The Conjuring: "Want To Play A Game Of Hide And Clap"

Director: James Wan
Writer:    Chad Hayes
               Carey Hayes
Starring: Vera Farmiga
               Patrick Wilson
               Lili Taylor
               Ron Livingston
               Shanley Caswell
               Hayley McFarland
               Joey King
               Mackenzie Foy
               Kyla Deaver
               Shannon Kook
               John Brotherton
Rating:    *****

Release Date: 02/08/2013

It is no secret that horror is quite honestly my favourite genre of film; the sense of anxiety you get as the scenes tension builds, the thrill you get from a genuine scare, and finally that moment of relief when you begin to get over the initial scare means that any trip to the cinema will fill you with excitement. What makes me even happier is that with the abundance of haunted house and ghost stories the horror genre is filled with at the moment, directors like James Wan still manage to keep things fresh and scare me over and over again.

Patrick Wilson
Carolyn and Roger Perron (Taylor & Livingston) are a kind married couple who are in the middle of moving into a large, secluded and slightly rundown old farm house in the country. With them are their five daughters and a feeling of excitement and joy as they look to their new future. What they don't quite expect is the spirit of the houses former owner taking a dislike to them and doing anything she can to get them to leave, whether it possessing the mother, attempting to kill the children, or playing a game of Hide and Clap.

It all begins to get too much for the family, and out of fear they are forced to live only in the living room together. In an act of shear desperation the Perron's turn to the help of a famous ghost hunting couple, Lorraine and Ed Warren (Farmiga & Wilson). The Warrens come and inspect the house, and from the moment the walk through the door Lorraine gets and instant feeling of unease as the evil spirit shows herself. The couple do all they can to help the family, but ultimately they must perform an exorcism, and it is here that the film kicks itself into high gear, bringing the film to it's intense and ultimately terrifying finale.

Vera Farmiga
The cast is terrific and their performances not only allow you to care and feel for them, but they also make the film so much more scarier. Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga already have enough experience in these sorts of films so it all comes to them with ease, but Lili Taylor was the true standout for me. It's the first horror I have seen her in since 1999's camp-fest The Haunting (which I loved), and she performs with such grace, terror and warmth that you sit in the theatre willing her on and praying she survives and gets through it. Not only is she superb in the straight acting parts, but when she is forced to let loose and go a bit 'crazy' she excels again, and really shows movie goers what she is capable of.

I have watched this film twice and I got scared both times and noticed something different when I saw it; this is all down to the brilliant direction of James Wan. He knows what it is that makes an audience tick, he know how long to build the tension for, and he most definitely knows how pack the punches and bring the genuine terror. Occasionally the scares are a bit cliched, but more often than not they are turned on their heads. Youre sit there thinking 'I know whats coming next', then out of nowhere you are blindsided and the jump comes from elsewhere. It is a ridiculously chilling thrill ride, and you will most definitely leave the theatre a jibbering wreck. It won't be in cinemas for much longer, so go and see it now.

The Conjuring - Trailer


  1. Good review James. It wasn't as scary as I was expecting it to be, but still a whole bunch of fun by the way it just continues to throw on terror-upon-terror.


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