden rooms. Better than a two-car garage or a third bathroom, if you ask me. 

Back In 1976, my family packed up and moved to an old scary house in a new scary town. Seriously, it looked like the Marsten House from 'Salem's Lot. That big old thing had a hidden bookcase passageway, a tower (a fucking tower!) and the scariest cellar ever seen by mankind. You couldn't pay me to go down into that cellar. We were only there for about a year and a half, and I think I went down in that cellar once. Just once. The general upkeep and taxes on the house were enormous and my folks just couldn't afford it. But man, oh man...it was like living in the creepiest haunted house ever right during my formative years. Except that we didn't have one rotten incident of paranormal spookiness. Not a peep or poop. Which is a good thing, I guess.

Because if I had to have dealt with even a fraction of what the family in this film went through in their first two days in their home...well, I'd probably be dead right now. Holy fuck! This is one scary flick, kids. I'm going to leave my review vague on purpose. This is one of those films that you're better off knowing as little as possible going in. But I can say that it brought the horror. Well done all around.

The only thing that is keeping me from giving The Conjuring 5 full pumpkins was the ending. Don't get me wrong, it was fine. But everything that led up to the ending was balls to the wall. Whereas the ending was merely balls to about three feet from the wall. Just didn't seem thorough or final enough. And in the day and age when popular horror flicks get sequels approved before the opening weekend is even over...well, I guess I'm not surprised. But when compared to some classic films like The Exorcist, the climax just left me wanting more. Which we'll get in The Conjuring 2: Annabella Boogaloo*. I'm just spit-balling at a title here.

*Although I would enjoy a full movie on the Annabella doll. Fucking creepy dolls...

Verdant Dude rating: 4 out of 5 pumpkins

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