James Wan storms back onto the Horror scene after a short break from the genre to direct the sequel to one of his biggest hits, The Conjuring. After coming back to direct a sequel to his other horror hit Insidious, I was apprehensive about him doing another follow-up to one of my favourite horror movies. The difference in quality between Insidious 2 and The Conjuring 2 are huge. First of all, the huge positive that this film has is that we have recurring main characters from the first film that have more than one story to be told. Ed and Lorraine Warren played by Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga are the catalyst of the films to keep the audience interested about the storyline. It’s easy to not connect to a family that’s being haunted and knowing you won’t see them again after the film finishes. Farmiga and Wilson are brilliant in their return as the Warrens. Hitting and surpassing the chemistry they have in the first film, I felt a deeper connection from the couple than the first film.
Nothing would matter though if the master of horror wasn’t standing behind the camera. Undoubtedly, the best modern horror film maker right now, James Wan continues his traditional style of film making but to my surprise, it’s still hugely effective. When seeing the trailer for The Conjuring 2, I had my reservations. I wasn’t sure if Wan could repeat the magic of the first film and scare me to my bones in his follow up. I thought that his technique would become cliché and predictable but yet again; he keeps surprising and scaring me to death. Possessing a bigger budget than the first film, Wan uses the extra money positively and makes some suitable but not over the top improvements.
I would go as far to say that The Conjuring 2 is probably one of the best horror sequels of all time. I may be tired, but I really cannot think of many great horror sequels in recent times that have come close to the first film. Personally, The Conjuring is one of my favourite horrors of all-time, and the sequel to it has done incredibly well to keep up with the expectations. A very hard film to follow-up on, The Conjuring 2 continues to scare, frighten, jump and creep the shit out of me. The Conjuring 2 is best described as a roller-coaster. At first not much happens and you start to question why it looked so scary in the first place. Then the pace picks up and you gain some height and before you know it, you’re deep into the ride as it flies around the track at unthinkable speeds. That’s exactly how to describe this film. Very slow at the first few moments, but the creepy events unfold very, very quickly.
There aren’t many faults to this film at all. The running time is quite long for a horror movie I have to admit, but its justified by the use of character and story development that becomes incredibly important towards the end. I gave The Conjuring 5 stars back in 2013 when it was released, and the sequel really isn’t that far off. The Conjuring 2 comes in a very close second and just falls short to match the first movie. 4.5 out of 5 stars.