Annabelle Comes Home is the third installment of the franchise focusing on the evil doll and it is due to be released on the 26th of this month. This is one of many movies that take place in The Conjuring universe, and just like the rest of them it has been getting a lot of attention in the lead up to its release. Now, early critic reviews are in and they aren’t too bad.
In Annabelle Comes Home Ed and Lorraine Warren, the demonologists that The Conjuring movies focus on, bring the doll to their artifacts room so that she can no longer cause trouble. They place her behind sacred glass and enlist a priest’s holy blessing. This doesn’t work as planned and Annabelle wakes up the evil spirits of the room and they set their focus on the Warren’s ten-year-old daughter, Judy.
At the time of writing Annabelle Comes Home had a 63% score on Rotten Tomatoes. Here’s what critics had to say about the movie:
- Observer: “While Dauberman is still figuring out how to effectively build suspense (Daniela’s various forays into the Artifact Room seem to take as long as visits to the DMV), he does a good job of varying the types of scares he uses to shock his audience. He also leavens the tension with just the right amount of humor and does well with his recreation of the ’70s.”
- Washington Post: “The movie is scary, to be sure, but it’s also larky good fun.”
- The Gate: “Annabelle Comes Home feels a lot more in line with The Conjuring films than the rest of its spin-off brethren; not because it’s terrifying, but because it’s a story that actually wants to be about something rather than just another cynical bridge to future installments.”
- Daily Dead: “Dauberman should be really proud of what he’s achieved with his first time at bat as a director, though, as it feels like he’s crafted something very special and made a filmic treat for those of us who have been following The Conjuring films from the very beginning.”
- The Mary Sue: “If the formula isn’t broken, don’t fix it. We all need popcorn horror fare, and the Conjuring franchise, and Annabelle, know how to deliver.”
- Deadline: “If you were on board for the first two installments of the Annabelle (so far) trilogy, you will probably be on board this one as well which does a serviceable job keeping this doll in business.”
- The Wrap: “But when it comes down to it, you can’t have a strong horror movie without a strong villain. Given that Chucky is currently working overtime to torment an entire community, surely Annabelle can do more than offer up a couple of creepy grins before calling it a day.”
- Entertainment Weekly: “Annabelle Comes Home is only a little scary, and too religiously dedicated to its own ongoing cash-printing megafranchise for big laughs.”
- Den of Geek: “Once a breath of wicked fresh air from James Wan, his throwback to ‘70s dread (and dubious “true story” claims) has birthed a decidedly modern understanding of a “shared universe.” And as creepy as his two macabre Conjuring movies were, in that haunted house theme park kind of way, the spinoffs from Annabelle to The Nun have felt closer to country carnival knockoffs.”
- Movie Web: “Annabelle Comes Home is a brainless sequel that telegraphs every scare. The seventh installment in The Conjuring Universe and third Annabelle film had me laughing out loud for the wrong reasons. Annabelle franchise writer Gary Dauberman steps behind the camera for his feature directorial debut. He delivers a formulaic plot with cookie cutter characters. Annabelle Comes Homeis a lame rehash of tired horror movie tropes. Lower your expectations to the basement, where a third of the film takes place.”
- New York Times: “Annabelle Comes Home, the latest in the demon-doll saga that began in 2013, is no more than a shameless franchise-stuffer. Burdened neither by fresh ideas nor common sense, Gary Dauberman’s lethargic screenplay (he also directed, an inauspicious debut) takes so long to get moving that Annabelle herself should demand a do-over.”
Reviews at this point are pretty torn and although the are mostly (only just) positive, it doesn’t seem like Annabelle Comes Home can stand its ground as a horror movie in its own right. It certainly seems like an entertaining and fun watch, but seasoned horror fans want more than tired tropes and jump scares.
Are you looking forward to Annabelle Comes Home? Let us know in the comments!