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Movies Ashdoc's Movie Review - The Conjuring


Movie Critic
Jul 19, 2011
Horror comes striking back with THE CONJURING....

Depending on how much you believe in spirits and all that stuff ( I dont ; except when I am in dark and lonely houses and on the night I have watched a horror movie ---tonight !! ) , you are supposed to believe that this is based on a true story .

A family with several kids ( daughters ) moves into a house in the countryside and begins to settle in . Amazingly , they seem to have not made any enquiries about the past history of the house and move in directly without further ado. The have put all their money on the house and there is no way they can now move out after they have found out .

The countryside setting means that real estate prices are lower than cities which gives rise to large houses with attics and cellars and plenty of space for running around when the fun...err....horror starts . There are a lot of trees that hide even the moonlight at night . Also there are no street lights like there are in cities and so the nights are dark and eerie with not a soul moving anywhere nearby the house . The inhabitants of the house are all alone---fearsome....

The family's dog refuses to enter the house ; dogs are supposed to sense spirits . But that does not save it---it's found dead soon . That's the first sign that something's wrong....
Then dead birds begin to drop around the house....

The director builds the tension slowly rather than launching directly into the realms of terror . That's typical Hollywood rather than Bollywood where the ghost loses no time in making extravagant screeching and howling noises .

Indeed , in the first 20 to 25 minutes the film relies on it's reputation as a horror movie rather than the horror itself to frighten us . Small seemingly innocuous things happen which feel sinister and we begin to squirm in our seats .

The large number of females in the house makes it tailormade for a horror situation . Females always look more vulnerable than males and nothing is better for a horror movie than the sight of a female screaming and shouting in sheer terror .

Of course , some of the females in the movie are small children . Typically , they are the ones who make contact with the spirits first ( like in all horror movies---horror movie spirits always start with infecting small children ; or is this also true in real life if spirits really exist ?? ) . Being small children however they dont understand who they are dealing with , and make ' friends ' with the spirit ---again like in all horror what's new ??

Things get more serious with marks appearing on the bodies of elders and the older children feeling dragged out of their beds at night . Strange smells begin to permeate the atmosphere .

The situation really perks up with the discovery of a dark cellar . And the cellar is centerpiece of all the action that unfolds---do you even have to guess that....??

The director does have some good tricks up his sleeve . Rather than opening fast , any door opens only slowly . Similarly , if a person is walking towards danger , he or she walks oh so slowly....
And all the time the door takes to open or the person is walking towards danger ( oh so slowly... ) we are at the edge of our seat waiting to see what happens next , with our hair standing on end .

The terror that ensues leads to the callup to the house of a couple who have the ability to sense spirits and make them go away . They are the real heroes of the movie and the latter half of the film is dominated by them---that is , when the spirit allows them to do that....

....For the real machine of entertainment for the audience is the spirit itself , and when it manifests itself time and again we get real value for our money spent on buying tickets for the movie .

The girls in the audience were screaming at the right junctures , but one thing I noticed however---they screamed only when women or girls were in trouble and not when men were in trouble . Why such partiality for their own gender , I wonder ?? But not to ponder , for women are a mystery men are yet to solve....he he....

Coming back to the movie , the exorcist couple brings their whole team with cameras and voice recorders and the works , and discovers the history of the house---of witches and murdered children ; all of which happened in the past . What they discover more sinisterly however is that the family they have arrived to protect is in deadly danger of being annihilated.....

But is that the only family affected ?? Or the spirits can attack the exorcist couple and their children too ?? And can they successfully complete their task of getting rid of the spirit ??
Go and watch the movie for answers to these questions....

The movie is promising in the opening section and entertains in the middle section . In fact it is when the ghost is subtly making its presence felt that it gives most jitters . In the last section of the movie however , the actual manifestation of the spirit and the exorcism with jumping up and down of bodies and the blood spitting from mouth is less terrifying than expected largely because it has been seen in other movies before .

Still the film does deliver some doses of terror---and we do need them once in while don't we.....

Verdict---decent enough .


1947-2014 (Archived)
Jun 17, 2004
Re: Ashdoc's movie review---The conjuring

ashdoc ji

I really love it that you are posting these reviews at SPN. It is original, creative, and well-done. Moreover, it peps things up here. It helps to add content to our Movie/Cinema section.

Thank you for doing this.

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