The horror film “The Conjuring” turned out to be one of the surprise hits of 2013. Movie pundits had not predicted how much current audiences would want to see a well-executed haunted house story without any big name stars in the cast. For those who missed it in theatres, it was recently released on Blu-ray, which is appropriate since Halloween is next week.
The movie is based on an ostensibly true story. It is set in the early 1970s and stars Ron Livingston and Lili Taylor as a married couple with five daughters. They move into a funky old house, and unexpected things start happening. Some of the strange things are harmless, such as when the clocks all stop at the same time. But when their own physical well-being is threatened, they become understandably concerned. They hire a married couple, Ed and Lorraine Warren (played by Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga), to investigate. The Warrens are paranormal investigators who determine that a demon is in the house.
The story of this movie is similar to movies like “Poltergeist” and “The Exorcist.” But it is still a lot of fun to watch because it is very well directed by James Wan. He does a good job showing that the strange occurrences are fairly mild at first, but they become more intense as the story moves on.
The performances are all very strong. The best performance is by Vera Farmiga as Lorraine. She is very dedicated to her job and loves her family.
All in all, "The Conjuring" is a great film. It ranks among the best horror movies of the last several years.