James Wan recently released the surprising movie Evil, which left everyone’s hair on end for a completely original story in American horror cinema. The end then blew up the many heads who have already had the chance to discover this new venture of the Malaysian filmmaker. However, in addition to all that has been said and even though it is different from his previous works, ‘Maligno’ brings, once again, something in common that relates to all the works of the genre commissioned by Wan, a striking and terrifying creature, and this is not to be forgotten any time soon.
Yes, many filmmakers who have ventured into the horror scene may have created monsters or other spooky characters that have been forever etched in movie history or even become symbols of pop culture. Of course, in addition to the mythological beings from the classics of literature such as vampires, werewolves and mummies, but we can cite emblematic characters who became known after having marked in the seventh art. It’s almost impossible not to meet icons like Jason Voorhees from Friday the 13th, Michael Myers from Halloween, Freddy Krueger from Nightmare, Pennywise from It, Xenomorph from Alien, Samara Morgan from The Call, Chucky from Toy Killer, Pinhead from Hellraiser, Leatherface from The Texas Chainsaw Massacre… Either way, there are countless personalities who have come to be true markers in style.
And James Wan seems to have a special ability to idealize these creatures consecutively. Most of these examples above are done by a great author in question, although he has obviously done such remarkable work as the ones cited. However, the director of Summon of Evil doesn’t seem to be restraining his creativity to design monsters that not only fulfill their function of scaring or surprising, but also become real popular hits and are capable of spawning new sequels and even spins. -offs derived from your universe. With that in mind, we have gathered here all the creatures that either left Wan’s mind or were simply reworked and acquired new concepts.
Puzzle – Mortal Games (2005)
Starting of course with Jigsaw, the “nice puppet” who has become a symbol of the Mortal Games franchise, through the voice of veteran actor Tobin Bell, who in the first film, directed by James Wan, also played the responsible killer. from the creation of the “games”, John Kramer. As we all know, we are already approaching the tenth film in the series, which has even been relaunched. And Jigsaw seems more and more present in the public imagination. The quantity of puzzle figures, key chains, shirts and many other collectibles is huge.
Billy Doll – Cries of Death (2007)
After the success of Death Games, which cost $ 1.2 million at the time, James Wan was given carte blanche from Universal to direct his next film, Killing Screams, which costs more than $ 20 million. The film even “paid for itself” and grossed $ 22 million, but it was still considered a failure, mostly in the opinion of critics, deemed bland and crass. But the director’s tribute was to movies like “Killer Toy,” as here we have the odd ventriloquist puppet, Billy, who comes to life thanks to the spirit of his former owner, Mary Shaw. The entity begins to terrorize a couple and create frightening situations.
Lipstick-Face Demon – Supernatural (2011)
After failing in Mortal Screams and Death Sentence, James Wan didn’t lower his head and went back to making a more authoritative horror film with Insidious – or Supernatural, a terrible Brazilian title. And it’s one of the director’s great works of horror, masterfully tackling a boy’s contact with the spiritual realm. After analysis by a psychic, they discover that the boy was under the influence of an evil entity, the Lipstick-Face Demon. Also called the Red Face Demon, his first appearance was one of the most disconcerting in recent cinema. It got even more bizarre when we got to see it in full. There are those who say that even today they have nightmares about this number.
Annabelle – Invocation of Evil (2013)
The terrifying story of the Annabelle doll, which caused unexpected accidents resulting in the deaths of those who did not believe in her power, is much older than filmmaker James Wan himself, not least because she is from the one of the hundreds of cases experienced by the most famous demonologist couple, Ed and Lorraine Warren. Emblematic figures of the spiritualist milieu who were brilliantly embodied by Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga in the firecracker Evil Invocation. Film that gave the horror genre, after a long time, a colossal box office, reaching the threshold of $ 318 million. Turns out the feature doesn’t exactly fit the doll’s tale, it only has a small initial cutout for the case. Enough for Annabelle to win three very successful spin-offs.
Witch Bathsheba Sherman – Summon of Evil (2013)
But, after all, what is The Conjuring all about and what creature is actually approached? The long, horrific and tragic tale of the witch Bathsheba Sherman, someone who allegedly even existed and was born in 1812. Bathsheba married Judson Sherman and had around four children, all of whom died before her fourth birthday. Years later, it was discovered that the witch performed sacrificial rituals with babies in the name of Satan, and after entering a state of deep depression due to loneliness, she committed suicide by hanging from a tree. in front of his house. The then medical examiner claimed he had never seen anything like it, as the slender body of the deceased woman had solidified in a way that appeared to have turned to stone. Evil Summon takes place centuries later and tells the story of the Perron family, the new residents of the old witch’s house and rife with hauntings and demonic entities. After the Warrens arrive, they learn that Bathsheba cursed all possessions before he died.
Bride in Black – Supernatural Chapter 2 (2013)
The second chapter of Insidious rekindled the theme of exploring the spiritual plane again and brought in a new entity to torment the Lambert family, the Bride in Black. A creature that, unlike the Red Face Devil, represents and causes a new sense of fear, precisely because of the modus operandi that she tries to conquer through her particular look. A lot helped by a ghostly atmosphere built by Joseph Bishara’s dark path and impeccable art direction. In addition to the still functional jumpscares of the Wan.
Valak The Nun – Summon of Evil 2 (2016)
Speaking of jumpscare, a generally frowned upon device in the horror genre to cause easy scares and appeal to sonic impact, it’s worth noting that Summoning Evil 2 is full of them. As if James Wan wanted to prove that we can bet on the tool and do well. Even if this new adventure of the Warren couple is just as frightening and touching as the previous one. Mainly for showcasing some of the great scenes in the director’s career and being filled with horrible creatures. Mainly the iconic nun who is actually one of the faces of the devil Valak. By introducing the Nun bit by bit and creating shots where you seem to see her everywhere, Wan builds a spooky and unforgettable character. And it didn’t take long to win a spin-off.
The Crooked Man The Crooked Man – Evil Summoning 2 (2016)
In addition to the first, Evil Summon 2 featured other cases and creatures just as terrifying as the main one developed, like the very strange Crooked Man. The Crooked Man, in the original, is based on a popular British ditty: “There was a crooked man who walked a crooked path. He found a crooked coin passing over a crooked ladder. He bought a crooked cat, which caught a crooked mouse. And they all lived together, in a crooked little house. The Crooked Man story has been adapted several times and generally in this svelte, bizarre guise. And Wan managed to make the creature even crazier and more frightening.
Gabriel – Mal (2021)
And finally we come to Maligno, a recent first which is causing a lot of talk and therefore we can not talk too much about it not to reveal spoils. But it can be said that Gabriel is one of the most creative and bizarre figures ever conceived by James Wan. Having a barely comprehensible Dantesque look and uncomfortable means of locomotion, in addition to his extraordinary strength and certain powers of telekinesis. This kind of monster gains even more outlines when its origin is finally revealed, being able to easily spawn new sequences to explore in other situations. Possess psychological layers too.
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