Grade: C minus
Shot in France utilizing an actual deserted church, “The Nun II” has its Catholic credentials so as, and as soon as once more offers us a demonic nun bearing a bizarre resemblance to rock star Alice Cooper. The Catholic component is what offers these movies some semblance of verisimilitude.
Written by Ian Goldberg and Richard Naing of “The Autopsy of Jane Doe” and Akela Cooper of “MEGAN” fame, based mostly on characters created by Gary Dauberman (“Annabelle Comes Home”) and the horror and motion movie phenomenon James Wan (“The Conjuring”), “The Nun II” is a sequel to “The Nun” (2018) and the ninth installment in “The Conjuring” universe.
Now, I like nun motion pictures as a lot as anybody (one in all my favorites is Ken Russell’s nonetheless stunning 1971 horrorshow “The Devils”), and I carry a Catholic parochial faculty background to those movies. Like its predecessor, “The Nun II,” which is in essence a remake of the wildly successful (in spite of terrible reviews and audience scores) first film, borrows a lot of plot development and incense-infused iconography from the late William Friedkin’s landmark horror film “The Exorcist” (1973).
This new “Nun” film, directed by Michael Chaves (“The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It”) has nothing to supply besides 1 hour and 50 minutes of bounce cuts (the movie equal of somebody shouting, ”Boo!” in your face) and newly-anointed “Scream Queen” Taissa Farmiga furrowing her forehead whereas decked out because the spiritually highly effective, however in any other case vapid Sister Irene of the primary movie. Also returning is actor Bonnie Aarons, who performed the satanic homeless individual in David Lynch’s “Mulholland Drive” (2001) and originated the position of the demon nun Valak in “The Conjuring 2” (2016).
In this installment Valak has reappeared in rural France in 1956 within the vestry of a church, the place the demon causes a bottle of wine to blow up and water to boil in a stone font after which immolates a priest. Sister Irene has a brand new BFF on this movie. She is Sister Debra (Storm Reid), who’s from Mississippi and was despatched to a convent by her father after the household dwelling was burned down. Sisters Irene and Debra discover themselves in a French city with a boarding faculty, the place Valak seeks one other relic, the gouged out eyes of St. Lucy of Syracuse. Also on the boarding faculty is a hunky gardener named Maurice (tall Belgian Jonas Bloquet of the unique movie), who’s romantically curious about a instructor named Kate (Anna Popplewell, “The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe”). The instructor has a daughter named Sophie (Katelyn Rose Downey) on the faculty. The demonic nun takes a particular curiosity in Sophie, in fact. In one scene, some “mean girls” lure Sophie right into a ruined chapel and lock her in. Someone turns into possessed by Valak, including to the variety of satanic baddies. Girls scream and run. The demonic nun kills some individuals gruesomely (Why?). This occurs. Then, that occurs.
In the movie’s technically greatest scene, Sister Irene encounters a possessed newsstand in a darkish road and pages of a number of magazines start to unfold, flapping maniacally earlier than her, revealing a sure face. In the worst sequence, a personality we barely know is lured into the ruined chapel and killed (Why?). With its Escher-meets-Hogwarts-like stairways, door-pounding demon goat and collapsing flooring and bell tower, “The Nun II” is extra like an amusement park experience you didn’t wish to take than a film. The most scary factor about “The Nun II” is the inevitability of “The Nun III.”
(“The Nun II” incorporates ugly pictures, scary scenes and a demon resembling Alice Cooper)