With everything being a part of a shared universe, looks like The Conjuring is leading horror fans to explore anything following the paranormal and scares. Though the first two Conjuring films are very entertaining, its first spinoff, 2014’s Annabelle, was an atrocity to the horror genre as well as being one of the worst horror movies I’ve seen in years. When they announced they are doing a prequel to the prequel, I’m was one of the few people who asked, “do we really want a crappy sequel to a bad movie?” With very low expectations for Annabelle: Creation, it managed to be a lot better than the first film.
The plot: Former toy maker Sam Mullins (Anthony LaPaglia) and his wife Esther (Miranda Otto) are happy to welcome a nun and six orphaned girls into their California farmhouse. Years earlier, the couple lost their 7-year-old daughter Annabelle in a tragic car accident. Terror soon strikes when one of the girls finds a seemingly innocent doll that seems to have a life of its own.
David F. Sandberg does seem to know how to do horror since his last film Lights Out wasn’t actually bad and it was one of the best horror movies to come out last year. So, with his direction coming to this, he does a good job at creating a good atmosphere and tense imagery because of how well-made this turned out along with the cinematography. The first Annabelle did a terrible job at providing the sacres that were supposed to be effective.
The acting is a lot better in here, and that’s mainly because of the two main girls Janice (Talitha Bateman) and Linda (Lulu Wilson). Both of them give terrific performances for how young they are in a horror flick. They’re the main orphans who want to be adopted together by the same parents and their friendship was honestly believable to make me care about them. Really didn’t think that was possible.
The story does feel a little familiar, but it ties into the other films well enough to understand its purpose. But I was thinking do we really need how Annabelle came to be? Because I always wanted the mystery behind some of genres best villain. Anytime Annabelle is used does seem to be cheesy at first, but gained to be effectively creepy. This also gives the chance to make us like the characters, with the expectations of a few of the other girls.
Where the movie falters is that it wasn’t really all that scary, in my opinion. None of the jump scares didn’t necessarily frighten me. They just felt too predictable where the music goes down and there’s silence or the door moves and somebody’s behind it. Another problem is that the third act didn’t grab me.
Maybe studios should do the same of having a terrible movie and have a sequel that’s surprisingly good. Just learn from dumb mistakes so another one won’t be made, no matter how much the first one made at the box office. For example, Ouija: Origin of Evil turned out to be a good prequel to a shitty movie from what I heard. Oddly enough, Lulu Wilson was also in this, which was a prequel too.
But I was shocked not hating it when it ended. This was a lot better than the first movie by a long shot. Though this should’ve been scarier for what it was attending. Does this make me excited about The Nun, the next spin-off in The Conjuring series? Personally, I didn’t think we needed to know the backstory of this mysterious entity. For me, it was only alright, but some people, they will enjoy Annabelle: Creation as it’s at least a good addition to the series.
Though the scares aren’t really that terrifying, Annabelle: Creation is definitely an improvement over its predecessor.