Editor’s Note: This article contains major spoilers for The Nun II.
The Nun II is back with more chilling encounters and eerie revelations as Valak, the malevolent demon, returns to torment Sister Irene. Director Michael Chaves sheds light on the decision to keep Valak and Frenchie as distinct characters in the sequel, a choice that adds depth to the narrative and explores the sinister backstory of Valak.
The sequel picks up years after the initial showdown between Sister Irene (Taissa Farmiga) and Valak (Bonnie Aarons). Fate intervenes, bringing these two adversaries face to face once again, as Valak devises a cunning scheme to traverse Europe. In the first film, the shocking twist revealed that Valak had taken possession of Frenchie (Jonas Bloquet). During a recent interview with FilmSweep’s Perri Nemiroff, director Michael Chaves delved into the significance of maintaining the separation between Valak and Frenchie in the sequel, despite the demon’s extended possession of the young man:
“It was always a discussion. I think one of the big things is we wanted him to be – the relationship that he’s having with everyone at the school needs to be Frenchie. We need to establish someone that we love and is worth saving. And that’s one of the tricks of the movie, and a little bit of a magic trick or rule-bending is he needs to have a relationship with Sophie, with our young girl, he needs to have a relationship with Kate, the teacher, and you need to believe in these relationships and care about them even though we come to realize that Valak is within him, using him as a vessel.”
Chaves goes on to explain the importance of showcasing Frenchie’s humanity to highlight the agony of being a victim of Valak, with no control over how the demon manipulates his body. The director emphasizes, “That needed to be the true OG Frenchie, and it couldn’t be some Valak manipulation because I think if you thought that Valak was just becoming friends with Sophie to manipulate a situation, then everything was kind of thrown out the window. So that needed to be valid, and you needed to feel like that was a relationship worth fighting for.”
This approach adds a layer of complexity to the characters and their relationships, making the audience more invested in their fates as they grapple with the insidious presence of Valak.
The Nun II also delves into the expanded mythology of the franchise, shedding light on Valak’s activities before its encounter with the Warrens in The Conjuring 2. While the demon appears to meet its end in each installment of The Conjuring Universe, it continues to claim lives along the way. Valak’s level of menace depends on the power it wields, and most individuals who cross paths with it remain clueless about how to banish this malevolent force. This is where the expertise of characters like Sister Irene and the Warrens comes into play, offering a glimmer of hope amidst the darkness.
In her battle against an old enemy, Sister Irene finds new allies in her fight against the relentless Valak. Taissa Farmiga reprises her role as Sister Irene, joined by Sister Debra (Storm Reid) as they embark on an investigation to uncover the reason behind Valak’s return and its sinister intentions in this chilling marathon of horror. As the events unfold further down the Conjuring timeline, viewers are treated to a compelling narrative that explores how these characters avoid being consumed by one of the franchise’s most formidable antagonists.
The Nun II is now playing in theaters, promising spine-tingling thrills and a deeper dive into the dark and haunting world of Valak. Don’t miss the rest of Nemiroff’s conversation with Chaves for more insights, and in the meantime, be sure to check out our review of the latest installment in the Conjuring universe.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Separation
Q: What is the main focus of ‘The Nun II’?
A: ‘The Nun II’ primarily focuses on the separation of Valak and Frenchie, exploring their distinct characters and the importance of this separation in the sequel’s narrative.
Q: How does the director, Michael Chaves, justify keeping Valak and Frenchie separate in the film?
A: Director Michael Chaves explains that it was essential to establish Frenchie as a relatable character worth saving and to build genuine relationships with other characters in the story. This approach enhances the emotional impact of the film.
Q: Does ‘The Nun II’ offer any insights into the broader mythology of ‘The Conjuring’ universe?
A: Yes, the film expands the mythology by revealing what Valak was doing before encountering the Warrens in ‘The Conjuring 2.’ It also highlights the ongoing threat posed by Valak and the need for specialized help from characters like Sister Irene and the Warrens.
Q: Who are the main characters in ‘The Nun II,’ and how do they confront Valak?
A: Sister Irene, portrayed by Taissa Farmiga, returns as a key character with the ability to confront Valak. She is joined by Sister Debra, played by Storm Reid, as they investigate Valak’s return and its sinister intentions.
Q: Where can I watch ‘The Nun II’?
A: ‘The Nun II’ is currently playing in theaters, offering audiences a chance to immerse themselves in the dark and haunting world of Valak.