“The Conjuring,” which has earned more than $80 million at the box office, is being called the scariest movie of the summer. Many critics have given the film positive reviews.
“In very broad strokes, it tells our story well,” said Andrea Perron, whose family's experiences while living in an allegedly haunted farmhouse are depicted in “The Conjuring.”
Perron spoke at the Dixie Ghostland ParaCon at the Horse Creek Banquet Hall in Warrenville on Sunday, one day after she appeared on national television on “CBS This Morning: Saturday.”
Promoted as being based on a true story, “The Conjuring” was released in the United States and Canada on July 19. It stars Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga as paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren, who come to the aid of the beleaguered Perron and her family.
“'The Conjuring' is a beautiful piece of artistic craftsmanship,” Perron said. “I think it's one of the best films of its genre that has ever been created.”
But, she added, there are some “elements of fiction” and “discrepancies.”
Perron, 54, has written her own account of what happened in a three-volume trilogy called “House of Darkness House of Light.” The first two books are available online at www.amazon.com and www.barnesandnoble.com. The third will be published soon.
“'The Conjuring' introduces the idea of what happened to our family to the world, and, for that, I'm eternally grateful,” Perron said. “The case files of Ed and Lorraine Warren are the predominant focus of the film, but there is so much more. If you want to know the whole story, you simply have to read my books.”
Strange events began occurring immediately when Perron, her parents, and four sisters moved into the 18th-century Rhode Island farmhouse in 1971. The previous owner warned Perron's father to leave the lights on at night. Even though spirits lifted beds and smelled like rotting flesh, the Perrons remained in the house until 1980.
“It's represented in 'The Conjuring' that we were a godless family, and nothing could be further from the truth,” Perron said. “We were all born and raised in the Roman Catholic tradition. We were all baptized in the Church, and we were all blessed by a priest.”
“The Conjuring” also exaggerated the Warrens' impact on the situation she and her family faced, according to Perron.
“In the film, it's represented that they (the Warrens) rescue us, and then all is well, but that's not true,” she said. “They didn't solve all of our problems. They tried their best. They gave it the old college try, but it was beyond them.”
As for a scene involving an exorcism in “The Conjuring,” Perron had this to say: “That's not how it happened.”
Instead, there was a séance.
“They (the Warrens) insisted it needed to occur because they felt like my mother was oppressed,” Perron remembered. “They brought in a medium, they brought in a priest, and my father brought his incredibly bad attitude. He didn't want any part of it. He ended up punching Ed Warren in the face, and it took him (Warren) right to the floor. There was blood everywhere.”
Perron's mother, meanwhile, had to face an invader from the netherworld.
“Whatever attacked her spoke a language that is not of this planet,” Perron said. “Her voice was not her voice. Her body twisted and contorted into a ball in a way that a human body does not function. The chair that she was in levitated four feet off of the ground, and she was thrown 20 feet into an adjacent room.”
Horrifying events such as that one, Perron told the ParaCon audience, cause many people to ask her why she and her family remained in the farmhouse for so long.
“There are a lot of reasons,” Perron said. “But upon reflection, in retrospect, I now understand that we were supposed to be where we were. This adventure was a gift, and it was meant to be shared with the world.”