The Conjuring

The Conjuring ★★★★

80/100

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From minimalist SAW to horrifying INSIDIOUS, from action packed F7 to DCEU's AQUAMAN whatever this guy has made, that somehow works and works brilliantly that creates a tremendous influence on rest of the follow up chapters of these names. And this guy is one and only James Wan. The thing is this man knows his shits as he always do a little "something" that changes a lot in a film's predictable box office status and that has been spotted allready in revolutionary comeback of FAST AND FURIOUS film series with it's 7th installment and also has been evident in making a not-so-interesting-looking DCEU character interesting and makes sure it's commercial success. But what he did in THE CONJURING that has been creating a history in horror filmmaking, a worldwide popular classic horror which may be first horror entry that successfully intimidated everyone shit-out-of- themselves specially in theatres. Again this just not only jumpscares or sound design tactics or different usual horror tropes that made it work, no jumpscares are definitely scary af but there's "something" in James Wan's signature lingering long takes and oftenly used wide angle lenses..it's as if the camera itself may represent the gaze of some undefined phantom menace which somehow stans in somewhat middle of the works of the great classic horror producer Val Lewton who invents the slow burning horror which chills in the spine and that doesn't go away in time that stays right under the skin and the works of master of suspense Hitchcock who had shown his characters are doing something but what they're doing that would've been disclosed with time slowly, and Wan creates that similar ominous anticipation that anything could happen but he doesn't stretch his suspense too long, rather he creates multiple peaks in every 10 or 15 minutes by constantly creating and releasing suspense.


Mood is the most necessary thing in horror films. The atmosphere, the setting, every sets and frames needs to have enough potential that makes us feel "unsettle" and THE CONJURING has that essence. Even if I look every frame of that countryside farmhouse where Perrons have accustomed...the kitchen, the rooms, the outside tree at near the large lake, the terrace, the cabinet, the dining room and even the furnitures..everything has even felt equally chilling just in some online pics too. That's it's success as the pictures of those frames and sets all have been stored in my head for forever that doesn't go away, it stays and it chills. And on the top of these horrifying setups and jumpscares, suffering and panicks of Perron family members in first half of the movie specially is felt like a chef's kiss. That's definitely where 80% strength of the movie lies. Mr. Perron and his wife has shared a lovely husband-wife dynamics, they have very friendly understanding over each other's situations, moreover they care for each other. They have a large lot of children..five daughters and they also have a sweet dog, Saddie. When it comes to general horror movie's usual cliched horror texture it comes in three basic steps..in Warren's words whenever a demon try to possess over someone, it needs to follow following three principle steps in order i.e infestation, oppression and possession. The first segment that's infestation, it's the core of a horror film where we don't know about nothing, except a vague idea that a ghost or whatever demonic evil entity is in it's way to possess over someone, we don't know who, we don't know when! There lies the atmost suspense as every 7 members of the family individually have experienced their individual horrors. And the best part of THE CONJURING is in it's first section specially as it splits it's total runtime in seven section to make us feel the terror in ever single one's perspective. That "Hide and Clap" scene is a gem in using horror tropes in films. And no matter how much cliched it looks like, but this specific section of any horror film never ever bores me. Anyways next section i.e in Warren's word "oppression"...where the evil demonic spirit is just started to show it's dominance over the family and takes it's eyes on whoever it targets to possess, slowly tries to snatch away the control over her consciousness while for confusing others quite frequently it controls the most vulnerable one by breaking in to her external resilience as when her own self is sleeping at night. In this part, members of the family must has get some visions where they just not only able to see the demonic spirit but also may gets attacked by it. But the interesting thing is the panick, the tension, the fear has always lingered with everyone of the family even in this section too. There was a brilliant over the shoulder shot that borrows techniques from other shots. The scene follows eldest daughter of the Perron family getting attacked by the evil entity who was in top of a cabinet..and it was for the first time where that demon try to attack someone. An low angle looking up towards the entity that is on top of the cabinet is combined with an over the shoulder shot which makes sense because the character is smaller as she is younger. This use of cinematography helps the audience understand the terror in the girls as we are quickly scared too. This is the first time we have seen the entity and it is presented on top of the cabinet looking down on the victims as well as the audience. This shot makes the audience relate to the character and understand the scene even more better way as we feel like we are trapped in the room too. Now presumably most boring section of the film comes into play as we know the invietable conclusion..that as like always this family might has summoned the Warrens to come and take a look of their house. And again as like always these Warren couple do their job in best way possible by successfully transporting that evil entity (who has been lurking there freely) to back in hell. But impressibely Warrens' entry makes all of these events even much more interesting. There was a subplot of Warren's family itself too..many references of ANABELLE along with a sweet relationship between Ed, Lauren and their daughter, Judy...it doesn't spoil the simultaneous suspenseful horrors of Perron family, rather quite opposite it strengthens the Warren familiy's grip over this conjuring universe. That's why whatever happens, whoever comes, film has never lost it's momentum, always uses unsettling calm moments to create the suspense, then eerie low level background score that hints us something is coming, then a false alarm to confuse us and then all of a sudden a heart bumping jumpscare...actually this 10 seconds' suspenseful moments in a 10 or 15 minutes' gap is the main weapon of a general horror film and in CONJUNRING it's the peak! these every 10 or 15 seconds is felt just like it's holding my neck too tightly that I can't even breathe and soon all of a sudden it loosens it's grip on my neck, I feel free but just when I try to take a little breathe then a sudden blow in my head that makes me even much more uncomfortable and uneasy to take breathe. And that so called "kick" or "blow" I still have felt at so many times even in this fifth rewatching of THE CONJURING.

Lastly one may can criticize 2013's THE CONJURING by saying that it's biggest failure is it's straight forward storyline with allready familiar and habituated ghosts, yeh that's totally justified, but he/she never can neglect the innovative stylization and sincerity of Wan who can even show his innovation inside a cliched horror genre filmmaking methodology with just a simple story of "a demon who tries to possess a family has been forcibly taken back into hell".
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🔙Hey Ram(2000)...

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