Yup, the long eagerly awaited horror movie from James Wan that got an R-rating from the MPAA for sheer scariness, The Conjuring, will finally be released into theaters this Friday, July 19th (we had to force ourselves not to end that sentence with at least eight exclamation points!!!!!!!!). Every review we’ve read makes us even more impatient and excited to see it. Here’s twenty (it started out as ten quotes, then the piece just …well, took on a life of its own, so to speak) of some of the best, most exciting excerpts/blurbs from various critics lucky enough to have seen it over the last few weeks. Enjoy (and get ready to start jumping
from the top of a wardrobe up and down)! I’ve provided links to the reviews whenever possible.
The Conjuring is probably the best, certainly in a long time. Thoughtful where its competition is glib, featuring substantive and relatable characters, and steadily-paced where most feel lackadaisical, rushed or uneven, Wan has made a truly great movie. And I’m only talking about the parts that I saw from between my fingers. –Todd Gilchrist, The Daily Dead
It’s very difficult to find a modern horror film that doesn’t make viewers laugh at it for even a few minutes, it is the curse of the “we’ve seen it all” audience –but The Conjuring knows you’ve seen it all and still manages to deliver some of the best scares I’ve seen in years. –-Spencer Perry, Shock Till You Drop
The Conjuring is a masterclass in absolute terror that’s destined to become a classic within the genre. There’s no question that for most it will easily be scariest film of the summer… or even the year. The flick showcases the kind of pure, relentless horror that will leave audiences thoroughly creeped out and screaming. –Steve “Uncle Creepy” Barton, Dread Central
It’s not just the “jump scare.” That’s far too simple. As Wan showed in ‘Insidious’ – and does so even more so in his new film, ‘The Conjuring‘ – he is the unrivaled champion of a specific sort of hold-your-breath scene, where you know the jump is just about to happen. But he holds it. And holds it. And holds it just a little bit more. And just when you think it’s a goof or a head-fake, BLAM!, the thing you knew was going to pop out at you, pops out you – and there’s a good chance you just shouted and made a fool of yourself. -Jordan Hoffman, for screencrush.com
Ultimately the sort of relentless, expertly tricked-out scarefest that leaves one feeling happily drained rather than deeply, permanently unsettled, the film nonetheless heightens its impact by playing the material utterly straight where it counts. –Justin Chang, Variety.com
As any horror movie fan will tell you, it’s all about the sound when it comes to frightening the audience. Well, The Conjuring nails it. You have to prepare yourself to live in fear of what is coming while watching the movie, because the sound cues, or the hushed silence of a scene, is going to get you no matter how impenetrable you may think you are to scary movies. —-Kathryn Schroeder, filmfracture.com
…This is something else entirely. For full-on fear and dread, the kind that makes you start squirming at the beginning of the scene, because you know someone’s about to open a door they shouldn’t, this movie starts creepy and maintains a hold on your spine for the next 112 minutes. –Alanso Durande, The Wrap
The Conjuring manages to take what you expect from a film of this style and offer surprise on top of surprise. Instead of going for cheap gags and fake jump scares, the film sets-up and pays off every time with little room for you to prepare yourself for what comes next. Lest you think that The Conjuring will settle for typical “Here’s a scary lady face” or “Listen, a weird noise!” you’ll be in for a rude awakening when its relentless visuals cause you to lose sleep. -Spencer Perry, Shock Till You Drop
If you get seriously freaked out by effective horror movies, I warn you… “The Conjuring” will stick with you. I can’t wait to see it again, and I am excited to see it with a big crowd. I think that shared theatrical experience of being terrified is one of the great thrills of being a film fan, and this should be a great example of that. –-DrewMcWeeny, HitFix
This sort of expert audience manipulation doesn’t come purely from scrimping and saving and working within budgetary constraints that prohibit the filmmakers from showing their monsters. It comes from truly understanding what is scary and how to maximize that suspense, with or without the money to show the monster that will eventually invade viewers’ nightmares. -Todd Gilchrist, The Daily Dead
The question is never what’s behind a particular corner, but the awful worry that something is already beside you; that it (and there are a lot of variations on “it”) can come from all sides. –Samuel Zimmerman, Fangoria.com
…this house has seen many years of strange occurrences, murder and death, curses and witchcraft, and pain. Just when you think you know the one evil presence that is lurking within you discover it’s much more perplexing than you ever expected, and a great deal more fun to watch because of it. —Kathryn Schroeder, filmfracture.com
THE CONJURING not only wants to scare you, but loves to. Even indoors, the film’s action spreads out, soaking every inch of the frame. It’s twice that Wan stages multi-tiered spookshow set pieces, and both are intense, terrifying pieces of work. The entire film is. –Samuel Zimmerman, Fangoria.com
[Wan] springs the surprises within those long shots, timing things so they actually do surprise, often letting the creepy stuff actually creep up — this is the rare horror film where the fear isn’t in what terrible vision the movie might cut to next but in what might reach from the shadows you’re looking at. -Alan Scherstuhl, The Village Voice
Even as Wan employs familiar fright tactics, he brings to the material an evident emphasis on chilling iconography and careful rhythms, as opposed to leaning on money shots and hokey mythology to generate forgettable jolts… even down to its very last shot, “The Conjuring” demonstrates a scary — and welcome — amount of care. —William Goss, film.com
I can’t speak to the film’s accuracy in depicting the events in question, and I generally speaking have no sense of spirituality to bounce off of the events in the film. But there are things in Wan’s film that, for the sake of me sleeping soundly, I’d prefer never to see again. –-Todd Gilchrist, The Daily Dead
There are scary movies, and then there are SCARY movies. The Conjuring fits into the latter category as it will undoubtedly frighten you to the point of laughter, make you squirm in your seat, cover your eyes, and wish you had left the lights on in the house because you will be afraid of the dark when you get home. The Conjuring is the horror movie we dream of, because it’s a hark back to an older style of horror filmmaking, before torture, excessive blood and guts, and the like took over cinema screens, and found-footage too. —Kathryn Schroeder, filmfracture.com
EXTREMELY effective. The Conjuring is home to some of the single most frightening haunted house scares ever committed to film. My biggest fear going in was that some of these moments would come off as goofy or too over-the-top, but Wan manages to clearly ride the line between reality and the absurd as if he were a stone grinding against the blade of a razor. —Steve Barton, Dread Central
…it takes almost no time for “The Conjuring” to immerse the viewer in its spell, as it teases seemingly minor jolts into frissons of terror, and turns a simple game of hide-and-seek into a tour de force of sustained excitement. -Justin Chang, Variety.com
Most thrillers stop being terrifying when their mysteries are revealed, but in the screenplay by Chad Hayes and Carey Hayes, the more we know, the more we dread. As for me, I was screaming. Out loud. Which I generally don’t do in crowded theaters. For a movie like this, that counts as a standing ovation. —Alanso Duralde, thewrap.com
BONUS! Two more great blurbs, added today -both the below are from Rolling Stone magazine’s Peter Travers:
“It scared the living crap out of me”.
“Know this: You’ll scream your head off.”
- Brand NEW ‘The Conjuring’ Featurette – Meet The Real Lorraine Warren (Plus Her Scary, Great Occult Museum)! (horrorboom.com)
- The Conjuring movie review (horrorboom.com)
- Six Chilling New Clips From The Scariest Film of The Summer, The Conjuring! (horrorboom.com)
- The Conjuring and its True Story (horrorboom.com)
Ha! “From the top of a wardrobe” I totally almost spit out my Crystal Light. I’ve been getting really excited for this weekend too! I can’t wait to see how big it was, and I want to see it again! 🙂
Yep! 😀 Trying to get my husband to go Thursday night to a sneak preview. One review I read said Lorraine Warren has a (tiny) cameo – but if so, it must be unbillled –even on IMDB, and they list unbilled, small roles . I’m doing a piece now on ‘trivia about The Conjuring you may not have …(etc.) Did you happen to spot her in the film?
I missed it but another friend went last night and he saw her. Very small… In one of those classroom scenes.