The Nun

**In this post, I discuss thoughts about The Nun movie, there are spoilers for the movie and The Conjuring Series.**

A spin-off movie from The Conjuring Universe, the story follows a priest and a nun in training sent by the Vatican as they investigate the death of a nun found hanging herself in a Romania Monastery.  Even with the help of their guide Frenchie, they discover an evil that may be more than the two can handle.

I have seen The Conjuring movies, but not any of The Annabelle movies in terms of this “Cinematic Universe.”  Which is excellent for this film.  I didn’t have to know anything about Annabelle to understand the events and characters of this movie. The entity or demon shown in The Conjuring film was the antagonist in this movie. Of course, there is someone who might have no idea that this is set within The Conjuring universe, and the film could have stood on its own. The movie still included the Warrens, the main characters from The Conjuring film at the start and end of the movie to tie them together.

You can find Valak’s name in the first 30 minutes or so in The Conjuring 2. It’s about as subtle to me as someone who made a puzzle screaming “the answer is right here” before you start.

I am someone who with either loves or hates a horror movie.  I rarely get any middle ground in the genre.  My least favorite in the sub-genre horror is “slasher movies.”  I’m more of a supernatural or science fiction fan of horror.  Not to say that I don’t like a slasher movie now and then, as Halloween, (the 1978 Movie) is one of my favorite movies of all time.

I thought the movie was OK.  The scares relied on jump scares, and the movie got me one time.  I was hoping that the film would have had a more supernatural element of horror in terms of scares.  Not the type that makes the viewer say don’t go into the spooky area, look behind you an evil entity or don’t follow the unknown figure.  There were times where I thought that the movie was going to get better.  In the end, for example, the main characters looked like they were going to die but defeat Valak, which could have made this film better, giving it a heroes sacrifice story.  I felt I hardly knew anything about the main characters anyway and would have made this film and story, more interesting. But the heroes lived through the ordeal, probably to do more sequels as this movie did gross $53 million in the US on opening weekend.

The Hollywood Reporter's Annual Women In Entertainment Breakfast In Los Angeles
Tessa Farmiga (left) plays Sister Irene.  Her other sister Vera Farmiga plays Lorraine Warren (right) in The Conjouring movie series.  They tried to avoid casting them together in this movie series, but I liked the casting choice and connection.

The cast was fine for the roles that they had.  There weren’t too many characters as the film seem to focus on Father Gabriel, Sister Irene, and Frenchie their guide in the movie.  There were some minor characters I noticed that did help support the story slightly.  But it also moved the story into some predictable territory with the back story and fates of the minor characters sort of obvious.  Father Burke, Sister Irene, and Frenchie are alright.  Not memorable or great characters just there for the sake of telling the story.

For taking place in the 1950s the start of the movie felt very modern to me.  It didn’t seem like the area was the 1950’s but the 2010’s at least in the opening when Father Burke went to the Vatican.  It slipped my mind for a moment that it takes place before The Conjuring.  It did help that most of the film was moved to the Monastery, which brought the film back to the correct time for me.  I liked the look of the decayed Monastery and the dark openness that the scenery seemed to have.  It did keep a mysterious element to the movie.  Where everything seemed dead or have a deathly presence, yet seemingly well and alive nuns take care and watch over a desolate place.  It provided more of a mysterious element and a question to the view of how and why anyone was able to survive and stay in an area such as this.

(GIF from From the Conjuring 2) One thing The Conjuring/The Nun does frequently in their movies is turning crosses upside down.  It ruins and tones down the scare to follow I feel because you are now expecting something to happen when you see it.

The villain, Valak, was introduced to me in The Conjuring 2.  I saw Conjuring 2 before the first movie if you are all wondering.  It was the evil entity of the movie and the series.  Despite the origins being described as a Duke who wanted to unleash evil almost getting out, no real back story that I saw, it was just evil for the sake of spreading darkness.  Although the look it’s very good at creeping me out, especially those yellow eyes.

I’ll give the film this.  Valak’s look is really, really creepy.

I can’t help but feel that the story had actions in the movie had escalated too quickly at times.  Resulting in a very fast climax in some scenes.  Like when Father Burke got buried alive in a matter of an instant.  Even the scene of Sister Irene praying with the nuns and her visions of Valak seem to be rushed to me.  The film had misplaced exposition that should have been revealed after the fact and not before.  One example I refer to is when Father Burke and Sister Irene talk about the visions that they are having about halfway through the movie.  Father Burke reveals that he failed to exorcise a boy and greaves over his failure.  After that he has several encounters with this boy, which were visions from Valak and Father Burke’s grief.  Father Burke’s exposition could have been told in the middle of Father Burke story, as I could have been more invested  if I saw the boy first before Father Burke told us his story.

How they defeated Valak and sealed the portal, gave me more plot hole questions than answers that it provided.  Valak was defeated by the actual Blood of Christ.  Why was something so scared holy and rare, not kept at the Vatican.  Something that holy should have been left there and given to the Father.  Instead it’s an in case in emergency situation saying, “In Case of Demonic Entity escaping, follow Virgin Mary’s pointing finger and use sparingly”.  They waste all of Christ’s blood in the end, but play fairly confident that the seal won’t open again.  Despite that bombing runs in World War 2 reopened the seal again in the first place.  It’s not like Christ is available to provide more blood.  Valak still gets out through the wound Frenchie got in the battle.   Was that just to tie it in to The Conjuring as well?  Those were just some of the main questions that I had about the movie.

What is your most/least favorite movie in The Conjuring Universe?  Thanks for reading and if I missed anything or if you have a question, let me know in the comments.

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