REVIEW - The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It brings the thrills & chills to the 8th chapter in The Conjuring franchise
Once again, Ed and Lorraine Warren are at the center of the story for their third proper installment in the series. The Conjuring: The Devil Made Do It finds the husband and wife in 1981, 10 years after The Conjuring (2013) took place. This time, we are thrown into a case based on the real life saga of Arne Cheyenne Johnson who was the first person in United States court history to claim not guilty by reason of demonic possession. After murdering his landlord, The Warrens vow to get to the bottom of the mysterious circumstances surrounding this otherwise every day man.
The Conjuring franchise has been impressive since its debut 9 years ago. Through 7 films, the horror series has grossed nearly $2 billion dollars and earned favorable reviews from fans and critics around the world. In the 8th chapter in The Conjuring Universe, The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It looks to continue that streak. Here is my review of the latest entry inspired by the Warrens case files.
The Devil Made Me Do It brings the hallmark spooky atmosphere of the first two Conjuring films and sets it in 1981, complete with Blondie's Call Me memorably blasting through the speakers and into our brains. The acting, as it always is with Vera Farmiga and Patrick Wilson, is top notch, lending a serious credence to both the story and the movie itself. Farmiga, in particular, carries the weight of the consequences of The Warrens efforts with a range most often seen in the most well acted drama films. You believe in her. And because you believe in her, you believe in the events taking place before us.
As expected, The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It brings all of the chills and thrills you'd expect in a Conjuring film, wrestling human interest with evil we hope we never have to face. The scares are in full force, whether it is through a chilling soundtrack element, a dark corner of a room or an 'in your face' jump scare. Director Michael Chaves, who directed the 6th Conjuring Universe film, The Curse of La Llorona, brings a moody, almost faded quality to the screen, making the viewer feel as if we truly are in The Warrens Connecticut home in 1981.
At its heart, as the two previous Conjuring proper films before it, The Devil Made Me Do It is a story about love: The Warrens love for each other, their love for their God and their love for their work. This uniquely sets apart the series from any other horror - or horror adjacent - film before it. It's a unique take for a genre that once sent Jason Vorhees to New York City in its 8th installment. But it is that unique take that makes this series so much more appealing then so many other horror movies. You actually care about these characters in a way that doesn't happen all too often in horror. D
With Farmiga and Wilson not even 50 year old and with Conjuring Universe producer James Wan a limitless fountain of terrifying creativity, The Conjuring films could go on for decades to come, just as The Warrens did. Lorraine Warren herself, who was a consultant on the first two Conjuring chapters, passed away at 92 years old in 2019.
The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It is a worthy chapter in the Conjuring series and two steps above most other horror movies. Trust me when I say, go see this in your favorite movie theater when it comes out.