By Thomas H Cullen (UK)


Empty terror seeks out peace that’s not empty. In return, the peace that’s not empty shares its own condition with the terror that’s empty. After this act of distribution, the terror that’s now changed and acts like peace sacrifices its newfound privilege. Finally, the peace that was inspiring to terror is now forced to sacrifice itself as well, and just give way to the original state of terror that’s empty.

The sequence that’s just been described is the overview of Annabelle: Creation. In the beginning, terror that’s by itself turns to its opposite, which by definition isn’t by itself, because peace can obviously co-exist. In order to honour its own condition, peace feels obliged to let terror imitate peace. As the result of this change, terror is now the obligation to co-exist. Of course though, terror being a force which co-exists means to betray its own source of being, which in turn requires that terror simply stop imitating peace. Terror stops imitating peace, but now peace is in the problematic state of knowing that its own nature couldn’t be copied.

So what it seems that needs to be taken away from this, is that peace is the paradox of not being able to share itself. And this is a classic type of paradox. Peace is balance, and balance is distance – the theme of Annabelle: Creation is that distance can’t be infinite.

Where does distance begin? Distance is the central idea of Annabelle: Creation, where incidents that take place are defined by actions related to distance. But where does distance begin? If peace is distance, terror is the absence of distance. This makes terror into the very image of intimacy; intimacy is the spirituality of physical matter, which makes terror intrinsically connected to physical matter being a source of elevation.

Distance destroys the elevation, which is what Annabelle: Creation shows. Janice moves into the Mullins farmhouse, along with her group, and her story of terror is seeing images of distance torment images of intimacy. Throughout Annabelle: Creation, it’s where distance ends that’s where the source of terror exists. When Janice uses the stair lift machine, the film makes sure to show the terror being at the edge of the stair lift. When Linda tries to get rid of the Annabelle doll, it’s by the well that’s far removed from the farmhouse where the terror exists. And so on and so forth.

Back to the issue of distance and elevation: elevation is purity, which begs the question of why distance is diametric to purity. Purity is the inability to harm, which makes distance into a force which hurts the inability to harm. The inability to harm has no distance.

Protection has no distance. But protection implies presence, and presence is divide. Divide isn’t supposed to be synonymous with no distance. However, what if the divide is merely the reality between the protector and the protected?

Can the protector protect by divide being understood as the protector and the protected? Instead of divide being understood as related to distance, divide can be understood as the mutual absence of distance and separation. The separation of distance isn’t able to inflict terror, and the terror of separation isn’t real either.

The fundamental point: Annabelle: Creation is a story about the protector and the protected not being able to carry out their roles because of the problem of interpretation. Interpretation will cause a force to terrorize another force.

Needless to say, Annabelle: Creation is a wonderful work of art, and is the best of the Warren franchise. It’s symbolism is also meaningful as it applies to the greatest movie of all time: Nocturnal Animals. Nocturnal Animals is a story about the origin of reality not requiring sacrifice, whereas Anabelle: Creation is a story that appears to believe in the opposite. For Annabelle: Creation, sacrifice is necessary, but Nocturnal Animals is the much greater purity of understanding the redundancy of sacrifice

Rating: 4/5



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