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REVIEW OF ANNABELLE

year: 2014 rating: **
Two particular things don’t make sense: Calling a girl you think is ugly a dog, when dogs are usually cute… And referring to a precious child as a little doll, when dolls can be horrendously frightening…

Especially in the case of ANNABELLE, a gift given to the lovely Mia by her husband John for… God knows what reason. The doll itself resembles a mad clown donning partial makeup while staring fiercely into the pits of hell… And where else would you put such an antique horror but facing a newborn child’s crib within an otherwise innocent bedroom…

That’s skipping ahead. By the time the couple, via 1969 during the Manson Family cult-killing period, bring new life into the world, Annabelle has already summoned likewise hippie freaks and eventually, The Devil himself rears his formidably horned face, an image way too familiar at this point – a ghost with white sheets would probably be scarier, or at least more mysterious.

A hybrid of ROSEMARY’S BABY, POLTERGEIST, and THE EXORCIST… especially the rip-off conclusion… ANNABELLE has a few worthy jolts: But you can sneak up behind someone in a Disney film and cause the same reaction. The problem are the characters, so uninteresting and paper-thin that the time between spooks is more boring than necessary… And worst yet, the doll doesn’t have enough to do: A conduit into the Netherworld is okay if the vessel is normal to begin with, but with a namesake antagonist so creepy, why invite anyone else to the party?
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