Risen and Revisited: Annabelle (2014)
Hey there, Creepy Peeps! Welcome to another Risen and Revisited review! Today, I went all the way back to my first ever horror movie review on my YouTube channel: Annabelle (John R. Leonetti, 2014)!
So, I gave my original review a watch (see the video below) and I really enjoyed it the first time I saw it. In the video, I talked about the tension built in the film, particularly how the build-up would either lead to a jump scare or fake the viewer out. I also talked about the camera movement and how it seemed like handheld footage.
Now, I’ve seen Annabelle a few times since that first time, and I know what you’re thinking: “Vicky, everyone says that movie sucks, how could you like it?” And for my answer, I’ll quote the wise Eric Cartman in saying: “Whatever! I do what I want!”
I really don’t hate this movie as much as everyone else seems to. I think it’s a competent film, but it needed the most recent installation to make any sense. This most recent viewing of Annabelle was a little different as Annabelle: Creation (David F. Sandberg, 2017) came out this year. If you don’t know: Annabelle is a prequel (of sorts) to The Conjuring (James Wan, 2013) and Annabelle: Creation is a prequel to Annabelle.
There will be spoilers for both Annabelle films ahead. You’ve been warned.
I found I enjoyed the connection that Annabelle creates between The Conjuring and Creation. In Creation, we get the Annabelle dolls origin story and at the end of the film, the demon attached to the doll possesses Annabelle Higgins (Talitha Eliana Bateman). You’ll remember the Higgins’ (Kerry O’Malley and Brian Howe) from Annabelle and how their daughter, Annabelle, murders them in the night before being shot down in John and Mia’s (Ward Horton and Annabelle Wallis) home. At first, when I started seeing trailers for Creation, I thought it was an unneeded prequel because they established Annabelle did some creepy demonic stuff when she died with the doll in her arms. However, now we know that Annabelle was possessed by the demon, so in a Child’s Play sort of way, the demon just passes into the doll when it’s previous host dies. Then the target becomes newborn Leah, my guess anyway, as a new host for the demon.
I also noticed the similarities to Rosemary’s Baby in Annabelle, as well. The similarities are numerous, but the most obvious is that of the hysterical pregnant woman. During her pregnancy and after, Mia must try and convince John that something is after their baby. Of course, John, the sensible doctor-to-be, tries to calm her fears with reason and sense. As it turns out, the only person who really believes Mia is the bookshop owner, Evelyn (Alfre Woodard), who has some experience with losing a child.
I did happen to notice a small plot hole in the beginning of the film. Right after the attack in the nursery, Mia says she wants the doll gone as she remembers Annabelle holding it when she died. John goes and simply throws the doll into their trash can. Couldn’t he have just sold it? I know they try giving it away later and it finds its way back, but that early on? They probably could have rid themselves of the doll sooner.
But then, we wouldn’t have a movie.
Overall, I still enjoy Annabelle, even if everyone else doesn’t. In fact, I think I like it even more now that Creation has come out; it makes more sense within the series now.
Don’t forget to check out my original review of Annabelle in all its cringey, fetus-Vicky glory!
Remember to stay strage, my friends!