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Peter T Chattaway

The Conjuring 2

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Links to our threads on The Conjuring (2013), Annabelle (2014) and Annabelle 2 (in development).

Coming June 10.

https://youtu.be/KyA9AtUOqRM

I will so, so enjoy it when the video embeds work reliably again.

Edited by Peter T Chattaway

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I liked it. Got frequent chills while watching it in the theatre. And there are a few good jumps too. But it's made even better by the fact that the story is centred around this loving Catholic couple. Whatever the film's relationship to the facts might be, it certainly works *as a film*. My only complaint, if that's the word, is that it began to feel a bit long to me -- mainly a consequence of the fact that there are two parallel storylines (the Warrens over here, the haunted English family over there) and each story has its own arc. If one story were clearly a subplot of the other's, the film might not have had those structural issues, but as it is, the two plots are put on roughly equal footing right up to the end.

One thing my interview (as posted) *doesn't* get into is a bit of foreshadowing that is *very* subtle but which I somehow caught anyway. The other reporters I spoke to afterwards hadn't noticed the foreshadowing at all, so I asked Wan about it directly during our one-on-one, and he confirmed that I wasn't imagining anything. But... I couldn't figure out any way to include that exchange in the posted interview without ticking off the spoilerphobes. So I left it out altogether.

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I'm hoping to see it sometime next week.  For now i'll note that I'm currently reading a book where the author interacts with several demonologists, pastors, and exorcists from a variety of branches of Christianity who are all saying that these types of phenomena have seen an increase in activity since 2002.   

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This movie is a breath of fresh air in a stagnating genre (outside of a few good indie horrors recently). A true ghost horror film that doesn't shy away from quiet, hauntingly beautiful moments. Patrick Wilson taking a moment to sing Can't Help Falling In Love is one of the best parts of the film (and sure proof he should play Elvis in a Presley biopic). The scariest moments surround the fear of the loss of their rock hard relationship to the dangers of their profession. But the movie strongly gives God the win as the one who kicks demon butt and protects this intrepid couple in their loving, egalitarian, save each other adventures. I haven't loved many movies this year, but this is definitely one of them. And one of the best sequels I've ever seen. This movie is just so Christian too (deeply Catholic), and I haven't seen many as deeply Catholic since Derrickson's Deliver Us From Evil. Peter is right that sometimes it felt overlong, but it was just great anyways. Loved it.

Oh and one of my favorite things was walking out of the theater and one of the young people exclaiming "I'm going to church tomorrow."

Edited by Justin Hanvey

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On 6/7/2016 at 3:26 PM, Peter T Chattaway said:

I liked it. Got frequent chills while watching it in the theatre. And there are a few good jumps too. But it's made even better by the fact that the story is centred around this loving Catholic couple. Whatever the film's relationship to the facts might be, it certainly works *as a film*. My only complaint, if that's the word, is that it began to feel a bit long to me -- mainly a consequence of the fact that there are two parallel storylines (the Warrens over here, the haunted English family over there) and each story has its own arc. If one story were clearly a subplot of the other's, the film might not have had those structural issues, but as it is, the two plots are put on roughly equal footing right up to the end.

Yes to all this.

Here's the last paragraph of my review

Ultimately, the most persuasive image of goodness may not be crosses or crucifixes, but the Warrens themselves, who are so decent, upright and loving, they’re almost too good to be true. (How many movies can you say that about?) A spirit of positivity, solidarity and even fun is as important as anything else Ed brings to Enfield. If malicious spirits are drawn to negative emotions, a guitar and a sense of humor might be as useful in their own way as a crucifix in banishing darkness.

I did feel that the Warrens had been promoted from important supporting characters in someone else's story (as they were, I think, in the original Conjuring) to protagonists in their own right, although I'm not sure if the afflicted family have been clearly demoted to supporting characters in the Warrens' story. 

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2 hours ago, Justin Hanvey said:

Oh and one of my favorite things was walking out of the theater and one of the young people exclaiming "I'm going to church tomorrow."

:D

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FWIW, my assistant wrote up an interview with Christian screenwriters Chad and Carey Hayes. Less about the movie than about their process, which I liked hearing about. (I appreciated their pointing out Cameron as an influence, because I think him a better writer than he gets credit for.

Quote

 

Carey and Chad Hayes have been writing together since they were sixteen years old, and work terrifically as a team. The first thing they do, of course, is find (or create) a story they want to tell. “We develop a story that we can tell from the beginning to the end,” Carey says. Once they have found something worthy of being heard, the brothers “arbitrarily” assign different acts of the story to each other and write them. Then, they “flip” the acts and “rewrite each other” back and forth until they are both happy with the product.

The brothers know and understand each other well, and if either of them does not like what the other has written, they express their thoughts, fix the screenplay, and move on. “There’s not much ego involved,” Carey says. After explaining their process, Chad laughed and admitted “I don’t know how people write by themselves, actually.”

 

 

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I've seen this twice now and want to echo the praise of others. The Warrens are one of my favorite character couples that I've seen in a long time. They trust each other, listen to each other, intensely love each other, could not live without the other. Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga are all in on embodying these characters in a believable way. 

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