Story Spoiler Free!
It's been too long since my last post, but this is something that I couldn't pass up writing about! I feel like I can finally put my bout of writer's block behind me as I write about one of my favorite film genres: horror. Ever since I was a kid, my father raised me watching all types of horror movies, stretching from every decade, even as early as the 1930's. I've seen just about every cliché, monster, and story that you can think of. With all of that being said, The Conjuring (2013) was one of my favorites in recent years, and the sequel only carries that love for me.
I just came home from seeing it and I thought it was great! Just like with the first film, I was on edge most of the time and I was taken by surprise more times that I thought I'd be. Here are the three things that I truly appreciated in The Conjuring 2.
1. Ed (Patrick Wilson) Was So Much More Involved
What I mean by that header is that I felt that the first film was more of an emphasis on Lorraine (Vera Farmiga) and her abilities and that Ed became more of a supporting character. That's not to say that he was hardly there, just that the focus didn't ever seem to be on him until the end of the first film. This time around, he's much more prominent and the attention is shared between both of the Warrens and not just Lorraine.
After reading a book by Gerald Brittle about the Warrens' career titled The Demonologist, I began to understand just a piece of what the couple went through on their travels, especially Ed. He was an extraordinary man and held a lot of ministry, despite not being an ordained priest, and was the only recognized demonologist outside of the church at that time. With his wife by his side, Ed was a pioneer in the world of demonic research and investigation, and he deserves praise in these films. Rest in Peace, sir.
2. It Kept Me on Edge Throughout
Have you ever watched a scary movie and then gone into your bathroom, opened your medicine cabinet, and just automatically assumed there would be something behind you in the mirror? Of course you have. That's one of the clichés that predictable horror films have taught you to look for. One of my favorite things about these two films is that through James Wan's directional style, you're fooled into looking for those clichés, but you end up taking your eyes off the spot where something's actually going to happen.
Because of this trickery, I felt like once everything started really happening in the film, I stayed relatively tense through the rest of it. Normally I'm able to predict the things that happen in a horror movie, but both of The Conjuring films challenged my ability to do so and that's why I love them so much. The trailer does a fine job of conveying that tension.
3. Joseph Bishara's Score
No great horror movie is truly complete without great music, and Bishara is a master when it comes to composing creepy music. Collaborating with James Wan on multiple projects, Bishara has composed the score to multiple lesser known horror films, but his most notable works include the Insidious series, both of the Conjuring films, and Annabelle. He does a great job at making the music as much a part of the movie as what you're seeing on screen, and just as much of a factor in your fear. I expect he'll continue working with Wan on any future horror films he's involved with (hopefully that Saw reboot we've all heard so little about.)
A fun fact about Bishara is that he didn't just compose for the films, he was also the Lipstick-Face Demon in the first and third Insidious films, as well as Bathsheba in the first Conjuring installment.
I definitely recommend The Conjuring 2 for any fans of the first film, and for horror in general. For those of you who've seen it, what did you like or dislike about it? Share your answers and general thoughts about the film in the comments!
Sources: Google.com (Images), IMDb.com