Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Post Mortem: Annabelle

     A strange prequel in that it attempted to explain the history of a trinket from the first movie, not the protagonist or antagonist. A movie about Beth Sheba (From The Conjuring) would almost seem more appropriate. Instead, James Wan went with Annabelle, the doll that was possessed by a demon and haunting nurses in the first movie.

     In her debut movie, Annabelle does not disappoint. The movie starts with how the doll, in fact, becomes the host for a demon. The explanation is given and residual hauntings begin. Just as in The Conjuring, the demon causes things to move, books to stack, chairs to rock and the doll to move about of its own accord, just always off camera. Several times Wan teases the crowd by leaving the camera in a room with the doll, focused on it for an additional ten seconds, making us believe the doll will move. Fortunately for most people's bladders, it never does.
     Now, where the water gets muddied for me is where the ghost of Annabelle Higgins, a mad cultist that killed herself while holding the doll, seems to appear and act as a separate entity than the demon, which makes an actual appearance several times in the film. Annabelle Higgens ghost seems to follow the doll around and act as a calling card that something bad is about to happen. She shows herself to a priest as he is about to bring the doll onto holy ground, she shows herself in the reflection of a doorway, she even moves about the room while the mother is asleep, admiring the baby.
     The only reason I bring this up is that the first movie states that human ghosts don't possess objects. They don't haunt in the fashion that Annabelle Higgens is clearly haunting. So are they wrong and ghosts can do this, or is the demon merely taking Annabelle Higgens form to be less terrifying when spotted? This, sadly, is never addressed. The third stage of a haunting also never comes to pass in this scenario, where a possession takes place.
     Remember in The Conjuring when it is explained that the three steps all essentially lead up to possession so that the demon can cause a ruckus? In Annabelle when it is explained that the three steps all essentially lead up to possession so that the demon can cause a ruckus? In Annabelle, it was doing the first two steps (like Hell I must say) but it wanted something different than a haunting. No, it wanted a soul.
     Now I am never one to ruin a movie for anyone, so I suggest that if you want to see this movie you see it for yourself. It relies on suspense, good acting and quality gimmicks to bring forth the fear that Annabelle exudes. Truly another masterpiece that I will personally own when the movie comes out, I urge every one of my readers to watch this film and enjoy it for what it is, as both a stand alone movie and as a prequel.
     Sweet Dreams

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