A long time ago, in a millennium far removed, I enjoyed a good, titillating, hair- raising horror flick; that ceased to be when the genre sunk to the lowest level of sensationalism; when the protagonist never died (“Michael”, “Jason”) when massacres became nothing but a torturous homage to mutilation. The key to a successful, terrifying, flesh-tingling film lies in the possibility of its reality; could these phenomenon’s actually have occurred? Herein, resides the uniqueness, genuine appeal of “The Conjuring”.
Based on actual events in the early 1970’s, Demonologists Ed and Lorraine Warren (dynamic, sincere performances by Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga) are recruited to purify the home of the Perron family, possessed by iniquitous, vile, demonic spirits; the Perron’s have five daughters all targets of the vengeful, deceased owners of their haunted, poisoned, possessed home.
Lily Taylor gives a career-defining performance as “Carolyn Peron” the envied subject of the strongest demon; watching as her fidelity and love for her family is challenged by malevolent, diabolical forces, she sinks, and rises to the myriad of tests.
In conclusion, this is a scary movie; never eliciting laughter in the wrong places; questioning, wondering, eventually accepting the unexplained prevalence of corrupt phantoms, apparitions clamoring for an exorcism.