Fans of movies that make you jump will love The Conjuring. The spooky thrillride is based on a real paranormal case from 1971 in which a family was haunted by more than their fair share of demons. The film adaptation may be predictable, but the special effects are enough to give you goosebumps.
Because The Conjuring is based on real events, the reasonings for the family being visited by evil spirits are much more complex than in the average horror film. That being said, the “horror” to the film is still easy to detect. Audience members who watch a lot of this genre will know when something is about to jump out at them.
Although these moments can be predicted, they still are terrifying thanks to the absolutely terrific special effects. They are what really make the movie something to fear long after the end credits roll. The makeup alone is something that could be praised for pages and pages. There are so many incredible makeup effects in the last 30 minutes of the film that really drive the movie. The exorcism scene shown in the trailer is something that is overdone in most of these kinds of stories, but the transition between human and demon across the actress’ face is absolutely amazing. Even when she is just the demon, the makeup looks so flawless that is hard to remember that it is just an effect at all. Of course, other effects besides the makeup are pretty phenomenal as well. There are a few Paranormal Activity-esque body pulls that will make your skin crawl, not to mention that scene from the trailer where a body shape appears when the wind blows the sheets on the laundry line.
In fact, besides predictability, The Conjuring is a pretty well-done film. The only downside is that some of the writing is not that strong. There are times that lines seem added for filler and they are noticably awkward. The forced romantic storyline between the two demonologists weakens your connection to them. After a while you want to say, “We get it. She won’t leave him” and be done with it. While the acting is pretty decent, the two female leads – Vera Farmiga and Lili Taylor, respectively — carry the cast. However, young up-and-coming actress Joey King also does her fair share of portraying realisitic terror.
The Conjuring is a solid horror film, and one of the best released in a long time. While you might be able to guess what will happen next, the graphics on the screen will still make you a little uneasy after you have left the theatre.