Sunday, October 13, 2013

Be afraid. Be *very* afraid.

"There's a lady in a dirty nightgown that I see in my dreams. She's standing in front of my mom's bed."

There are a few movies which are scary and at the same time touch you emotionally in a particular way. There is a fear of the devil and then an emotion of the fight against it to protect the loved ones. The Conjuring (2013) is a horror movie based on a true story of two American paranormal investigators, Lorraine (Vera Farmiga) and Ed Warren (Patrick Wilson) and their experience with the Perron family while dealing with a haunting.
"There is something horrible happening in my house."
Carolyn (Lili Taylor) and Roger (Ron Livingston), along with their daughters move to a farmhouse in Harrisville, Rhode Island in 1971. As obvious as it could get, they were mainly drawn to it because of the relatively low price. They seem to settle down peacefully on day one, however their dog Sadie refuses to enter the house, perhaps she had already sensed that there is something happening in there. Her sense was real but it came with a price as the family finds her dead the next morning. Unexplained things start to happen over the next few days until the family is convinced that there is something evil residing in their house which wants to harm them. The family is hurt mentally and physically and they approach the Warrens to seek help against the supernatural occurrences. 

"God brought us together for a reason."
This movie has a brilliant build-up as it effortlessly manages to create an eerie atmosphere, a considerable amount of credit must be given to excellent camera work. Director James Wan makes sure that the tension remains consistent as he keeps adding fear in regular doses to his recipe of horror. The fact that it has the 70's set up also contributes to the sinister ambiance. It is admirable that there is not much graphic when it comes to showing the face of evil as the biggest fear is that of the unknown. The Warrens conduct a study of the house and come to a conclusion that it needs exorcism for which they need permission from the church authorities at the Vatican. The evil activity gets so frequent that there is no time to wait and the family is forced to move out of the house. Once happy to find a new home with beautiful surroundings they become increasingly desperate to get rid of it but unfortunately it's too late as one of them gets trapped by the devil. This fight to save the possessed and its target, who is again a member of the family is a mix of horror and emotion as everyone involved struggles right till the end. It's the memory of loving and being loved which eventually conquers evil and that's where the emotionally touching part comes from. 

"The devil exists. God exists. And for us, as people, our very destiny hinges on which we decide to follow."
The Conjuring doesn't fail to scare, it's wonderfully directed to make sure that the viewer shivers. The characters are great and so is the direction. Although I was not that impressed by the ending which to some extent fails to match the magnificent build-up of fear throughout the movie. Besides that, this movie is one of the best horror ones till date.

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