What if the Warren couples (Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga retain their roles) face up to and deal with an entirely new case of paranormal investigation involving a family that comprises a single mother – Peggy Hodgson (Frances O’Connor) and her four children – Margaret, Janet, Johnny and Billy which has been mentally afflicted by cacodemons? The answer is an on-screen battle where the Warrens defeat the Fiends via evangelical means.
As the pattern of execution of Conjuring and Conjuring 2 is fairly same, it is unavoidable to stop comparing both. Conjuring 2 has leveraged the visual effects front relatively more than that of Conjuring. Notable contribution from the arena of VFX in this movie has been the manner in which the ‘Crooked Man’ has been showcased and a hair-raising scene featuring hellhound. Along the lines of the usage of a wardrobe and music toy in the first instalment of Conjuring, a tent within the house and a music box have been optimized in the second instalment.
One among the aspect that sets apart Conjuring 2 from its previous chapter is the extended portrayal of the love that prevails between Ed and Lorrain Warren. In the second episode, an intense revelation of the mutual affection between the couple has been exhibited for which a premonition that Lorrain senses has been manifested. In both the movies, James Wan has sketched the demons in a weird and a unique manner. In order to keep the curiosity intact, glimpses of the demons have been depicted in the initial portions of the movie and the complete demeanour of the evil spirits have been revealed towards the climax. Irrespective of the two chapters, the actors have ably supported the well-written scripts.
In the initial portions of the movie, narration has been executed in two different tracks in which one comprises the day-to-day happenings of the Peggy Hodgson’s family and the other involves the proceedings in the life of Ed and Lorrain. As the movie progresses, the execution of the two narrations have converged and advanced towards the climax where the solutions for all the anxiety generating knot have been untied. Ingenious sound design deserves a special mention. A dead silence has been utilized prior to some satanic sequences followed by a jump scare which as a whole could well be defined as blood-curdling moments. Don Burgess’s camera angles such as the shot that features a water droplet from the tap in the kitchen and the capture of the main hall of the house after everyone has gone for sleep sets up the mood to welcome some on-screen devilish happenings. The concept of teleportation of Janet (Madison Wolfe), that takes place within Hodgson’s house, has been skilfully executed. In the climax, Kirk M.Morri’s editing and Don’s cinematography have worked hand-in-glove and have conveyed the difficult situation that Ed Warren and Janet face in the sequence.
Jump scare which has been a quintessential part of most of the horror flicks finds its place in Conjuring 2 as well. One of the conventional approaches in the horror movies is that the person who first gets traumatized by the ghost gets the “Barmy” tag imposed on him/her by his/her co-characters. Victim of such a common practice, in Conjuring 2, is Janet. Also, a dark mark can be perceived around the eyes of the person who is in trance. Deployment of the banalities does not end here. Shaking the beds, hurling the furniture, pounding at and banging the doors have also been utilised here and there. In spite of the presence of all these clichés in various portions of the movie, the presentation of James Wan is intriguing.
With two movies in the kitty of the Conjuring franchise, it is now evident that the boundaries of the movies of this franchise are not confined to horror alone. It is outstretched to the likes of horror, comedy, love between a couple and familial bonding. So, the expectations on the upcoming derivatives will vested upon all the above mentioned factors.