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The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It (NC16)

Starring Patrick Wilson, Vera Farmiga, Ruairi O’Connor

Directed by Michael Chaves

​​​​​​​In the third (3.5, if you count spin-off Annabelle Comes Home) Conjuring instalment based on the real-life cases of husband-and-wife paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren (Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga, terrific), the couple lend their expertise to help a young man charged with murder, which he claimed was committed under the influence of the devil. Was he really possessed? Or was it totally something else? Whatever it is, can it be proven in a court of law? “The court accepts the existence of God every time a witness swears to tell the truth,” says a steely Ed Warren in one scene. “I think it’s about time they accept the existence of the devil.” This chapter — with Michael Chaves (The Curse of La Llorona, once hyped as the extension of the Conjuring-verse but not anymore) taking over directing duties from original helmer and franchise architect James Wan — steers away from the haunted-house formula and weaves in a refreshing detective element into the familiar spooky proceedings. It’s scary at parts (notably the opening exorcism sequence) but dials down on the oozing dread and nerve-wracking tension of its predecessors. The fright quality might have dipped but at least the Warrens’ continuing love story will still warm the cockles of your heart. (2.5/5 stars) 

Photo: Warner Bros Pictures

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