The Nun Seals The Deal at The Box Office
September 12, 2018
The Conjuring franchise has become well-known and successful since its launch in 2013 with its namesake title The Conjuring. The original film managed to masterfully set up events for the future of the franchise in a way that viewers can only really appreciate in retrospect.
The stories are crafted in such a way that tells the viewer exactly what’s happening and what to expect in a subtle way that usually is only noticeable upon a second viewing.
Although I could talk about the complexity of The Conjuring franchise for hours, the real reason we’re here is to discuss the newest addition to the saga: The Nun.
Back in 2016, The Conjuring 2 arrived in theaters, providing fans with another helping of their favorite paranormal hunting duo, Ed and Lorraine Warren (played by Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga), who were continuing on their quest to help yet another family rid themselves of a haunting.
However, the story in The Conjuring 2 had much more to it than it initially appeared. A new evil was introduced, namely, a demonic nun that haunts Lorraine, showing her a vision of Ed’s death. The creature stalks the shadows of the film, only to reveal the true importance of the character in the final act, where the demon is banished once and for all.
Some viewers of that film found having a seemingly minor character become vastly more important in the final act to be rather jarring and perplexing. But it turns out there was much more to this nun than there seemed.
So how does this current addition to The Conjuring canon tie things together? Specifically, The Nun manages to bring the chapter to a close, finishing the remaining unanswered questions left behind from the previous films.
As usual with this series, the story seems fairly simple (at first). Set in 1952 in Romania, there is an abbey for a cloister of nuns. An ancient evil lives in this previously holy place, which has been uncovered after a villager, “Frenchie” (played by Jonas Bloquet), discovers the body of a nun hanging from the abbey while on a delivery run. The Vatican sends Father Burke (played by Demian Bichir) to enlist nun-in-training Sister Irene (played by Taissa Farmiga) to investigate the abbey, and make sure the cloister isn’t negatively impacted by this death. The team slowly unravels the mystery of the abbey, and the demon who haunts it, coming to the conclusion that the only way to save the abbey is to defeat the demon.
Acting-wise, I was pleasantly surprised by this movie. Of course, I knew that Taissa Farmiga would be a perfect fit, having recently seen her in the role of Violet Harmon in American Horror Story, which I just started watching, (yes I know I’m very late to that series.) Farmiga stars in the role of Sister Irene, and manages to carry the movie with stunning charm and personality. I had yet to see Demian Bichir in any movie, and was extremely impressed with his performance as a powerful figure with a commanding voice and important presence. Meanwhile, Bloquet’s Frenchie provides a much-needed comic relief that isn’t too overpowering.
My only issue with The Nun is that it veers away from its horror movie roots near the end. The finale, without spoiling anything, feels more like an action film than the culmination to a horrific event. This wasn’t a major deal breaker for me. I was disappointed that when the team began gearing up to fight back, the scares disappeared.
Speaking of scares, this film is packed with them. “Well, no duh, it’s a horror movie,” you’re probably thinking. But as an avid horror movie fan, I can tell you that there are some pretty solid scares in The Nun.
The Nun brings the previous chapter of The Conjuring franchise to a close, answering questions that fans have been asking since the original film. I can’t give away what exactly these revelations are, so you’ll have to see it on your own to find out. If you’re a fan of The Conjuring, Annabelle, or even just horror movies in general, I’d highly recommend checking out The Nun.
I give The Nun a solid 8 faulty candles out of 10, and can’t wait to see the next edition to one of my favorite horror franchises.