[Review] Annabelle Comes Home (2019)
Annabelle Comes Home – Determined to keep Annabelle from wreaking more havoc, paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren lock the possessed doll in the artifacts room in their house. But when the doll awakens the room’s evil spirits, it soon becomes an unholy night of terror for the couple’s 10-year-old daughter, her friends, and their young baby sitter. Annabelle Comes Home serves as a sequel to 2014’s Annabelle and 2017’s Annabelle: Creation. Annabelle Comes Home was theatrically released in the United States on June 26, 2019. It received mixed reviews from critics and has grossed $228.6 million worldwide.
“Annabelle Comes Home” is the third film in the Annabelle series and is the seventh film under the Conjuring universe of supernatural horror films. We learn from the opening scene of Annabelle Comes Home that it takes place in the same timeline as the original Conjuring movie. The film mainly revolves around Judy, Ed and Lorraine Warren’s only daughter, who lives in the house where all the bizarre artifacts are in a room and know it is important to never touch anything in there. The film is also co-written and directed by Gary Dauberman, who wrote the remake of It, Annabelle, Annabelle: Creation and The Nun. This is the first film he has directed and I think he did a great job with it understands what makes these types of films fun and appealing.
If you’ve seen the first Conjuring movie, you know that the Warrens came into possession of the Annabelle doll, but in this third installment in the series, we actually get to see that part happening. In 1971, demonologists and paranormal researchers Ed (Patrick Wilson) and Lorraine Warren (Vera Farmiga) are shown bringing the possessed Annabelle back to their home, pointing out that the doll facilitates evil spirits to possess others. Returning home their car breaks down. As Ed exits the car to see what’s wrong, Annabelle begins to attract angry ghosts all around them who attempt to kill them.
Surviving the attack and back at the house, the Warrens meet Father Gordon, a priest who blesses the doll after it is taken inside the creepy artifact room and placed in a cabinet made from glass that was removed from a burnt down church. Although the Warrens are only shown for a little while it’s clear to see that once again their shared chemistry remains one of the strongest elements of the entire franchise.
After Father Gordon blesses the cabinet containing the evil doll, the film fast-forwards a year to the Warrens welcoming to their home Mary Elen (Madison Iseman) to babysit their young daughter Judy (McKenna Grace) for the night. It is disclosed later in the film that Judy is able to see ghosts and spirits, just like her mother. After the Warren’s leave, Mary Ellen’s friend Daniela (Katie Sarife), decides to visit the Warren house. She reveals that she wants to speak to her dead father, who recently died after a car crash.
Supposedly, she was the driver and blames herself, which brings her into the Warrens’ hidden room which holds the most sinister of demonic occult objects that can no longer harm the world. Daniela ends up touching every cursed item in the room and even accidentally unlocks Annabelle’s container, leaving it slightly opened. She ends up using one of the artifacts called the Mourner’s Bracelet, which is said to allow a beloved spirt to return so that you can talk to them.
Let me make note that the artifact room itself is an extremely fascinating addition to this film because in previous Conjuring movies we barely get a glimpse inside of it. Most of this movie is based inside the room which is so much fun! Ever since the Warrens’ collection of possessed and cursed objects was introduced, I’m positive that everyone has been dying for them to explore the items more, so here, you definitely get your payoff.
There are some very creepy objects in there, and even some that you will be familiar with. The creepy samurai armor from the earlier films is still in the collection, but it also introduces you to the franchises new and horrifying demons. They were all suspenseful, eerie, dark, and diabolical; such as The Ferryman, a Werewolf, a television set that shows the immediate future and The Bride, who I think was the most bizarre and would love for them to explore her story more. Anyway, they all had me on the edge of my seat.
The movie has some incredibly tense moments leading up to jumps, and it plays these very well, and I liked that they relied less on jump scares than some of the other films, it just serves to make the jumps that it did have even more effective. I always wondered how little Judy coped with her parent’s work and believe it or not, this segment dived deep to answer that question for me.
It also planted seeds to grow the Conjuring Universe in some new directions, not only with the growth of Judy but all the new demons that were introduced this time. The story itself and the acting were great, all of the actors did great in the role of their character with each having enough backstory to flesh them out and give them more depth, making the end result that in which you ended up caring about them.
The plot did take a little bit of time to develop, but once things start going, it does get very fast-paced and thoroughly foreboding at times all while staying grounded with the overall plot. Sadly, I had absolutely no idea that the real Lorraine Warren died just a few months before this film was released. She passed away on April 18, 2019, at the age of 92. This film was definitely a very nice tribute to her. RIP, Lorraine.
Title: Annabelle Comes Home
Release Date: June 26, 2019
Runtime: 1 hour, 46 minutes
Genre: Horror, Thriller, Suspense
Studio: Warner Bros. Pictures
Starring: Vera Farmiga, Patrick Wilson, Mckenna Grace
MPAA Rated: R
Director(s): Gary Dauberman
Reviewed by: Grim Magazine
Our Rating: 3.4 /5
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