This is the film everyone is talking about and I have to say this film scared the hell out of me! It is the spin-off and prequel to The Conjuring where Annabelle first terrified everyone. Now I haven't seen The Conjuring yet (I'm still scarred by this film!) and my friends inform me that this is actually good because it'll make sense when I do see it.
Before we get into the review, let's have a bit of background. Directed by John R. Leonetti and produced by James Wan, Annabelle is actually based on a true story about a real haunted doll that is locked up in an occult museum in Connecticut only to be visited by a priest twice a month who blesses her. As aforementioned Annabelle is the prequel to The Conjuring and this film takes you all the way back to the start before the evil was unleashed. A man called John Form finds a special, vintage doll and gives it to his pregnant wife, Mia who seemingly collects rare dolls and is blown away by the beauty that is.. Annabelle. But her happiness doesn't last long after one horrific night, the couples' home is broken into by members of a satanic cult who attack Mia and John violently. Blood is spilled and one drop falls onto Annabelle's face, becoming the catalyst of the evil that haunts the family for the rest of the film.
Now can I just say before I even review the film that I am genuinely terrified of dolls. Even if it's not a horror film, if I see any kind of doll I will scream. And this film did not fail to deliver the hysterical screams that erupted out of me. Annabelle definitely earned it's prequel status and the film carries itself just fine regardless of The Conjuring's reputation. It wasn't at all over-the-top and the storyline was okay and easy enough to follow for 98 minutes. The camera work was stunning and moved effectively and caught just the right amount of tension in each scene.
I can't really criticise the film that much because it was scary and creepy enough to keep the jumpy parts coming over and over again whilst building up the story which would eventually lead to The Conjuring. The cast was pretty good although the acting was a bit stiff and wooden at times especially from Ward Horton who played the husband. Annabelle Wallis who played Mia (scarily named the same as the doll!) is very strong as the lead role. Alfre Woodard (Evelyn) was also great in her small role and made her short scenes memorable. But the doll, Annabelle, clearly outclassed all of her human co-stars and brought the eeriness and scares without resorting to cheap gimmicks.
It certainly made me lose sleep considering I have a porcelain doll somewhere in the house! Definitely a must watch especially with Halloween is coming up!
Here's the trailer:
Have you seen it already? What did you think?
Let me know in the comments below, please!
Thankyou for reading.