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Scare off 2018 with a viewing of ‘The Nun’

The most recent addition to "The Conjuring" series is out on DVD on Dec. 4.

Maya DeWakar, Contributor

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Review LogoThe eerie vibe you feel when you begin watching “The Nun,” Corin Hardy’s most recent film in “The Conjuring” series, does not leave you even long after the movie is over.

The film follows Father Burke, Sister Irene and a town local named Frenchie who are sent by the Vatican to explore an almost abandoned convent that is said to be haunted.

The movie not only does a great job of tying in the past films, but also gives you that good scare you want to have when going to see a horror film, like when the terrifying demon Valek sneaks up on you from nowhere.

The movie is set in 1950s Romania, where the main characters are sent to go investigate the unexpected suicide of one of the nuns who once lived at the convent.

Father Burke, a confident holy man, brings along an inexperienced nun who still has not taken her vows. Once they travel to the town of Bucharest, they meet a local from France, Frenchie, who accompanies them on their quest. Frenchie and Sister Irene don’t quite know what they’re in for, until the evil spirit cursing the convent makes itself know in terrifying ways such as burying people alive.

The use of a gray, misty setting where the convent is located leaves you with an unsettling feeling about what is to come. From seeing blood on the front steps that multiplies by the day, to nuns hiding in the shadows of the night, you know there is something terrible that possesses this area.

The dark hallways and upside-down crosses add another element of the lack of holiness that hexes the abandoned church. Another element of the film that is executed fantastically is the sound and music. The producers of “Annabelle” and now “The Nun” really know how to make a scene 100 times more suspenseful by using violent sound effects like the chilling scenes inside the convent.

The film’s actors were especially cast well. Father Burke, played by Demian Bichir, has a troubled, secret past. Birchir does well at acting like he knows what he is doing, until he doesn’t.

Sister Irene, a young nun who has not fully committed to the holy life because she has not yet said her vows, is played by the incredible Taissa Farminga. Her character has a gift of visions that she has had since she was a child, and was chosen by fate to accompany Father Burke on his mission. Her gift in the movie ends up being a curse and a blessing all at once.  

The loveable Frenchie is played by Jonas Bloquet. His fearlessness and worldly character plays a vital role in not only this film, but “The Conjuring” as well.

Valek, played by Bonnie Aarons, returns to frighten you once again with the spine-chilling costume and makeup designed by Sharon Gilham.

Cinematographer Maxime Alexandre takes you on an adventure with his shifting visual manipulations. The techniques used in this moving constantly give you the sneaking suspicion that you’re not where you’re supposed to be. Pan shots give you that disorienting back-and-forth feeling.

If you’d like to give yourself a good scare, “The Nun” is a must-see for recent DVD releases, or to view on streaming services. From casting, to scenery, to perfectly executed acting, this film is very well done in all aspects.

This review was created as an Honors Contract project between professor Roman Koenig and students in the Introduction to Cinema (RTVF 160) course. The project enhances a course through honors-level objectives and tasks that are in addition to those of the regular class, and successful completion of this project is noted on the student’s official transcript. Almost all 16-week, face-to-face courses at San Diego City College can be converted to Honors with an Honors Contract. For more information, visit http://sdcity.edu/AcademicPrograms/HonorsProgram/.

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Scare off 2018 with a viewing of ‘The Nun’