Horror

The Nun 2: Mark Kermode’s horror movie review (video format).

Our man of many movies, Mark Kermode, is back to inspect the horror movie The Nun 2. Is it a habit he formed or not? Watch the video above. And our take here at SFcrowsnest Towers? Read on, dear viewer.

Well then, the rumbles from the catacombs of the cinematic world. Warner Bros. invites us once again to partake in another chapter of “The Conjuring” universe, and this time, it’s the return of that habit-wearing horror, “The Nun”. I must admit, when “The Nun” first graced our screens in 2018, its gothic overtures were, indeed, appealing but perhaps more in style than substance. And now, we are presented with “The Nun II”, directed by Michael Chaves and boasting a screenplay with more writers than you can shake an incense thurible at.

The 1956 French setting is immediately promising. It suggests an opportunity for that old-world horror – think waning candles, ancient stone churches, and echoing Gregorian chants. And, of course, our central narrative revolves around our heroine, Sister Irene, reprised by the talented Taissa Farmiga. For those in the cheap seats, yes, she’s once again locking horns with Valak, the demonic nun.

The film is ambitious. There’s a sense of deeper lore, a labyrinth of narrative threads suggesting that evil is pervasive and history is merely its playground. The story of Father Noiret and Jacques sets a sinister tone and Sister Irene’s journey into the depths of Europe’s paranormal disturbances promises thrilling encounters.

However, the plot sometimes threatens to buckle under its own weight. Between boarding schools, the family history of St. Lucy, and a winery turned holy arsenal, there’s a lot to juggle. And one can’t help but feel like, in places, it overindulges.

Where “The Nun II” shines is in its casting. Farmiga holds her own with a blend of vulnerability and resolve. Jonas Bloquet’s Frenchie is a pivotal and complex character, his moments of possession genuinely unnerving. Storm Reid as Sister Debra and Anna Popplewell’s Kate offer strong supporting performances, and Bonnie Aarons, well, she’s as bone-chilling as ever as Valak.

It’s a testament to director Michael Chaves – and indeed, his experience within “The Conjuring” universe – that the film, despite its narrative gymnastics, doesn’t fall apart. The visuals are a treat, with scenes that will surely find themselves in the pantheon of iconic horror moments. But, as I often lament, story is king. And while “The Nun II” has much to commend, it occasionally feels as though it’s trying to tell too many tales in its allotted runtime.

Competing against “My Big Fat Greek Wedding 3” in its release, it’s quite the juxtaposition – one offering laughs and familial chaos, the other, terror from the bowels of the abyss.

In conclusion, “The Nun II” is a gothic horror romp, rich in atmosphere but occasionally lost in its own sprawling tale. Worth a watch? Certainly, especially for fans of the universe. Just don’t expect a masterclass in narrative simplicity. And always, always, beware of nuns with sharp teeth.

ColonelFrog

Colonel Frog is a long time science fiction and fantasy fan. He loves reading novels in the field, and he also enjoys watching movies (as well as reading lots of other genre books).

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