From the maker of the “Insidious” movies comes the prequel to “The Conjuring.” “Annabelle,” directed by James Wan, is the new movie that is sure to make viewers terrified of dolls.
The story begins the year before the events of “The Conjuring.” When couple Mia (Annabelle Wallis) and John Gordon (Ward Horton) plan to have a baby, John buys Mia a doll she has been wanting for her collection. The doll is snatched by their parent-murdering neighbor, Annabelle Higgins (Keira Daniels), who then uses a Satanic cult ritual to seal her soul in Mia’s doll. When the doll is found with after the murder, it is returned to the Gordon’s. Mia, believing the doll had something to do with the murder, throws it away and has her baby.
When the Gordons move, they find the thrown out doll with the others, and the doll soon begins to cause paranormal plagues to Mia and the new baby. The family soon finds out it is the soul of Annabelle in the doll who wants to take the baby’s soul to summon a demon as she originally planned to try with her parent’s souls. Now it is up to Mia and John to save their baby and themselves from this Satanic cultist’s new form that is lurking in their new home.
Having one of the main creepy things from the first movie was a smart move on James Wan’s part, bringing the backstory of the doll into play. With the doll having a very creepy smile and being able to call upon borderline demonic paranormal entities, it makes for great thrills and scary moments through the duration of the film. The doll herself looks very demonic as, after being thrown away, she comes back looking more deranged, beaten up, and broken.
The only issues with this movie is that the scares could have been less based on jump scares and more on the psychic fear from the presence of the doll. Another issue is the predictability in the movie, with many scenes including cliché aspects like creaking floorboards and kitchen appliances being thrown, which are seen in multiple paranormal horror films. Predictability can make some viewers not get the same scares as others after seeing closely related scenes from other films repetitively, bringing the horror proportion of the film lower than others horror films.
With all that this movie gives to the viewer, it does not break the same formula that James Wan has been using in most of his past horror movies. Even the Chucky doll “Child’s Play” franchise had better impressions than this film leaves the viewer. This film gets a 3.5/5 rating from this writer. Even though it has its flaws it still is a decent horror movie to see this October, but for a better killer possessed doll movie, check out the 1988 horror film, “Child’s Play” featuring iconic horror slasher Charles Lee Ray, otherwise known as Chucky the Killer Doll.