Moderator / Reviewer
- Apr 4, 2017
My AV System
- Preamp, Processor or Receiver
- Yamaha TRS-7850 Atmos Receiver
- Other Amp
- Peavy IPR 3000 for subs
- Universal / Blu-ray / CD Player
- Sony ubx800 4K UHD Player
- Front Speakers
- Cheap Thrills Mains
- Center Channel Speaker
- Cheap Thrills Center
- Surround Speakers
- Volt 10 Surrounds
- Surround Back Speakers
- Volt 10 Rear Surrounds
- Rear Height Speakers
- Volt 6 Overheads
- 2x Marty subs (full size with SI 18's)
- Video Display Device
- Sony 85 inch X950H FALD TV
I’m still amazed at how much traffic the Annabelle movies have gotten over the years. The Conjuring was a smash hit that no one saw coming, and the first Annabelle movie was kind of seen as a joke. A spinoff based off of a creepy doll shown for a few seconds in the background during The Conjuring. Yet Warner Brothers has not only made a full world building franchise out of The Conjuring movies (number 3 is on the way soon), but also 3 full Annabelle movies, as well as a few little off sprouts such as The Nun and The Curse of La Llorona. I’ve actually enjoyed the Annabelle movies out of all the spin offs, as they’ve been continually creepy, if not a bit rote, and pretty much pure popcorn jump scare fun. Nothing wild, they’re not going to turn the horror industry on it’s ear like the original The Conjuring, but they’re goofy fun and the last Annabelle movie was actually REALLY creepy. This third outing, though, acts as a prequel to The Conjuring, explaining how the doll ends up with the Warrens (played by Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga), and is a little more cookie cutter and family friendly than the other two (although it does feature the Warrens themselves, almost making it feel like a Conjuring movie more than an Annabelle one).
Ed (Patrick Wilson) and Lorraine Warren (Vera Farmiga) have just come into possession of the Annabelle doll for the first time (the first two films were prequels to this, and this being a prequel to The Conjuring in its time frame) and after a short stint with it’s demonic powers, realizes that it is a beacon for evil spirits. Locking the doll up in a glass chest made from the plate glass from a church window, they have contained the evil power of the doll, and keep it away from the rest of humanity. Some time later they leave their daughter Judy (Mckenna Grace) with their normal babysitter Mary Ellen (Madison Iseman) for the evening, which unleashes a chain of events that will teach the young girls, that some things are hoaxes, and some things definitely are not.
All is going well, with Mary Ellen and Judy prepping a cake for the young girls upcoming birthday (which no one seems to want to go to due to her parents creepy spiritual escapades in the local news), but soon things get out of control when Mary Ellen’s friend Daniela (Katie Sarife) comes over with an ulterior motive. Her father has just recently died in a car accident, and the poor girl is stricken with grief believing that it was her fault. She figures that by going into the Warren’s “evil” little study den of spiritual trinkets, she can somehow talk to her father and get some closure. BUUUUUUUUUT, the doorway that she opens is the wrong one, and soon the doll Annabelle is free from it’s enclosure, and coming with it are all the evil spirits from beyond that are attached to her like a beacon.
Still, there’s very limited scares here. What scares are in the film are relegated to mild jump scares, or the audience being able to see a demonic spirit over the back shoulder of the characters (unbeknownst to either of the three girls), culminating in a finale which is over with a little bit too fast, with a little bit too little personal sacrifice. In fact, the Annabelle Comes Home actually ends on a really high note, instead of the typical twist ending where something horrifying happens. As such it really is not the scariest of the three Annabelle films at all, and while it IS competently acted and directed, the lack of thrills makes it probably the most boring too.
Rated R for horror violence and terror
-- The Artifact Room & the Occult
-- The Light & the Love
-- Behind the Scenes: The Ferryman/Demon, The Bloody Bride, The Werewolf
I rather enjoyed Annabelle Comes Home, but it obviously is showing the seams and weaknesses of having a film franchise based off of a one off creepy doll shot in another film is wearing thin. The audiences seemed to agree as this was the lowest grossing Annabelle movie yet too. It isn’t that it’s a BAAAAAAAAAD horror movie, it’s just that it’s not the most exciting, bloody, or scary cookie cutter film in the box and that may turn off some audiences. The Blu-ray from Warner is very solid, with modest extras and good technical specs. Solid Enough Rental.
Starring: Patrick Wilson, Vera Farmiga, Mckenna Grace, Samara Lee, Michael Cimino, Katie Sarife, Madison Iseman
Directed by: Gary Dauberman
Written by: Gary Dauberman (Screenplay), James Wan (Story)
Aspect Ratio: 2.39:1 AVC
Audio: English: Dolby Atmos (Dolby TrueHD 7.1 Core), English, Spanish, French, Portuguese DD 5.1
Subtitles: English SDH, French, Portuguese, Spanish
Studio: Warner Brothers
Runtime: 103 minutes
Blu-Ray Release Date: Own Annabelle Comes Home on Blu-ray and DVD on October 8, or Own It Early on Digital on September 17.
Recommendation: Solid Rental