Annabelle is a prequel to The Conjuring, the terrifying movie where we first saw a glimpse of the doll and her story. Annabelle is set a few years before The Conjuring and it gives us the origin of the doll. We have Mia played by (incidentally) Annabelle Wallis, and John, played by Ward Horton, who are the protagonists of the movie. Mia has a collection of dolls and John surprises her with a doll that she has been looking for to complete her collection. They are expecting their first child, a girl named Leah, while they house the doll in her nursery. John and Mia live next to the Higgins, whose daughter ran off and joined a Satanic cult, a la Charles Manson.
Annabelle is the Higgins’ daughter. The Satanic cult she is a part of conjured up a demon, and now they need a soul to make things official and give it the power it needs. Annabelle returns to her house and with the help of her boyfriend murders her parents. Mia hears a scream and wakes up John, thinking the Higgins’ are in trouble. They head over next door, where John discovers the bodies and tells Mia to call for help.
Once Mia is back inside her home, Annabelle and her boyfriend attack her. In a struggle between John, the cops, and the boyfriend, Annabelle commits suicide holding the doll in the nursery and her blood drips down into the doll’s eye. The doll and Annabelle are now connected. John gets rid of the doll before they move to a new place but somehow the doll ends up in one of the boxes. Mia gives the doll a second chance; after all, she had been looking to complete her doll collection for a long time now. Things start happening in the new place and Mia is now the target of Annabelle. She wants her soul.
The movie definitely shocks you, and you find yourself screaming out loud and possibly reaching out to hold your significant other’s forearm. You keep asking yourself why anyone would want such an ugly doll to begin with. Well, the real Annabelle doll is a Raggedy-Ann look alike, so why wouldn’t you give such an innocent- looking doll another chance? The demon is freaky, to say the least. Definitely scarier than the doll. The movie would have been better if there was more of the demon, but the scenes where we see him surely make you squirm in your seat. Mia took too long to beat up the doll, and John should have seen the demon as well. Leah is super adorable, but it was really strange that she was so happy and giggly the whole movie. Why is that baby so happy while a demon is stalking her and her mom? The cinematography was great and the sound editing definitely gives you that jittery, panicky feeling. Starting off October and the Halloween season, I would definitely recommend watching Annabelle. This weekend’s box office numbers don’t lie.
Movie runs 98 minutes. Directed by John R. Leonetti.