The Conjuring: a Review with a Moral

The family was gone and after a long day I went to the movies to see the latest horror film, The Conjuring.  I know, I know, but everyone relaxes differently.

It was a good horror film with minimal gore and lots of scares.  It’s a combo of the haunted house/exorcist genre. Usually haunted house films are slow and boring and PG-13.  The Others with Nicole Kidman was an exception and very good.

First, the bumps and creaks in the night come.  Then the friendly ghost child.  Things continue to escalate in typical (but well-done) fashion. Finally, we get the full story.  150 years ago a Satan worshipper/witch killed her child and hung herself, cursing anyone who took her land. So we have our antagonist.

The events are based on a true story, at least real people.  Ed and Lorraine Warren were paranormal researchers in the 60s-70s and participated in séances and witnessed exorcisms.  They were catholic and religion played a minor theme.

The evil ghost had possessed and caused mothers to kill their children.  Here’s where you might think it gets creepy and sick and unChristian, but this is actually where it gets serious and spiritual.  Family was an important theme.

We learn early on as the ghost lady tells one of the 5 girls that she is going to kill the entire family. And HERE is where the spiritual application kicks in.

It was a movie meant to scare and make money. The director is the guy from the original Saw film. But it was a great allegory for the true spiritual struggle that every family–Christian or not–is going through. What the film portrayed through people being tossed around and scared and possessed was graphic and frightening.  What Satan does every day doesn’t make a great film but is essentially the same.

He wants to destroy your family. He is a powerful malevolent being.

Maybe you believe exorcisms are a Catholic thing or only in movies.  Go read Seeing the Unseen by Joe Beam. That book is a great study on Satan and evil spirits who interact with the material world (which includes you and me).

Satan doesn’t need to try to convince parents to take a butcher’s knife to their offspring.  Families are full of demonic activity:  anger, abuse, selfishness, greed, pornography and more.  Dysfunction is here to stay because of sin.

The film is about fighting for one’s family against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms (Ephesians 6:12).  My family has been through some battles and so has your family.


Love for family helps to overcome evil in the film.


An evil, sadistic, powerful being wants to destroy your family.  He wants to influence you to live a lifestyle and make decisions that will destroy your relationships with your spouse and kids.  He wants you to make as many mistakes as possible to mess up your kids even more than average. We live in a culture where marriage has been crumbling for decades, where parents cease to parent, where divorce is common and dysfunction is the norm.

How is the Evil One attacking you or your family?  Do something! Call on the name of Jesus.  Pray.  Seek advice from the Bible and mature men and women who have known Jesus a long time. Call a counselor/therapist/shrink.

Don’t let your life be a horror film.

The film ends with a real quote from the real Ed Warren.  Take it to heart.

“Diabolical forces are formidable. These forces are eternal, and they exist today. The fairy tale is true. The devil exists. God exists. And for us, as people, our very destiny hinges upon which one we elect to follow.”

An interesting interview with the guys who wrote the screenplay HERE.


2 thoughts on “The Conjuring: a Review with a Moral

  1. for minimal gore, and using mood, music, etc, it performed well.

    I did enjoy the nervous giggles and responses of others in the theater.

    for me the horror was all about family, and losing family. I cared about the characters which isn’t usually the case in most horror, they are simply fodder for the fun

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