You’ve heard about it – it’s been on Facebook, it’s been on the Trending Topics on Twitter for weeks, and it’s cashing in millions more than its $11,000 budget. But is Paranormal Activity really that scary? The truth is…no, it’s not. Paranormal Activity tells the story of a couple, Katie and Micah, who have moved into a new home and begin to experience paranormal activities occurring in their home. After a few nights of these occurrences, Micah decides to buy a camera to capture the happenings on tape. And naturally, from then on, it only gets worse.
Like The Blair Witch Project, Paranormal Activity is filmed documentary style and is meant to engage the viewer to make them feel as if they are in the situation. This is supposed to create more suspense for the viewer, which it does. The concept of the film is great and so is the plot, or at least, the little plot that the film has. I mean, how many times do you set up a camera in your bedroom and wake up to see clear evidence of a spirit in your house? With a film like this, you’d expect it to be cut throat scary. I’ve heard people walked out of the theaters because they couldn’t handle it. … Really?
If anything, Paranormal Activity is, dare I say, boring. Yes, I understand the definition of suspense but after a few nights of the viewer watching Katie and Micah sleep and nothing extraordinary happening (except some thuds here and there), you begin to lose interest in the film and start to wonder when the action will pick up. Yes, we’ve established there is something in your house, but how many times can you play out the “I hear something” card? Is this really all it takes to scare people these days? I personally am a HUGE fan of horror films and the “horror” in this was extremely disappointing and redundant. The director also did a mediocre job of building suspense. It’s not until the end that the suspense actually does result in a very intense sequence; other times, you’re waiting…waiting…waiting…holding your breath….and…nothing!
On the bright side, there is brilliant comic relief placed in the film at the right times. It’s those moments that make the characters seem more real and cause you to feel for them. The emotions of Katie felt legitimate and you can’t help but feel like Micah as he tries to be the “man” and provoke the demon.
Now, don’t get me wrong, this movie is definitely creepy. There is nothing worse than knowing there is a demon in your room and there is absolutely nothing you can do about it. I sat in a theater with squealing and screaming girls. (And when I say screaming…you would think these chicks were sitting next to the actual demon).
Overall, Paranormal Activity was just another decent movie with TONS of hype. (Think…The Dark Knight. What was good in that movie besides Ledger’s portrayal of The Joker and the CGI?) First time Director Oren Peli did a great job of keep with his choice of cinematography. Though it’s told through the hands of the actors, the camera is not shaky and is placed on a tripod for the most intense scenes.
If you scare easily, you will lose your mind during this movie. If not, Paranormal Activity will have you annoyed and in stitches from laughter, like me.
Overall Rating: 3.7/5 Stars = C+
By: Kenni Nwajagu
Contributing Editor for Gossip On This
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