Paranormal Activity 3

2011-11-14 13:42
 
Paranormal Activity 3
What it's about:

In 1988, young sisters Katie and Kristi befriend an invisible entity who resides in their home.
 
What we thought:

When I reviewed the first Paranormal Activity in 2009, I agreed that it succeeded completely in what it set out to do – which was to terrify the bejeezus out of you. It did that with novel cinematic choices; static cameras over the more commonly used handheld, jerky kind, and a killer sound design, for example.

It's surprising that the highly stylised concept has maintained this far into what is now a franchise. Seriously, how often can one retread the same concept before you're a Nightmare on Elm Street?

Co-directors Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman do come up with at least one new "angle" to the camera work, but that only feels like a nice extra. The truth is that the juice has run out of the story, and there's little in the way of space to move with the concept. 

Not that it's a bad concept: Oren Peli (director of Paranormal Activity, and now producer) and his crew still recognise that suspense breeds terror and gore only inspires disgust. This much is intact. There are nerve-jangling moments aplenty in Paranormal Activity 3 and indeed in all the prior Paranormal Activity movies, which would make an excellent boxset if you're into that sort of thing.

As per the first two films the characterisations are pleasantly personable, even well-drawn. After all, it's a genre that prides itself on its paper-thin characters. At least the Paranormal Activity franchise has what feels like real people in it, though weirdly, we meet them counter-chronologically through the series.

But you also have to recognise that at some point a once dreaded monster/villain/antagonist will just become a self referential jerk – ask Freddie, or Jason, or whatever the hell it is that's bothering Katie and her sister.

The best thing that can happen to the next Paranormal Activity movie is that it gets shitcanned before it's made. To be honest, if Peli really sought a claim to filmmaker greatness, he'd have put an end to proceedings five seconds before the end of the first film, anyway. Such as it is, now is the time to take Katie's advice to her boyfriend from that movie and just leave well-enough alone.


Please, Hollywood. Not another one.
Read more on:    review  |  horror  |  movies

Chantal 2011/11/16 4:13 PM
  • Rating:
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
Was so looking forward to the movie but the trailers that were shown didn't seem to be included in the actual movie??? I was disappointed, wasn't particularly scary and took what felt like forever for anything to happen. The second one was way better.
NEXT ON CHANNELX
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.