The Conjuring

The Conjuring ★★★★

Vastly underestimated this in theaters (as I hadn't revisited since), but Wan is so in control, and so effortlessly pulling something off that feels classically executed and rooted in character first/scares second construction. Sure, there's some tropes being tossed in (and a few scenes, such as the "filmed" moments) that are too gimmicky for their own good, but every single actor is so perfectly cast you really don't give a shit. Wilson and Farmiga were basically born to play the Warrens: these pure, noble soldiers of light against an encroaching darkness they can hold off if they just believe in each other. Corny? Sure. But we live in such an oppressively bleak time that it's nice to have heroes whose powers are essentially love for one another, their fellow man, and their own belief structure, while also actively acknowledging that any of these things can be torn down at a moment's notice. My only complaint is that I wish this were shot on film. Imagine the texture Wan could manufacture in those creepy cobwebbed spaces with actual celluloid. Oh well, this roars with such a true commitment and compassion that I can overlook my own aesthetic qualms.

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