Still riding off of the success of The Conjuring, the third-Annabelle movie promises absolutely nothing and delivers just that. The Conjuring has had several spin-off movies like Annabelle and The Nun each as bad as the other and adding to that list, Annabelle Comes Home feels like little more than a sheer cash-making scheme.
Ed (Patrick Wilson) and Lorraine Warren (Vera Farmiga) make their first appearance in the Annabelle trilogy after being the central characters in the Conjuring movies. This time they have chosen to take Annabelle home into their basement so they can contain her evil powers. However, when they leave town for the night and babysitter Mary (Madison Iseman) is left in charge of their daughter Judy (Mckenna Grace), Annabelle is set loose to torment the Warren household.
In a year in which an abundance of trash horror has hit the big screen such as The Curse of La Llorona, Escape Room and The Nun, Annabelle Comes Home actually manages to remain considered as sub-par. The movie introduces several new characters to The Conjuring franchise, such as The Ferryman and Black Shuck. However, they are kind of dumped into the story and therefore appear as neither frightening nor particularly important or impactful. The idea of incorporating these monsters inspired from mythology such as Black Shuck who is pulled from South-East English folklore, could have been a cool addition to the story if they had been dealt with at the very least adequately. Instead, we have a ghostly dog and a decrepit man with coins over his eyes seemingly wreaking havoc on Judy, Mary and Daniela (Katie Sarife).
This movie is so lazy in several aspects, the first being its constant use of jump scares. Several scenes are so predictably leading towards a jump scare that it entirely negates its effect. For example, the scene where Mary is being taunted by the Ferryman is so obviously leading towards a jump scare for the best part of three minutes that by the end the will for the jump scare to just occur exceeds the scare that such a scene should create. Its lack of character development is glaringly problematic. Each character has gone through some type of trauma throughout the course of their youth however, none of these traumas are appropriately studied throughout the course of the movie. The plot of this movie could easily be summed up as “a child, a babysitter and her friend run walk around the house finding monsters”. Every somewhat interesting sequence seems to have occurred prior to the events of the movie rendering it lacklustre and unnecessary. The sole positive to be taken from this movie is Mckenna Grace’s performance who following on from her gripping performance in Gifted, is proving to be a seriously good actor child-actor.
All of these abysmal Conjuring spin-off movies do very little other than tarnish the memory of their origin story. Hopefully, this is the last we see of the dreadful doll and she can remain sealed in her showcase for at least the remainder of my lifetime.