Annabelle Comes Home Parent Guide
It feels like this movie is hitting every horror movie checklist which kind of reduces its impact.
Parent Movie Review
Ed and Lorraine Warren (Patrick Wilson and Vera Famiga) are getting burnt out by their attempts to contain the dangers of the occult and decide to take an overnight vacation. Confident that a cursed doll named Annabelle is secure in a box made of sanctified chapel glass in a locked room in their basement, the Warrens leave their daughter Judy (McKenna Grace) home with a babysitter, Mary Ellen (Madison Iseman). But when someone lets Annabelle out, suddenly every other evil artefact the Warrens ever collected springs to demonic life and begins to inflict terror after terror on Judy and Mary Ellen.
This movie suffers from a chronic case of “too many villains”. Annabelle is the primary antagonist, but her abilities are vague: she’s clearly responsible for powering all of the other antagonists, but she seems simply to move inexplicably around the house. Other supernatural baddies have unclear abilities and rules and seem to disappear after being introduced. It makes the movie more confusing and less frightening than it might otherwise have been.
In addition to a surfeit of villains, Annabelle Comes Home also suffers from an overabundance of checklists: it feels like the director is simply checking off a list of horror movie tropes. Characters too stupid to use light switches? Check. Flashlights with dying batteries? Check. Villains who appear in mirrors, only to disappear when observed directly? Check. Asthmatic character, psychic child, broken phones, stupid friend…you name it, Annabelle Comes Home has it. If the film had bothered to work around some of these clichés it might have had a stronger foundation on which to base the horror, but it’s just bland and predictable.
I am actually a bit surprised by the rating for this movie. As far as R rated horror goes, Annabelle Comes Home is comparatively innocuous. There is little direct violence against the characters, and all of the blood and gore is either in photographs or in hallucinations. The language is another concern, but by my recollection, the only character who swears is also the dumbest character in the movie and is responsible for just about every major problem so…I would read that as a cautionary tale.
Annabelle Comes Home is tense and scary, and horror fans will probably have fun, but its fear factor comes from sticking to an old formula and stubbornly refusing to challenge any major tropes of the genre. It’s heavy on the jump scares, and low on thinking. If this is the best Annabelle can conjure up, maybe she should have stayed home in the first place.Directed by Gary Dauberman. Starring Vera Farmiga, Mckenna Grace, and Patrick Wilson.. Running time: 106 minutes. Theatrical release June 26, 2019. Updated July 8, 2019
Annabelle Comes Home
Rating & Content Info
Why is Annabelle Comes Home rated R? Annabelle Comes Home is rated R by the MPAA for horror violence and terror.
Violence: The victim of a car accident is shown with some blood on her face. An individual is shown brandishing a bloody knife. A dead cow is shown with its throat torn out. Another car accident victim is shown with bloody injuries to the face. An individual hallucinates being stabbed in the torso. A number of corpses are shown standing ominously around at various times in the film.
Sexual Content: No sexual activity is seen or discussed. An individual is jokingly referred to as having “balls”, mostly as a joke about being the equipment manager for a sports team.
Profanity: There is one use of extreme profanity and half a dozen moderate profanities.
Alcohol / Drug Use: No drugs or alcohol are seen, used, or discussed.
Page last updated July 8, 2019
Annabelle Comes Home Parents' Guide
Ed and Lorraine Warren have some unusual rules in place to protect everyone in the house. Do you think that if they were more open about the reasons for those rules that people would be more likely to obey them? Or do you think that keeping everything secret would be more effective?
Loved this movie? Try these books…
Older teens interested in hauntings and the paranormal will enjoy Jonathan Stroud’s “Lockwood and Co.” series, which follows a team of grizzled teenage ghostbusters around an alternate version of London.
Related home video titles:
Younger audiences should try Jumanji (1995), another story about dangerous toys. 2006’s Night at the Museum follows an unfortunate night security guard who finds that he may not be protecting the museum from the public – he is protecting the public from the museum.
Viewers looking for family-friendly horror can watch the PG-rated The House with a Clock in its Walls.