Director James Wan returns from helming the Fast & Furious franchise to deliver the latest installment in his series of films about paranormal investigators (the Insidious films were basically the same thing, only without the “based on a true story” hook).
Here the true story is a haunted house in the UK suburb of Enfield in the late ’70s, and once again Ed (Patrick Wilson) and Lorraine (Vera Farmiga) Warren are called in. Not for a while though – for almost half the film they’re busy being freaked out back in the USA by a ghostly evil nun, while Peggy Hodgson (Frances O’Connor) and her kids are being abused by what seems to be the ghost of a grumpy old man in the UK.
At over two hours this isn’t a fast-paced thrill-ride and parts do drag, but Wan has his horror skills down pat and this is packed with genuinely creepy moments. There’s the occasional reference to people’s suspicions that the whole thing was a hoax (the Warrens were somewhat dodgy in real life), but the point here isn’t finding the truth but scaring the crap out of you – and in that this often chilling film hits much more than it misses.
Reviewed by Anthony Morris