Noob Reviews: Annabelle Comes Home
Please be advised that during the review, I have tried to avoid a lot of spoilers. However, there may still be a few included helping explain specific points.
What is Annabelle Comes Home?
Annabelle Comes Home is the third film in the Anabelle series, following on from Annabelle (2014) and Annabelle Creation (2017). A series in which the Warrens (of Conjuring fame) deal with a demonically possessed doll (Annabelle) that is always on the hunt for souls.
Following on from the events of the first film. The Warrens have been able to secure Annabelle from the nurses that she was terrorising. And have her locked away in a blessed cabinet which is meant to hold her evil at bay. Unfortunately for the two, while they are working away from their daughter (Judy), her babysitter (Mary Ellen) and an unexpected guest (Daniela the friend of the babysitter) set her free.
While celebrating her birthday, Mary Ellen and Judy go out on the street to test out a new set of skates that Daniela brings as a birthday gift. While they are out of the house, Daniela, who has recently lost her father, breaks into the Warrens' secure artefact room where Anabelle and various other possessed artefacts are kept. After literally touching or disturbing all of the unique items, she opens the case to Anabelle after the doll ‘falls’ against the case window, wanting to hide the fact she had been in there. Unfortunately, as she is securing Anabelle back into position, Judy and Mary Ellen return. Causing her to leave the room and case unlocked, allowing a not so dormant Anabelle to escape.
Needless to say, once free and with the Warrens away, Annabelle is going to play. Unfortunately, as Daniela disturbed many many other powerful possessed or demonically touched artefacts, Annabelle can call upon 'friends' that also join her in terrorising the three girls. Luckily, their one saving grace is that Judy takes after her mum (Lorraine) and can both see and interact with spirits, allowing her to seek guidance from a deceased priest who she thought had been terrorising her. But who in fact wishes only to help her and her friends survive the ordeal.
Do you have a trailer to show us?
- Official Trailer -
When did it come out?
The film was initially released in cinemas in July 2019. And then was released on DVD in September 2019 and Blu Ray in October 2019.
Who are some of the actors and actresses in the film we might know?
Katie Sarife (Daniela Rios)
Madison Iseman (Mary Ellen)
Mckenna Grace (Judy Warren)
Patrick Wilson (Ed Warren)
Vera Farmiga (Lorraine Warren)
What did you think of Annabelle Comes Home?
Anabelle Comes Home is the latest entry in the Anabelle series and focuses mainly around Judy. The daughter of the Warrens who has also been ‘blessed’ with the gift of her mother. Where she can see and interact with spirits to be able to help lay them to rest. Unfortunately at such a young age and unwilling to tell even her parents what she sees, no one knows of her gift and because of her random outbursts and wishing to keep herself to herself, becomes isolated from the children around her. Daniela’s brother, a school bully, also spreads lies about Judy and her parents, further widening the gap between Judy and others. I thought this part of the story and the initial build-up to the events that see Annabelle been released was really well-paced and handled. However, that is about where my admiration for the film ended.
What could have been an engaging supernatural coming of age was quickly turned into a generic teenage babysitter horror which severely lacked jump scares, tension or any real horror atmosphere. I will admit that Annabelle Creation genuinely scared me at times and had me on the edge of my seat, it gave me chills and kept me hooked. I also thoroughly enjoyed Annabelle, which knew how to ramp up the tension and stress levels. But unfortunately, Anabelle Comes Home fell flat on its face in my opinion and was the weakest of the three films and definitely the weakest of the Conjuring universe entries.
One of the main failings between the first two Annabelle films and Annabelle Comes Home, was that instead of the lack of screen time and the more psychological approach, Annabelle Comes Home puts too many characters on screen early and has many predictable twists. Meaning you can preempt what is going to occur before it occurs and because you see all of the demons and spirits, it takes away the fear of the unknown that the other films thrive off of.
Overall the cinematography is well done, there are bits of really well-scripted story, and the actors do really put their heart and soul into their roles. It is just unfortunate that both the Anabelle series and Conjuring films have raised the bar so high. Even when watching the movie a second time, attempting to review it as a stand-alone horror, it still fell short of what I would say is grade A horror chemistry.
What final rating would you give Annabelle Comes Home?
Having watched the film several times, I would give Annabelle Comes Home 3 out of 5 bananas.
What could have been a fantastic film from an outstanding pedigree of previous films, unfortunately, was lacklustre and a bit of a predictable bore. Although it does have some positives to it, even as a stand-alone horror film the film, unfortunately, fails to deliver on the scares. If you are a fan of the Conjuring universe, give the movie a watch to ensure you are up on the lore side of things as it does fill in some gaps for the wider Conjuring universe. On that note, I do hope that Judy and her parents return in another instalment but return to roots and the producers steer away from the more generic approach they appear to have taken.
Thank you very much for checking out the review and if you are interested in Annabelle Comes Home and would like to check it out for yourself, to form your own opinion, you can check it out here.