The Conjuring 2

June 16, 2016 - When a demon terrorizes a British mum and her kids, salvation comes from across the pond. Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga reprise their roles as Ed and Lorraine Warren in this sequel to 2013's The Conjuring. Frances O'Connor plays the terrorized mother. Madison Wolfe is her possessed daughter. Franka Potente (Jason Bourne's girlfriend until she got killed) is the academic who thinks they're making it all up.

The year is 1977. The scene is Enfield in North London. Single mum Peggy Hodgson is trying to raise her four kids in a depressingly dank house complete with peeling paint and furniture left behind by the previous owner. Sometime in the fall, middle daughter Janet starts acting strangely and weird things start happening. Soon, a tabloid TV show gets wind of the situation and shows up with a camera crew. They don't know what to make of it. Their only suggestion is to get the church involved. But, the church can't risk its reputation on a possible hoax. So, before exercising any exorcism, it sends the Warrens to make sure the Hodgsons are being troubled by an actual demon.

Fresh off their work on a case known as the Amityville Horror, Ed and Lorraine arrive in London just before Christmas. They have three days to sort out what's going on. It sure seems like there's a demon, but then Janet is caught faking an episode and Lorraine says she can't "feel" anything. The Warrens have nothing left to do but go home - until a startling discovery sends them rushing back to the house with no time to lose.

Overall review: ** Based on how much I liked the first film, I had high hopes for this sequel. Unfortunately, two is not better than one. This one seemed slower and much less scary. One of the reasons, I think, is too much Ed and not enough Lorraine. She stays mostly silent while Ed plays fill-in dad for this family in crisis. On the bright side, Madison Wolfe reminds me of a young Natalie Portman and I look forward to seeing more from her.