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So as you know, I stopped writing lengthy reviews on this site this year, keeping the blog as more of a film diary of sorts.  Lo and behold,...

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Movie Review - Annabelle

Annabelle (2014)
Starring Annabelle Wallis, Ward Horton, and Alfre Woodard
Directed by John R. Leonetti

The Conjuring made my list of Best Films of 2013 at last year's RyMickey Awards so I admittedly had some hopes that this "prequel" of sorts would measure up to the chills of its predecessor.  Annabelle will also likely show up on a RyMickey Award list -- for the Worst Films of 2014.  With nary a tense moment, this poorly directed and poorly acted flick proves to be a huge letdown and has officially diminished any excitement this series of films had for me.

In The Conjuring, we were brought into the lives of Ed and Lorraine Wilson who had a large array of "paranormally inhabited" objects in their home -- one of which was a large porcelain doll whose creepy appearance alluded to some nefarious shenanigans.  Annabelle is the story of this doll who is brought into the lives of doll collector Mia (Annabelle Wallis) and her husband John (Ward Horton) after John finds the toy after much searching.  One evening, a pregnant Mia is attacked in her home by two members of a cult who are shot and killed with the blood of one member dripping onto the doll and creating some supernatural possession...and, in turn, causing much chaos for Mia, John, and their infant daughter.

It should be noted that it took me about twenty minutes to write the above horribly formulated summary paragraph and I'm sure that's because of the idiocy of the whole film.  Director John R. Leonetti does a horrible job at extracting any chills from the admittedly silly story, crafting a mind-numbingly paint-by-numbers experience that could've been helmed by anyone who's ever seen a horror film before.  We're also treated to a master class in Horribly Bad Horror School Acting from Annabelle Wallis who was obviously told to do a whole lot of nervous shaking, gasping for breath, and the go-to motion of placing your hand over your mouth and screaming loudly.  Ugh...poor Ms. Wallis.  I actually thought she was decent throughout the film's first half, but once the horror aspects kicked into gear, she just became laughably awful -- a fault of her own and her director's to be sure.

What a disappointment especially considering how fantastic The Conjuring is.

The RyMickey Rating:  D-

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