‘The Conjuring,’ reviewed by Marshall Fine


The older I get, the less interested I am in horror films, for a couple of reasons.

For one thing, the modern horror film has evolved into a choice between torture porn (violent and grisly for its own sake) and special-effects extravaganzas. Most of the horror I see (or try to avoid seeing) seems too much in love with sadism, instead of tension

While I have little problem giving myself over to a fantasy or sci-fi thriller, I have a hard time buying into the supernatural. Ghosts, demons, the paranormal – sorry but I’ve never been a believer. If something like “The Amityville Horror” happened today, it would be all over the Internet quicker than Justin Bieber’s last bout of public toilet-training. And, just as quickly, it would be debunked. (Yeah, that’s what they want you to think, say the conspiracy theorists.)

So it’s always a pleasant surprise to happen upon a movie that achievers the level of suspense or just plain creepiness that “The Conjuring” manages. It calls to mind films like “The Exorcist,” which understood that the less you saw, the scarier it got.

Based on a true story, the film follows two couples. The first pair is the Perrons (Ron Livingston and Lili Taylor), parents of a brood of kids who move into a huge house in the early 1970s that they bought for a song. That song, I believe, was “Run For Your Life.”

This review continues on my website.

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