‘The Conjuring’ franchise has been one of the most successful franchises in recent times. The series has seamlessly expanded to form a universe with prequels and sequels, which make a detailed narrative of multiple ghosts. The first film of the instalment, ‘The Conjuring’, was released in 2013 to positive reviews and gigantic commercial returns. Since then, there have been six other films made as part of ‘The Conjuring’ universe. What makes this supernatural horror film series such a successful venture is how the makers have revived the classic techniques of storytelling and stylistics.
‘Annabelle’ was released in 2014 as a prequel to ‘The Conjuring’. Directed by John R. Leonetti, the film sets up the origins of the spine-chilling doll Annabelle. It stars Annabelle Wallis, Ward Horton, and Alfre Woodard. ‘Annabelle’ is shot by cinematographer James Kniest and edited by Tom Elkins; the score is composed by Joseph Bishara.
‘Annabelle’ was received negatively by both critics and audiences. The criticism was directed towards the reliance on jump scares, derivative narrative tendencies and focusing on building a universe, rather than focusing on cohesive storytelling. With a rating of 29% on Rotten Tomatoes, the quality saw a huge drop as compared to its predecessor. However, the film was a commercial success, earning a massive $257.1 million against a budget of $6.5 million.
For this article, I have taken into account films that have similar narrative structures and tone, and belong to the genre of supernatural horror. The films on this list are not all critical masterpieces but are worth a watch. So, without further ado, here is the list of best movies similar to ‘Annabelle’ that are our recommendations. You can watch several of these movies like ‘Annabelle’ on Netflix, Hulu or Amazon Prime.
12. Thirteen Ghosts (2001)
‘Thirteen Ghosts’ or ‘THIR13EN Ghosts’ is a supernatural horror film which follows the events after Ghost hunter Cyrus Kriticos dies, who leaves his fortune, which consists of his palatial house and his unique collection to his nephew and family. While it all seems to be good, the family starts to realize that the fortune includes his collection of malicious ghosts who seek to wreak havoc over the family. The film is not close to being a well-directed horror piece. However, what ‘Thirteen Ghost’ nails is the colour palette and overall look, credited to British filmmaker and cinematographer Gale Tattersall. The film builds upon the atmospherics with the well-designed production. ‘Thirteen Ghosts’ may not be a masterpiece, but it certainly is worth a watch.