ANNABELLE: CREATION (2017) Reviews and overview

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‘You don’t know the real story’

Annabelle: Creation is a 2017 supernatural horror film directed by David F. Sandberg (Lights Out) from a screenplay by Gary Dauberman (Annabelle). It stars Stephanie Sigman, Talitha Bateman and Lulu Wilson.

Collaborating with Sandberg behind-the-scenes from his Lights Out team were production designer Jennifer Spence and editor Michel Aller, joined by director of photography Maxime Alexandre (The Other Side of the Door) and costume designer Leah Butler (Paranormal Activity 3 and 4).


A spin-off from James Wan’s horror hit The Conjuring, the first Annabelle movie grossed a massive $256,873,813 worldwide against a budget of $6.5 million. With a larger budget of $15 million, by September 29, Annabelle: Creation has taken $296,232,196 worldwide at the box office.

Several years after the tragic death of their little girl, a dollmaker and his wife welcome a nun and several girls from a shuttered orphanage into their home. Unfortunately, they soon become the target of the dollmaker’s possessed creation, Annabelle…


Annabelle: Creation is superior to Annabelle, but it’s hard to say that it’s vastly different. The intent is the same, only the execution is more inspiring. But the conclusion rushes forward, the pratfalls are nearly identical and this movie hits the same fanatical slights as ever. That, yet again, leaves a disappointing aftertaste, notwithstanding the lavish blend of horror, mood and tension beforehand.” Jordan Richardson, The Canadian Cinephile

“I may not have been someone who needed another Annabelle movie, but I’m so glad it was Sandberg who was behind it, because his pure passion for classic horror oozes through in every single frame, and I really had a blast with it. I wouldn’t call it “scary” by any means for those of us who eat, sleep, and breathe horror, but Sandberg has managed to create something of an entertaining roller coaster ride that never lets up once the director lets the evil in Creation go full throttle.” Heather Wixson, Daily Dead

“Here, Sandberg once again manipulates lighting, composition and suspense, framing shots in such a way that we’re constantly searching the shadows for hints of movement, while drawing out scenes for maximum tension. He loves to make out-of-focus shapes budge in the background, and instructs his actors either to whisper or otherwise speak their dialogue so softly that we lean in to catch their words, making ourselves that much more vulnerable to whatever might jump out of the frame…” Peter Debruge, Variety

” …opening hour is so strong that we can forgive its trespasses and truthfully, even when the familiar tropes kick in (if you’ve seen one girl dragged backwards into the dark, you’ve seen ’em all) there’s still enough moments of Bava-esque weirdness to make you smile (watch out for that scarecrow!).” Chris Alexander,


“As he did with his assured debut in Lights Out, Sandberg demonstrates a deft affinity for the elaboration of horror conventions, as well as the expansion of the Conjuring universe. After deploying the requisite jump scares that get events in gear, the helmer settles into measured pacing that deliberately maneuvers the characters into mounting imperilment while gradually revealing the magnitude of the threat facing them.” Justin Lowe, The Hollywood Reporter

Annabelle: Creation is as much about kids surviving extraordinary danger as it is developing the Conjuring universe. Wilson and Bateman are excellent, as are their costars who play the mean girl orphans who don’t include the sisters […] Annabelle: Creation is full of terrifying creepy imagery, and it’s great at teasing the audience with buildup. This is sure to be the scariest movie of the summer. Fred Topel, Nerd Report

“It’s about twenty minutes before there’s anything remotely resembling a bump in the night, but once there is, the pace rarely lets up, partially to ride roughshod over plot holes you could drive a monster truck through. And with so many characters to menace, the last thirty minutes become more frenetic than terrifying, more hackneyed than horrifying.” Chris Hewitt, Empire

” …doesn’t feel focus-grouped to death or spawned purely for profit margins. It has echoes of the original film, and works more with mood and less with cheap scares than either Annabelle or The Conjuring 2, resulting in a truly effective genre flick. It’s not perfect, but it’s damn closer than anyone would have predicted.” Brian Tallerico,

Cast and characters:

  • Talitha Bateman as Janice
  • Stephanie Sigman as Sister Charlotte
  • Miranda Otto
  • Anthony LaPaglia as Samuel Mullins
  • Lulu Wilson (Ouija: Origin of EvilDeliver Us from Evil)
  • Philippa Coulthard as Nancy
  • Grace Fulton
  • Mark Bramhall as Father Massey
  • Adam Bartley as Officer Fuller
  • Alicia Vela-Bailey as Evil Mrs. Mullins
  • Samara Lee (The Last Witch Hunter)
  • Taylor Buck
  • Lou Lou Safran
  • Lotta Losten

Production company:

  • New Line Cinema
  • Atomic Monster
  • The Safran Company

Filming locations:

Los Angeles, California

Film Facts:

The film was announced as Annabelle 2.

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