Before there was Amityville, there was Harrisville. Based on a true story, THE CONJURING tells the horrifying tale of how world-renowned paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren (featured in last summer’s Fantasia documentary sensation MY AMITYVILLE HORROR) were called upon to help a family terrorized by a dark presence in a secluded farmhouse. Forced to confront a powerful demonic entity, the Warrens find themselves caught in the most petrifying case of their lives. THE CONJURING is chillingly — and convincingly — drawn from the case files of married demonologists Ed and Lorraine Warren. The movie stars Vera Farmiga (Academy Award nominee for UP IN THE AIR and a horror stalwart from ORPHAN, JOSHUA and the cable-TV hit BATES MOTEL) and Patrick Wilson (the INSIDIOUS movies) as the Warrens, and Ron Livingston and Lili Taylor as Roger and Carolyn Perron, residents of the house. Joey King, Shanley Caswell, Haley McFarland, Mackenzie Foy and newcomer Kyla Deaver play the Perrons’ five daughters, and Sterling Jerins is the Warrens’ little girl, Judy.
Australian director Wan proved he had the gruesome goods when he launched the SAW franchise in 2004 and then hit horror paydirt again with the fiendishly scary INSIDIOUS in 2010. With THE CONJURING, Wan again tells a suspenseful, frightening and sympathetic story of a family plagued by diabolical forces. Reuniting with the filmmaker are members of his INSIDIOUS creative team: director of photography John Leonetti, editor Kirk Morri and costume designer Kristin M. Burke, as well as his SAW production designer, Julie Berghoff. The music is composed by Joseph Bishara, another INSIDIOUS vet and fan favorite from his creepy compositions heard in the Mike Mendez films THE CONVENT and THE GRAVEDANCERS. But, of course, it is the Warrens who are the stars of THE CONJURING, true-life ghost and demon busters who have transfixed followers of the paranormal since 1952 and served as the subject of countless articles, books, films and documentaries. If anyone knows about the dangers of the “other side,” it’s the Warrens, and THE CONJURING brings their story to the screen in true goosebumpy glory, courtesy of scaremaster Wan.
— Tony Timpone