The worst of the Conjuring spinoffs, The Nun follows Demián Bichir’s Father Burke and Taissa Farmiga’s Sister Irene as they travel to a remote Romanian monastery to investigate the mysterious suicide of Charlotte Hope’s Sister Victoria – with the repetitive narrative detailing the pair’s ongoing efforts at solving the case and, eventually, battling an evil, demonic force. It’s worth noting that The Nun, before it transforms into an entirely tedious cinematic experience, boasts an opening stretch that holds a fair degree of promise, as filmmaker Corin Hardy does an effective job of establishing a seemingly interesting mystery and the movie’s two central figures – with, alas, the entertaining vibe coming to an end virtually the second Burke and Irene arrive at that aforementioned Romanian monastery. The Nun, past that point, suffers from a seriously sluggish pace that’s compounded by a total lack of scares and absence of wholeheartedly compelling characters, with the movie’s meandering midsection containing a seemingly endless series of scenes in which the protagonists explore oppressively dark environments. There’s a palpable sense of wheel-spinning at work here, as scripter Gary Dauberman suffuses the narrative with a whole host of long, pointless sequences that serve only to pad out the interminable runtime (including an almost stunningly tedious sequence detailing Sister Irene’s attempts at saving Father Burke after he’s buried alive). By the time the shockingly dull and underwhelming climax rolls around, The Nun has certainly confirmed its place as one of the worst and most ill-conceived horror movies to come around in quite some time.
1/2 out of ****