Annabelle is a prequel of sorts to last year’s sleeper hit, The Conjuring (you can read my review here). You don’t need to have seen The Conjuring to enjoy Annabelle because the two movies have little to do with each other, this doll being the link.
This movie recounts the doll’s story, how she came to be possessed by an evil demon and how she came to be so frightening that she is kept locked behind glass and blessed twice a week by a priest.
The film opens in the late 1960’s when a spate of satanic cult murders have shocked the world. Newlyweds Mia (Wallis) and John (Horton) are just weeks away from the arrival of their first child when their neighbours are brutally murdered by their daughter Annabelle and her boyfriend. After murdering her parents, Annabelle manages to get into Mia and John’s house and she is shot dead by the police holding onto the doll who will become her namesake.
It transpires that Annabelle and her boyfriend had been conjuring up evil demons (tsk tsk tsk) and upon Annabelle’s death, the demon attached itself to the doll. So now the doll is a conduit for the demon.
Things get really weird for Mia and John and she insists she will no longer live in the house, so they move to an apartment in the city.
The movie picks up a few months later and Mia has delivered a gorgeous healthy baby girl and all is well. Except it’s not.
All the weirdness starts again and begins to escalate, with the baby being the focus. Mia tries to get help from John but he pretty much writes it all off as post natal depression. Actually, John is a bit of a dick in this movie and quite ineffectual as either father or husband. A sign of the times? Hmmm maybe…but still. He really is a secondary character and could have been killed off in the first 15 and the movie would not have suffered.
This movie genuinely surprised me. I wasnt all that keen to see it to be honest but it was really good. A new mother who knows she isn’t going crazy but can find very little support or help, a useless husband, weird noises from the apartment above, bizarre kiddies on the stairs, a dark, dark underground storage unit and a few red herrings thrown in for good measure.
It’s a great little horror movie, hardly a classic in the making but will certainly offer a few frights. One not to miss for our horror buffs.
Love Flick xx
Director : John R. Leonetti
Starring : Ward Horton, Annabelle Wallis, Alfre Woodard, Tony Amendola, Kerry O’Malley, Brian Howe, Eric Ladin, Ivar Brogger, Gabriel Bateman
Running Time : 98 minutes
Release Date : 2 October 2014