The Nun and all the images you see in this review are owned by Warner Bros Pictures
Directed by Corin Hardy
I wasn’t even planning on seeing this film as my utter apathy to the Conjuring Universe knows no bounds; despite Annabelle: Creation being a pretty solid horror film which I ascribe entirely to roping in a very talented director. Then the weekend came up and there was literally no other movie I was going to see, so this one won by default; take a step forward to volunteer and everyone else took a step back. Does this latest entry in probably my least favorite expanded universe (at least on a conceptual level as The Warrens were in fact a bunch of fraudsters and I HATE that we’re making movies that pretend they weren’t) manage to rise above its lousy origins to give us something entertaining, or will I be forced to be reminded once again why I didn’t like that initial film in the first place? Let’s find out!!
Back in the 1950s, there was a castle in Romania where some spooky stuff was always going on. What kind of spooky stuff? Voices in the hallway, a fake demon nun appearing and disappearing in an instant, and oh yeah, A NUN THROWING HERSELF OUT OF A WINDOW WITH A NOOSE AROUND HER NECK!! Now my first guess it that she did it all for Damian but he wouldn’t be born for another twenty years, and instead it’s probably that demon nun that’s walking around the place. In The Vatican’s effort to be real life Ghostbusters, they send the disgraced Father Burke (Demián Bichir) out to solve this bizarre mystery; like a renegade cop getting his badge and his gun back. He takes along a Soon To Be Sister Irene (Taissa Farmiga) because… I don’t remember; she has psychic powers or something? Anyway, the two of them head to Romania and are led to the castle by the man who discovered the nun’s body, and his name is… wait for it… Frenchie (Jona Bloquet). When this unlikely trio gets there, well you can imagine what happens! Lots of spooky ghost tricks, hidden dark rituals, and a horrifying history that will no doubt ensure at least a dozen more THE CONJURING UNIVERSE films! Can Father Burke and Sorta Sister Irene discover the true reason that the nun threw herself out a window in this dark and spooky castle? When they find what they are looking for, are they prepared to do what is necessary to stop that evil once and for all? Wait, why does a demon have to hide as a nun? It’s not like it does a good job of hiding how obviously evil they are and they can disappear at any time, so why even bother with the costume!?
Allied and all the images you see in this review are owned by Paramount Pictures
Directed by Robert Zemeckis
Oh hey! I remember that guy! Didn’t he do that one movie no one saw last year? Sure, Zemeckis hasn’t had the best track record since Cast Away (mostly due to his obsession with CG animated films for a while there), but The Walk was a pretty solid film that just didn’t get much attention for some reason. Sure, it wasn’t full of explosions or even A list actors (Joseph Gordon Levitt still has a ways to go), but it still a really well made little caper that kept things light and fun. Now it seems that Zemeckis is going in the opposite direction with this sizably budgeted war thriller with two super stars in the cast and a much more intense feel to it. Not to say that any of that is a BAD thing; it’s just interesting that his new film seems to be so diametrically opposed to what he did just last year. Is this movie not only another stellar outing for Zemeckis but the big hit that The Walk just couldn’t manage to be, or will we be wishing to see Philippe Petit walk across another tightrope before this film is over? Let’s find out!!
The movie begins with Canadian Super Spy Max Vatan (Brad Pitt) arriving in Casablanca Morocco to meet up with French Resistance Fighter Marianne Beausejour (Marion Cotillard) to do the one thing you’re supposed to do Casablanca during World War 2; kill some damn Nazis! Say what you will about the greatest generation; at least they knew not to VOTE for them! Of course, during the course of this mission they end up falling in love and Max manages to get Marianne passage to England so that they can get married and he can take a desk job in British Intelligence. Things seem to be going well for some time (they even have a kid together), but then one day some dude who’s like fifty pay grades above Max that they suspect Marianne to be a German Spy. Not only that, but if they find OUT she’s a spy then he’ll have to kill her with his own hands; lest he get charged with treason hang from a noose. Okay… I’m pretty sure that’s still murder even if some dude in the government tells you to do it, but whatever. Needless to say that Max doesn’t buy this for a second and then proceeds to break every rule in the book to try and prove his wife’s innocence despite the evidence this government dude is laying out for him. Will Max find the truth and is it the truth he’s hoping for? Where exactly did the higher ups get all this evidence, and why are they coming to Max like this while they’re still investigating? If she’s REALLY a Nazi what the hell could she POSSIBLY hope to get by going THIS deep under cover for THIS long when she’s hooking up with THIS pencil pusher!?