The Nun II Review

The Nun II
The Nun II
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Conjuringverse does not have phases, does not have chapters and, at least till now, we have been saved from seeing Ed and Lorraine Warren come out of a portal together with Father Merrin and Tangina Barrons ready to pray Lucifer out of existence. What it has is patience – something that horror fans who love James Wan’s haunted house have seen in the various spin offs and sequels spanning over years. That is why The Nun II, don’t forget this is a prequel to a sequel to a sequel, turns out to be quite an enjoyable exercise for the film series. It saves what was great about The Nun while fixing anything that was wrong with it by subjecting its affable protagonists to an array of novel tortures meant to remind us all that as the Conjuringverse prepares for its 10th anniversary, there are still many scares yet.

The Nun 2 is different from other Annabelle films in that each of them is set around one family but instead brings back Sister Irene (Taissa Farmiga) and Frenchie (Jonas Bloquet) for another clash against Valak the demon nun. This move mostly pays off – throughout The Nun Irene along with Frenchie had an excellent screwball chemistry which developed into mutual respect thus focusing on these individuals here enhances concentration on characterization. However, it is disappointing since they are apart most of the time throughout the movie. After several violent deaths occur in various Catholic churches all over Europe; Sister Irene goes for an investigation when she arrives there. Now you must remember where Valak hitched a ride away from St Carta Abbey hidden in Frenchie’s soul so…well you can guess the rest from here? Nevertheless, this stuff shall remain concealed from her since she knows nothing of it.

Thankfully, Irene and Frenchie manage to stand alone as very likable heroes. Unlike before when she doubted her faith as a nun, Sister Irene is now more confident and secure in the past, present, and future. Sensitive and commanding performance by Farmiga makes it simple but convincingly being scared on screen is no small feat which the Farmiga sisters excel in this series. The bets placed on Irene’s traumatic past ¾ what put her into the church are given a little muscle with flashbacks scattered throughout while her fight against Valak takes on a new meaning within that framing. However, the connection between family history and various additions to Conjuring mythology contained in “The Nun II” is glossed over rather quickly.

A ground man for hire, Frenchie has now got a job at a girls’ boarding school where he is a professional hot gardener and has gotten close to Kate (Anna Popplewell), one of the teachers there, and her daughter Sophie (Katelyn Rose Downey). At the end of the day, much as I love Irenchie and Bloquet’s performance, his bigger role does feel like a double-edged sword. After all, The Nun ended with a pointed re-surfacing of an early scene from The Conjuring in which Ed and Lorraine Warren screen footage of Frenchie’s exorcism, reminding us that the character’s fate is sealed to some degree. That plot armor takes some of the air out of the peril that Frenchie finds himself in throughout, but his growing affection for Marcella and Sophie really sells the tension once they’re put into peril by Valak’s attacks, and that extends to the rest of the students later on when the demon nun turns up the heat.

In place of Frenchie it is Irene who must look after a novitiate: Sister Debra (Storm Reid), sent away by her family from 1950s Mississippi’s racial hellhole to secure her some safety within church walls. It’s not such an interesting twist for this character as it becomes just another repetition from Irene’s first movie arc though. Reid brings undeniable personality to Sister Debra, but after her introduction, her utility as the audience’s surrogate mostly dominates her onscreen responsibilities, so when her character concludes that she has lost faith in god more because she needs to make sense than anything else. However, there was one moment in which Farmiga shared an action scene with Reid: An exorcism that trails behind in big 2023 comeback hallway fight sequences. The Nun II, Guardians 3, TMNT: Mutant Mayhem – I guess everyone’s got Oldboy on the brain.

Moving The Nun II’s action to a more populated French village, specifically into a boarding school however, was one of my favorite things about the horror movie. This is because it gives Valak an opportunity to torment not just main characters but other characters in different corners of the mid-century European architecture, resulting in some creative and unexpected scares from all sides. Michael Chaves (The Curse Of La Llorona) directs with Akela Cooper (Malignant, M3GAN), Ian B. Goldberg, and Richard Naing (The Autopsy of Jane Doe) writing the script for The Nun II that spends much of its first hour throwing knives into the air as set up forbidden places and cursed games that come later – like a scary, clompin’, stompin’ goat – climaxing them before hell breaks loose. One out-of-left-field, cruel attack on a kid with zero impact on the story in particular does a great job making the back half of the movie feel unpredictable.

Chaves has become quite an asset to this franchise having directed three films in The Conjuring world including The Curse of La Llorona and The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It. While neither of those films achieves the heights of the first two Conjuring movies, each has been an improvement on the last and The Nun II continues that streak by blending Chaves’ strong visual sensibilities with his love for humanism creating terrors.


The Jesus sequel specifics mathematics history fly too fast to say as much about the movie as it might have had however, in essence, it inventively and respectfully depicts Valak’s menace. The movie transfers its scene from a haunted house with possessed people to a new setting at a boarding school for scared kids thus raising the stakes that no character (save Frenchie) is ever entirely safe. In my opinion Irene and Frenchie are not less worthy of being Warrens but played by Taissa Farmiga and Jonas Bloquet and director Michael Chaves added another layer of Vala.

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