• 22 Sep - 28 Sep, 2018
  • Farheen Jawaid
  • Reviews

The prequel to the delightfully effectively horror Conjuring and Conjuring 2, The Nun does not depend on the creepy buildup of horror like its predecessors. Rather it gets right down to dark corridors, haunted abbeys and the dependable ‘boo’ of jump scares – and they work.

The story starts in 1952 Romania. A folklore keeps the townsfolk away from an abbey situated in an isolated forest. The people are afraid to such a point that they hold fast to superstitious traditions, spitting when the abbey is mentioned to keep the bad mojo away.

The abbey has been in the care of catholic nuns, who live in complete seclusion, devoted in prayers. However the Vatican has to become involved in the abbeys running, because a nun had committed suicide there. So they send a veteran supernatural investigator Father Burke (Demián Bichir) – dubbed the “miracle finder” – and a novice nun Sister Irene (Taissa Farmiga), who has yet to take her final vows.

When they both get to Romania, they are helped by a French-Canadian traveller, Frenchie Theriault (Jonas Bloquet) who has taken residence in nearby town and farms. He is the only one who goes to the abbey to deliver food and goods, and was also the one to have found the body of the nun hanging on the front steps on the abbey.

The Nun uses dark spaces and religious lore to its advantage, it however does not even close to the sheer fright of Annabelle: Creation or The Conjuring. The movie does a serviceable ground-work for the oft-featured Nun from the film series.

There is close to no unseen horror here, which has been a staple of the Conjuring Universe. Director Corin Hardy establishes the premise quickly and moves on to jump scares, with a bit of comedic relief from the Frenchie (who is reminiscent of Brendan Fraser from The Mummy). The entire cast gives solid performances – another staple of The Conjuring franchise. Taissa Farmiga, as the ethereal-looking soon-to-be nun steals the show.

Even when it’s not as scary, nor strongest addition to The Conjuring world, The Nun still stand heads above most of the silly horror fodder of the past few months. •