ThatDarnMKS wrote: ↑
Mon Oct 21, 2019 3:15 am
Well, I liked The Nun. Too many jump scares and a loose plot but it's Gothic horror done in the style of Bava and Hammer and that appealed to me greatly. Based on aesthetics, atmosphere and acting, it's among the strongest of the Conjuring universe. I think I just have terrible taste at this point. I'm cool with it but I need to face that I've gone off the deep end.
For the sake of discussion, not just to be an ass, here was my review of The Nun from last year in the theater:
"I don't even know how much time I really wanna waste talking about this movie. It is poor. No question about it, it is a poor movie. And it is a poor movie for two reasons:
1. The script is fucking awful. Just awful. All three of us agreed that if there was a script at all before shooting we'd eat our hats. Maybe there was a story. But there is no way this dialogue was written before shooting began. And really nothing is said or done that isn't there just to drag the story along. The story itself is fine if really basic. Like, if I told you the backstory to the nun was gonna be written and let's just say I gave you the hint that it takes place at the convent... wait, no one even needs THAT hint. It's all just so obvious. Backstory to nun. There's an evil nun. At a convent. Everyone is scared. Intrepid souls attempt to defeat the evil and ultimately succeed... ish (which we know since the nun already appears in a later film). I swear that is really the whole story.
To beat the dead horse of the script a little more, there are major ideas that are introduced but barely explained, there are incredible deus ex machinae, there are hilarious "this guy's never seen a horror movie" character-actions, and then there's just plain hogwash.
2. The direction of the film is just one long series of jump-scare set-ups and executions. Every jump-scare in the book (except for a cat) is used here. The character turns around and "boo!" Nun in the face! The character closes a door and "boo!" The character interacts with a mirror and "boo!" The character just fucking stands there while the camera revolves around and when it comes full circle... "boo!" You could argue that the whole movie is just dressing stretched between jump-scares. And they're executed so similarly that they start to feel telegraphed. At least three times late in the film I noted the mirror as someone walked in and waited for the boo! or caught the camera encircling the character and waited for the boo!
Now here's the thing: I LIKE jump-scares. I do. I think it's very fashionable to criticize their use but they have a purpose and an effect and can be very effective in ratcheting up fear and tension during a movie. When used well. Sparingly. In the right moments. Not when they are the whole movie. And especially not when you know exactly when they're coming.
Ok, positives... the acting is mostly good, considering how poor the script is. There are a lot of moments where people say the most eye-rolly things, but these people are professionals and they're getting paid, and Teissa Farmiga is trying to use this film to build a career, so they're all in on trying to make this awful script tolerable and maybe even fake you out that it's not as bad as it sounds. Yes, Teissa Farmiga, Vera's lil' sis, is here for reasons that are probably obvious the moment you learn that fact, but if not, will be within the first minute or two you see her.
She does a pretty good job, really, her character is what holds the movie up, other than the nun jumping out of damn near everywhere and going "boo!".
Also, the movie is pretty good looking. It retains a lot of the aesthetic from other films in the Wan-verse, while washing out all the colors, which may sound paradoxical, but you'll see what I mean. If you watch this. And there are some decent tricks, one with a shadow jumps to mind (maybe I owe the director some credit for that), couple of other scary moments, the CGI's not bad...
Anyway, I seriously can't believe I spent that much time writing about this."