why the conjuring is scary

let's be real, 'The Conjuring' is Truly terrifying

You thought "Insidious" was bad? It is laughable in comparison.

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Horror movies can be tricky. Overusing jump scares is cheap, and if the suspense is drawn out too long, the movie can get boring. If the storyline and characters are shallow, the movie won't stick with you. There is a fine line that modern horror movies walk; the line that determines if the movie is just a Friday night flick or if it will be passed down from generation to generation as one of Hollywood's scariest. I believe that James Wan's 2013 "The Conjuring" falls into the latter category. Not only is the acting, writing, and directing masterfully done, but it is straight-up terrifying. In case you haven't seen it, here's a list of the top #3 reasons why this movie will continue to give it's viewers actual chills up their spines and keep them up at night.

1. Perfect use of suspense.

As I mentioned earlier, suspense can be a hard thing to handle. I think that if it's drawn out too long, the story can become a little boring. Some of you may argue with me and say that prolonged suspense can build a false sense of comfort, and that is true in some cases. Prolonged suspense, for example, works well in Stanley Kubrick's "The Shining"; we spend the majority of the movie safe from any real scares. The long period of "nothing" scaring us in actuality works for that movie - we start to feel the isolation of the hotel and the eerieness that comes with its daily life. This technique wouldn't have worked in "The Conjuring" though. After the Perron family movies into the home, we almost immediately start to see the fabric of things unravel. The doors opening on their own. The hand claps that aren't made by the kids playing. We get a little time between these things, but inevitably the malevolent spirits pick up their game at a steady pace - the mysterious bruises on Carolyn, the apparition of different ghosts, the attack on the girls as they sleep. The tension and severity of the Perron's interactions with the supernatural grow and grow until you are wound as tight as a bowstring for the climax: the possession of Carolyn Perron.

2. Deep characters.

This point is pretty self-explanatory. The characters have some depth; this has a lot to do with the brilliant acting. The chemistry is so obvious between each of them - when someone is worried about another character's safety, you don't doubt the authenticity of their concerns. In consequence, you feed off of that concern. Not only that, but every gasp, every scream feels so real that it makes your heart clench in your chest. These characters are truly terrified, and that keeps you "in" the movie.

3. The sense of realism.

A lot of horror movies are just unrealistic. Sure they can still be scary, but odds are you aren't going to run into any vampires or werewolves or the Man with the Fire Face from "Insidious" or any killer clowns like Pennywise from "IT" (unless you lived in America during the 2016 clown epidemic). Point being, "The Conjuring" has a more realistic flavor to it. After all, the characters in the movie are based on real people! Whether their story is actually true to any extent is debatable, but it still adds a level of horror to know that somewhere out there, the Perron family and the paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren actually exist.

Now let us talk about the antagonists. As I mentioned earlier, the way the antagonists are revealed is stealthy. We don't see the demon for a long time; we get flashes, we get hand claps from unknown sources, our own imagination gets the best of us, and then we get the possession of Carolyn. No fake looking ghouls. Bathsheba Sherman is the name of the evil spirit that has latched herself onto the Perron family; when she was still alive, she practiced witchcraft, killed her children and then hung herself. That's something that could happen in real life! Demented parents are something that actually exists and that is why it's terrifying. Not to mention the exorcism - whether you're a believer or not, records of exorcisms and demonic possessions do actually exist; whether they actually happened is up to you, but the fact that any frights we see in this movie seem more plausible than what happens in a lot of other horror movies is what ultimately leads "The Conjuring" to be one of the scariest movies in the 21st century.

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The 9 Eras Of Disney Animation

The evolution of Disney animation over the years
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As a kid I always loved movies, and no movies did it quite for me like Disney movies did. Whether they were old or new, there was something about Disney movies that just spoke to me. The music the characters, the stories-- they all helped to shape some of my fondest childhood memories and are responsible for many of my interests and beliefs today. But what I always found most interesting is the history behind these films, how the time they came out influenced their themes and meanings. So today I’ll be exploring just that-- the nine eras of Disney animations.

1923-1928: The Silent Era and the Origins of Disney

The history of Disney begins with the Silent Era. In 1923, Walt Disney, working for Laugh-O-Gram studios out of Kansas City, Missouri, created a short film called Alice’s Wonderland, which would serve as the first of the Alice Comedies. After the company declared bankruptcy, Walt moved to Hollywood, where he and his brother Roy formed Disney Brothers Cartoon Studios. They worked out a deal with Winkler Productions to produce the Alice Comedies and eventually, in 1926, moved their company to Hyperion Street, where it was renamed Walt Disney Studios. After the decline of the Alice Comedies, Walt created his first ever original character, Oswald the Lucky Rabbit, and produced 26 short comedies starring the character before a falling out with Charles Mintz, who had by 1928 taken over Winkler Productions. Legally, Oswald belonged to Mintz and his company, so he took the character and four of Disney’s animators and started a new animation company, Snappy Comedies.

1928-1937: Pre-Golden Age and Mickey Mouse

The Pre-Golden Age saw Walt recovering from the loss of Oswald and also set the stage for Disney as we know it today. In 1928, Walt, in collaboration with Ub Iwerks, created a new character that he originally named Mortimer Mouse. However, his wife didn’t like the name, so he renamed him Mickey (I think we can all agree this name is much better). Mickey made his first appearance in 1928 in a test screening of the short film called Plane Crazy. However, the film failed to pick up a distributor, so Walt went back to the drawing board and created Steamboat Willie, which was released in 1928. The film was an immediate success due to the fact that it was the first cartoon to feature synchronized sound and established Mickey as the mascot of Disney. After this, a series of Mickey Mouse cartoons were released. This series also saw the introduction of many Disney staple characters, such as Minnie Mouse, Pluto, and Goofy. Donald Duck, another iconic Disney character, first appeared in Disney’s Silly Symphonies, a series of animated short films that were popular for their innovative use of Technicolor. With this, Walt had successfully bounced back from the hardships of the Silent Era and set the stage for the Golden Age of Disney.

1937-1942: The Golden Age

The Golden Age of Disney began in 1937 with the release of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. The film was the first full-length feature film to use traditional animation and was an immediate commercial success, establishing Disney as one of the leaders of animated filmmaking. Other films that were released during this time include Pinocchio, Fantasia, Dumbo, and Bambi. Although all of these films would go on to become considered classics, at the time of their release only Snow White and Dumbo were commercially successful. What made this time considered the Golden Age wasn’t the commercial success of these films though, but rather the trends they created in terms of Disney filmmaking. Snow White was the first of the fairytale-based movies that Disney is known for and established the “Disney Princesses,” Pinocchio started the concept of taking well-known literature and turning it into a child-friendly film and Bambi explored the possibilities of making a movie through the eyes of a non-human character. Other Disney staples such as exaggerated villains, the use of music and prominent, comedic sidekicks were first introduced during this time as well. Another key characteristic of the films of this time was the inclusion of many dark scenes, which were usually sandwiched between upbeat and light scenes in order to create a mood shift. A similar, toned down version of this techniques would also be used in later films.

1943-1949: The Wartime Era

With the U.S.’s entry into World War II, Disney Studios faced lower budgets and a smaller team of animators as it entered the Wartime Era. Also known as the Package Era, the films of this time included Saludos Amigos, The Three Caballeros, Make Mine Music, Fun and Fancy Free, Melody Time, and The Adventures of Icabod and Mr. Toad. What made these films distinct from the Golden Age films is that instead of telling a single, continuous story, these films consisted of multiple short films within each. These films are largely ignored and widely unpopular, with fans criticizing them due to their lack of consistency and tone in each short. The Wartime Era also Disney Studios producing wartime propaganda, which included anti-Nazi commercials and flyers encouraging Americans to support the war.

1950-1967: The Silver Age and the Death of Walt Disney

Disney’s Silver Age, also known as the Restoration Age saw the return of many of the trends set forth by the Golden Age of Disney. Films released during this time include Cinderella, Alice in Wonderland, Peter Pan, Lady and the Tramp, Sleeping Beauty, One Hundred and One Dalmatians, The Sword in the Stone, and The Jungle Book. What made these films distinct from its predecessors was the use of more ornate backgrounds and softer colors. Furthermore, the Silver Age also saw the use of lighter themes balanced with more complex characters, creating many of the well-known characters that are still considered fan-favorites today. The Jungle Book was the last film that Walt himself worked on before his death in 1966, and the movie’s release marked the end of the Silver Age

1970-1988: The Dark Age and the Decline of Disney

Hope you guys have a flashlight ‘cos we’re about to enter a dark place, or rather a dark age (see what I did there?). The Dark Age of Disney, also known as the Bronze Age, saw Disney Studios struggle to find their footing without Walt there to hold the reins. This was a time of trial-and-error in which the animators shied away from traditional storytelling tropes seen in the Golden and Silver Ages and instead shifted toward darker and more secular stories. Films released during this time include The Aristocats, Robin Hood, The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh, The Rescuers, The Fox and the Hound, The Black Cauldron, The Great Mouse Detective, and Oliver and Company. With the exception of The Great Mouse Detective, which was both critically and commercially successful, most of these films only received little success, with The Black Cauldron being a box office flop. These films lacked Walt’s imagination and were criticized for only being intended to bring in money. The greatest criticism of these films was their departure from traditional animation and their use xerography. This saved both time and money, allowing animators to directly print their drawings onto cells. However, this process did have its limits and initially only black lines were possible using this method. As a result, films during this era are known as “Scratchy Films” because of the heavy black lines in their animation. While these films weren’t initially successful upon release, many have gone on to become cult classics. Also, the Disney Dark Age helped set the foundation for the pinnacle of Disney animation

1989-199: The Disney Renaissance and Birth of the Millennials

If you’re a millennial like me, then most of your favorite Disney moments and films likely come from the Disney Renaissance. The Disney Renaissance saw a return to the musical fairy-tale storytelling seen in the Golden and Silver Age while at the same time expanding on many of the themes and techniques introduced in the Bronze Age. Films released during this time include The Little Mermaid, The Rescuers Down Under, Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin, The Lion King, Pocahontas, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Hercules, Mulan, and Tarzan. These films were also the first films that Howard Ashman and Alan Menken worked on, both of whom are key elements to Disney’s musical success. The films during this time also had many important themes that would influence the current views of millennials; Beauty and the Beast and The Hunchback of Notre Dame taught us not to judge people by their appearances; Mulan and Hercules taught us the importance of making sacrifices; and Aladdin taught us that there’s nothing wrong with being ourselves and that the circumstances of our birth don’t have to dictate who we grow up to be.

2000-2009: Post-Renaissance Era

Also known as the Second Dark Age, the Post-Renaissance Era was unique in that whereas previous eras were marked with having a common theme about them, this era was defined as a time in which Disney tried their hands at new methods in storytelling, similar to the Bronze Age. Films from this time include Fantasia 2000, Dinosaur, The Emperor's New Groove, Atlantis: The Lost Empire, Lilo and Stitch, Treasure Planet, Brother Bear, Home on the Range, Chicken Little, Meet the Robinsons, and Bolt. These films explored new storytelling elements marketed towards kids and more mature themes marketed towards the kids that had grown up during the Disney Renaissance that were now teenagers and young adults. While Lilo and Stitch was a commercial success, spawning several sequels and a T.V. show, most of the other films released during this time only received moderate success. This was in part due to the fact that they also had to contend with huge movie franchises like Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings. Despite not doing as well as their predecessors, the films released during the Second Dark Age are well known for their innovation. Dinosaur was the first Disney film that used CGI animation, which would become a popular element of this era’s successor.

2010-present: Marvel, Star Wars, and the Second Disney Renaissance

Just as a Renaissance followed the first Disney Dark Age, a Second Disney Renaissance followed this Second Dark Age. Also known as the Revival Era, this era marked a return to the fairy-tale storytelling seen in the Gold and Silver Ages as well as the first Disney Renaissance. During this time, Disney bought the rights to Marvel and Lucasfilm, meaning they no longer had to worry about trying to market their films toward older audiences since the MCU and Star Wars did that for them. Films released during this time include Princess and the Frog, Tangled, Winnie the Pooh, Wreck it Ralph, Frozen, and Big Hero 6. Like the first Disney Renaissance, the Second Disney Renaissance built off several things introduced by its predecessor. Tangled, for example, used the CGI techniques first used by Dinosaur. Most of the films of this era have been met with great popularity, with Frozen being the highest grossing animated film of all time and Big Hero 6 being the highest audience-rated film of this time period.

And there you have it, the nine eras of Disney animations. I hope you guys enjoyed reading about the history of Disney and its growth through the years. I personally loved writing this article and look forward to writing more like this one.

Cover Image Credit: Travel and Leisure

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7 TV Shows And Movies To Look Out For Summer '19

Honey, you've got a big storm coming.

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I am thoroughly convinced that summer 2019 is THE season of new and highly anticipated content. If you don't believe me, just look at this:

1. Stranger Things ​​(Season 3) 

The third installment of the 1980s sci-fi thriller comes out this July 4th and fans are counting down the days as they wait. Need I say more?

2. Black Mirror (Season 5)

Head over to Netflix RIGHT NOW because the fifth season of the fan-favorite unnerving tech anthology just came out. I already binged the whole thing and I highly recommend. Plus, your old favorite pop princess might make an appearance. ;)

3. Men in Black: International

Oh yeah...your favorite alien franchise is back.

4. Toy Story 4

Let your inner-child shine as the fourth installment of the heart-melting toy-centric movie series comes back to grace all our movie theater screens.

5. Big Little Lies (Season 2)

FINALLY! This past Sunday, the 2nd season of the widely popular drama was released on HBO. Even though we've only seen 1 episode, it was amazing. Plus, Meryl Streep just joined the already star-studded cast -- how do you beat that?

6. Spider-Man: Far From Home

Your favorite Spiderman (Tom Holland) is back and better than ever. This time, Peter Parker sets off on a European adventure, and I don't know about you, but I can't wait.

7. The Lion King

Donald Glover, Beyoncé, and Seth Rogan...what could be better? The live-action remake of a childhood favorite is finally bound to hit theaters this July, and it's going to be epic.

So, get ready to plan your movie/TV binge days because you DON'T want to miss these.

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