Annabelle Comes Home [2019] ★★½

It doesn’t reinvent the wheel or move the franchise in totally unexpected ways, but there’s something truly terrifying about “Annabelle Comes Home”. Is it the fact that we’re stuck all night in the Warrens’ house while Annabelle unleashes every demon you could think of? That’s probably it. And for a while, this third installment in the “Annabelle” series will fry your nerves when you least expect it. There are moments of pure silence that are scarier than anything you will see in this trilogy (an ode to the Val Lewton horror movies of the 1940’s? Can’t be just a coincidence). Anyway, I’m drifting. Ed Warren (Patrick Wilson) and his wife Lorraine (Vera Farmiga) are out of town. This leaves their 10-year-old daughter (McKenna Grace) alone with the babysitter (Madison Iseman) and her friend Daniella (Katie Sarife). Can you guess what happens next? In channeling James Wan, writer-director Gary Dauberman creates a tension-filled, atmospheric setting by making his camera do terrifying tricks. The overall results aren’t perfect by any means (especially if you’ve seen over a hundred horror movies before), but “Annabelle Comes Home” does the work by making the Warrens’ house come alive with every undead detail. For fans of the series, that’s job well done.

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