By: Lana K. Wilson-Combs
Last week horror film fans were treated to “A Quiet Place II” and now along comes “The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It.” This chilling tale is the eighth film in the “Conjuring” series and is a sequel of sorts to “The Conjuring (2013) and “The Conjuring 2” (2016).
I thought by now, this franchise might be on the verge of petering out, but it seems there’s still plenty of gas left in the tank. Not to mention, a ton of more money to be made. It’s already a multi-billion-dollar series and among the most lucrative horror movie franchises around.
“The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It,” from director Michael Chaves (“The Curse of la Llorona”) and co-producer and screenwriter James Wan (“Saw,” “Annabelle Comes Home” and “Insidious”) packs a frightening punch. The movie is based on the bizarre case involving Arne Cheyenne Johnson played by Ruairi O’ Connor (TV’s “The Spanish Princess”). In 1981, Arne was accused of stabbing his landlord to death. At his murder trial, Arne maintained that the devil made him do it. That was a first and really the only known U.S. murder case where demonic possession was used as a defense.
Apparently, Arne was present during an exorcism of an 11-year-old boy named David Glatzel (Julian Hilliard, TV’s “WandaVision”) who was also the brother of Arne’s girlfriend Debbie Glatzel (Sarah Catherine Hook, TV’s “Triangle”). The exorcism plays out with chilling effect.
Real life Demonologists/paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren played by Patrick Wilson, (“Aquaman 2”) and Vera Farmiga (TV’s “Halston” and “Hawkeye”) attended the exorcism and became a major focus of the Brookfield Demon Murder case as it became known.
Farmiga and Wilson up their game in “Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It” with thoroughly convincing performances. It’s another solid chapter for a spooky series that fortunately for horror fans, hasn’t worn out its welcome.
“The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It” is in theaters on June 4 and on HBO Max.
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Look At This Trailer For "THE CONJURING: THE DEVIL MADE ME DO IT"
Lana K. Wilson-Combs is a member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association (BFCA), The Black Film Critics Circle (BFCC), The American Film Institute (AFI), and a Nominating Committee Voting Member for the NAACP Image Awards.