The Conjuring 2

I loved 2013’s “The Conjuring”.

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After a decade of torture porn it was great to have an old fashioned horror movie that genuinely scared you.

Last Friday night my husband and I joined a group of friends to see “The Conjuring 2” on opening night.

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I haven’t been to a movie on opening night in a while. I forgot how much fun it is to see a scary movie with a large crowd. Not only is it fun to scream it is fun to scream with other people.

I went into the movie expecting to be disappointed. After all, most sequels don’t live up to the originals, especially horror sequels, but I wasn’t disappointed at all. I was entertained from start to finish. I was invested in the story. Not to mention I, my husband and our friends all screamed multiple times. It was a blast to scream and then join everybody else in the theatre in laughing that we all screamed at the same time.

While the story in the first Conjuring focused on a family in New England this one focuses on a single mom and her children in England. There is an interesting shout out to the events in Amityville at the beginning but the film very much focuses on the events in England. The filmmakers faced an interesting challenge this time around. The first film focused more on the family with Ed (Patrick Wilson) and Lorraine (Academy Award nominee Vera Farmiga) in the supporting roles. This time around the filmmakers split the attention more equally. Since our emotional attachment is with Ed and Lorraine from the first film it makes sense that they would get more screen time this time around.

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At the beginning of the movie it almost felt like the storylines with Ed and Lorraine were detached with the family in England but the film did a really good job of connecting them when all was said and done.

My one issue with the film is I found myself not as invested with the family as I was in the first film. That doesn’t mean I wasn’t rooting for them but I didn’t care as much this time. I think that’s because in the first film the mom and dad were played by Lili Taylor and Ron Livingston, actors you’re familiar with and I think that creates a natural emotional attachment.

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I wasn’t familiar with actors that played the English family so that connection just wasn’t there.

For a horror movie the acting was good. I think Vera Farmiga and Patrick Wilson can both be better but they act to the genre they are in. I don’t mean that as a slam against horror movies. I love horror movies I just think they require a different style of acting than Farmiga gave in “The Departed” and “Up in the Air” and Patrick Wilson gave in “Angels in America” and “Little Children”.

It’s always easy to pick apart any film when it’s done, especially a horror film. So the issues me, my husband and our friends discussed afterwards don’t really matter. What matters is that when the film was playing we were all entertained and scared and that made it more than worth the price of admission. I highly, highly recommend “The Conjuring 2” for anybody who likes a good scare.

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Here is a description:

Justin Gomez and his sister, Terri, have never been close. Separated by nine years and distant in adulthood, Justin and Terri have little in common, except for the love of her three children. In the days before they embark on a road trip to visit the father that once abandoned them and their now deceased mother, both Terri and Justin are dealing with unexpected changes in their lives. Justin surprisingly realizes he might want more than a series of one night stands after a first date goes unexpectedly well. After a lifetime of being a strong type A personality, Terri is forced to confront the reality of the end of her marriage. As they hit the road, with Terri’s children in tow, they find themselves forced to rely on and confide in each other following a devastating event. Confronted with memories from the past and challenges from the present, Terri and Justin must dig deep and unearth the truth about themselves and their parents in order to build a new family based on their love for each other.

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