Annabelle Comes Home: The Conjuring universe continues to thrill

Annabelle Comes Home movie photo via Warner Bros. Media Pass
Annabelle Comes Home movie photo via Warner Bros. Media Pass /

The Conjuring opened the door to many demons, which in Hollywood means spin-offs and sequels, one of the most popular being Annabelle. But does Annabelle Comes Home feel tired or does the horror universe continue to thrill?

Annabelle Comes Home opens in theaters June 26, with early screenings beginning as early as the evening of June 25, will you be watching? It’s the latest movie in the Conjuring‘s growing universe and the third in the Annabelle series.

The doll was in full focus in 2014’s Annabelle. In 2017, Annabelle: Creation dug deeper into the history of it. But as creepy looking as the doll is, what makes Annabelle so frightening is what she is able to do, and that’s what we see in Annabelle Comes Home. 

In the latest chapter, audiences see the doll’s sinister abilities fully unleashed — as well as many other objects the Warren’s have in their home. Annabelle Comes Home kicks off with Ed and Lorraine Warren (Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga) bringing the doll into their home and sealing it in a blessed glass case. They can’t stay home for long, though, as another assignment calls them out of town.

Ed and Lorraine get their trusted babysitter, Mary Ellen (Madison Iseman) to stay with their daughter Judy (Mckenna Grace) while they’re away. Mary Ellen’s friend, Daniela (Katie Sarife) is immediately intrigued by the Warren’s career and asks Mary Ellen if she can snoop around the house. Mary Ellen tells her no, but Daniela does so anyway.

Don’t judge the girl too harshly, Daniela recently suffered a loss and only wishes to find a way to connect to a loved one. Still, you’d think the many warning signs would stop Daniela from entering a room that’s heavily locked up.

Once Judy realizes what Daniela has done, she demands to know which item Daniela touched. To everyone’s horror, Daniela replies that she touched all of them.

Annabelle Comes Home
Annabelle Comes Home movie photo via Warner Bros. Media Pass /

With no way to reach the Warren’s, who return in the morning, the three young women try to fight the spirits off until they can find a way to seal Annabelle as she is the one ruling over all.

What should feel tired after so many movies and Annabelle’s third, feels refreshing and new. Annabelle Comes Home is the most heartfelt in the franchise thanks to Daniela’s story, and it also packs many laughs and chuckles due to a fun cast.

Gary Dauberman has scripted all three Annabelle movies (as well as The Nun), but Comes Home is his directorial debut. And though audiences usually complain about jump scares, I feel Comes Home could have used a few more. But once you see it, you’ll understand why Dauberman skipped the cheap thrills.

Dauberman is playing the slow game here, building up the characters — Daniela’s story, Judy’s fears — all for a rewarding horror experience during the final moments.

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Annabelle Comes Home movie photo via Warner Bros. Media Pass
Annabelle Comes Home movie photo via Warner Bros. Media Pass /

Next. 10 TV shows and movies to watch on Netflix in June. dark

What’s next in the Conjuring universe? There doesn’t seem to be another movie based on Annabelle in the works, but expect The Conjuring 3 in 2020, and two other movies with no release dates are The Crooked Man and an untitled The Nun sequel. Which are you most excited to see?

Annabelle Comes Home begins showing in select theaters tonight, Tuesday, June 25, opening wide tomorrow, Wednesday, June 26.