Director: David F. Sandberg
Writers: Gary Dauberman, Gary Dauberman (based on characters created by)
Stars: Anthony LaPaglia, Samara Lee, Miranda Otto
Plot: 12 years after the tragic death of their little girl, a dollmaker and his wife welcome a nun and several girls from a shuttered orphanage into their home, where they soon become the target of the dollmaker’s possessed creation, Annabelle.
Running Time: 1 hour 49 Minutes
Rotten Tomatoes Score: Critics 69% Audience 68%
Why I watched it: Mostly because of the good reviews, and the trailer looked decent.
Thoughts: I usually hate prequel, for the most part they’re a lazy cash grab and coming off the first Annabelle, which was so badly done I couldn’t get through it. I do think that this film is a textbook case of if you put some effort and some thought into a horror movie even if it’s a prequel you can make a decent film.
What I liked: First off this is a well made horror film, effort has been put into this, it’s shot well the sound is great and it looks good, it doesn’t look cheap. Horror shouldn’t mean cliched and cheap looking. This is a very well thought out origin story. I would think we’ll here some big things from director David F Sandberg and I hope he stays in genre film making cause he understands the genre. This film is a lot better than it deserves to be, the cast is very good for this kind of film no one phones it in and the performances aren’t campy or over the top this is a tightly acted and filmed horror film. I really liked the fact that they put some thought into the story that they just didn’t throw a bunch of cliches at us, I was surprised at the plot, it’s well thought out and very sad, Lapaglia and Otto don’t have a lot to do but they class up the film a lot and they flesh out stock characters.
I saw Angel Of Death 2, which as a very similar plot with orphans in a spooky house, now where that was boring and dull this film made me jump and has real stakes. Director Sandberg shot the crap out of that huge house and yes he even made it a “character” I also think they really saved the whole Annabelle thing, cause the first movie was so bad it was laughable but they give it dread and they give it this evil air about it that the doll is scary again.
What I didn’t like: Here’s my old complaint, at close to 2 hours it’s a bit long, it does drag a bit and they loose some momentum. Of course the use of jump scares is tiresome but I will say a couple work. They have 6 orphan girls all various ages and they really only give two anything to do, the other ones weren’t even characters, they were just there. I do wish they gave the adult leads more time as I liked them, I almost wished they were the leads.
Final Thoughts: Not a great movie but a solid horror film, this shows horror can be well done even though it doesn’t have a huge budget or names, just sound film making.