“The Conjuring” is based on paranormal investigators Lorraine Warren and Ed Warren (played by Vera Farmiga and Patrick Wilson, respectively) who have been called to help a family, the Perrons, who are being haunted in their Rhode Island home.

Before we see the Perrons, we get an extremely creepy sequence of one of Patrick Wilson’s investigations that deal with a doll that a demon has taken over.  It’s a little taste of the frights that the rest of the movie has to offer.

Back to the Perrons.  Headed by Ron Livingston (who plays the father) and Lili Taylor (who plays the mother), mama and papa Perron and their five daughters move to a farmhouse, hoping for a new, good start to their lives.  What they get is a terrifying battle against evil spirits that not only threaten their lives, but could also lead the mother into eternal damnation.  Starting with the family dog who doesn’t want to enter the house, and beds being moved by an invisible force, the terrorizing of the family escalates to the point where Taylor asks Farmiga and Wilson to come to their R.I. home and find out what is happening and how they can stop the hauntings.

From day one of the investigation, Taylor and Livingston are given the bad news: there are multiple spirits in their home, and one is very malevolent; and the really bad spirit has attached itself to the family.  So, even if the family could afford to move out, the spirit would go with them.   Like herpes.  The family doesn’t have much of a choice.  An exorcism is needed, and for that to happen, Farmiga and Wilson have to get proof of the hauntings to take to the Vatican.  And proof they get.  Proof that will get you squeezing your butt cheeks in fear if you watch this movie alone in the dark.

One of my memorable, movie moments of “The Conjuring” is the scene when Farmiga is near a large tree outside the haunted house.  Wilson walks behind her and starts talking, and Farmiga slowly turns around.  She doesn’t look at Wilson, but instead her frightened eyes slowly looks up at the tree; and we see that which only she sees because of her sensitivity to the supernatural forces.

My most memorable, movie moment of “The Conjuring” is the scene when two of the sisters sharing a room in the haunted house are visited by one of the spirits.  The youngest of the two wakes because her bed is moving violently by itself.   Then the door opens, and the youngest stares at the open door, frozen with fright.  She whispers to her older sister — who at this point is now awake — that someone is at the door.  The oldest walks to the door, sees nothing but darkness, then turns around to face her sister and tell her there’s nothing there.  The youngest, now crying because she is so terrified, tells the oldest that it’s right behind her oldest sister!  The oldest slowly turns around, and the door slams shut in the darkness.  Screams are heard from the dark room.

“The Conjuring” is loaded with moments like the two mentioned above.  This is a very well made, very scary movie.  Everyone is on their A-game here, from the actors to the screenwriters to the director.  Horror fans should not miss this gem of a horror movie.

One aspect of this story is that some people can see the ghosts or demons, while most cannot.   Sometimes it’s because a person is more sensitive to the spirit world, or maybe the spirits just want to be seen by certain people.  Take your pick.  But that’s the way things are.  I saw this movie in a house of one of my best friends who lives in Virginia.  People in the house have…seen things.  I’ve visited twice, I haven’t seen s@#t, and that’s the way I like it.  Oh, did I mention that the night before watching “The Conjuring” my friends and I went to a ghost tour?  Yup, once again, I didn’t see anything odd, and I was glad for it; but I took the word of the tour guide that the house and library and school and graveyard are all haunted.  My friend — the one who I was visiting — saw an apparition during the tour.  Her daughter saw it, too.  What they saw would’ve been in my field of vision, but I didn’t see anything.  My friend also was scratched by something at the graveyard part of the tour.  As I said, some people see things, some don’t.  Just because you can’t see something doesn’t mean that nothing’s there.

So…I wasn’t exactly happy when “The Conjuring” mentioned that sometimes spirits attach themselves to people, so that wherever you go, the spirit goes with you.  As far as I can tell, I brought no “souvenirs” from that ghost tour or from the house I was staying in.  Maybe they find me too boring, maybe they don’t like Asians; whatever the case, I’m glad for it.


My friend's cat, Boots.  He looks scary in this pic, but he was just having a bad hair and eyes day.  He's really friendly and cute.

My friend’s cat, Boots. He looks scary in this pic, but he was just having a bad hair and eyes day. He’s really friendly and cute.