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1/10
Waste of my time and money
bingandgeorge29 November 2009
Warning: Spoilers
What can I say about this film. After all the hype, i was expecting something good, a new Blair witch project, or a new exorcist. What I got instead was an awful episode of candid camera! The acting was shocking, My houseplants do a better scared! Her 'fear' was completely non existent. His acting of 'big hero out to save his girlfriend' was simply woeful, with little or no emotion shown by either of them. The plot made as much sense as a drunks ramblings. if a demon makes a shadow, then where is the demon, has to be there somewhere? 1 is too high of a rating. Of the 'scary bits', where were they? Doors opening ans closing by themselves, ooh thats so scary, if your 12. As an adult, i was expecting more of a horror show, not bad special effects, like the appalling baby powder incident. Just why? being hunted by a demon, great, show us something scary then. Something worth the entry price maybe? There are two scary bits, and they are only scary as a sudden shock, not a horror aspect. Truly, truly terrible Don't waste your time and money When i had to go to the loo. yes it was that boring, i saw a lad saying he'd rather see this film than new moon, i was happy to tell him no, this is a waste of your time. Oh, and if you do go and see it, pick your audience. Ours was shared with 20 pubescent girls, who screamed at the slightest thing, such as the spider.
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1/10
Paranormal Activity or Paranormal CRAPTivity is an illogical, dumb movie.
VinceRocca1 November 2009
Warning: Spoilers
Paranormal CRAPTivity is a great idea. I was so psyched to see it, but it doesn't play out. The marketing got me and a lot of other butts in the seats and I say good for the filmmaker, he made this piece of crap, sat on it for years, was told by everyone it was crap and they couldn't sell it, then along came Spielberg and finds the marketing angle, Let's pull a Jackass but show the audience terrified instead of laughing. I just wish they had a better movie to begin with.

Anyone who has had to canvas a house knows you turn on every light in every room you pass as you explore the room.

When a noise is heard he has the presence of mind to grab the camera turn on it's light but not bother to flip on the stair lights on his way down?

When you exit the couples bedroom there is a room on the left that was NEVER entered. The door is open, but they just walk past it.

At another point he exits the bedroom and b-lines for the far left room without turning on any lights?

When he looks in the attic his only light was the camera light, he then gives her the camera so he can explore the dark attic, HE HAS NO LIGHT???

Why wouldn't he want to call the Demon dude? Why would she be against the camera? Their motives are questionable.

If I have a camera on us and I find the misses outside in the cold (AND she doesn't remember it), I'm checking the footage the following day to see what time she got up. That's when I see her standing there. I'm thinking this chick is gonna kill me, and I'm calling her mother or her sister.

Another thing, they don't have a 9-5 job, why not stay up all night?

Top 10 things to do when things go bump in the night.

10. Grab the camera turn its light on but don't bother to flick a light switch when you pass it.

09. Give only light source back to girl and find photo in pitch black attic.

08. Don't examine tape when girl sleep walks. If you do don't worry that she's standing over you for 3 hours.

07. When you get phenomenal footage of your girl getting drug to another room, do nothing with the footage and spend another night in the room.

06. When your girl has a mysterious bruise/bite don't bother taking her to the ER. You probably don't have insurance anyway, this isn't Canada after all.

05. Don't bother to get a dog for protection. Despite the cat statue on the fireplace, you hate animals anyway.

04. Take a big interest in girl's demon, but refuse to call demon guy, you're too rich to afford that.

03. Find footsteps on floor and get great footage of it, but don't call media or police.

02. Make sure the 'chosen one' sleeps next to the open door. NEVER offer to trade spots with her or lock the door.

01. Don't Google anything until act three, research is a waste of time.

00. Keep the hardwood floors clean, because the most interesting thing about the movie was when I turned to the wife and said, "Those are nice floors," and she said, "I was thinking the same thing."
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8/10
Wonderful Under Certain Conditions
Zombafyed30 October 2009
PARANORMAL ACTIVITY is THE most popular movie of the year and will ultimately be regarded as one of the best horror movies of all time. Therefore, PA has warranted a HUGE debate on whether it sucks or not.

Under this pretense, I have divided this review into 3 sections: 1 for the things in the movie that work, 1 for the things that don't, and 1 for the summation.

******THE GOOD******************************

1. Originality - not a cheap knockoff or a member of Hollywood's non-stop horror remake/reboot wave. That is a game winner right there! Comparable to the Blair Witch Project, PA has received a lot of flack as being a rip off of BWP. Taken into consideration, the film's only real similarity to BWP is the use of home camera/1st person footage, and non-professionals inducing reactions from the supernatural world. That said, you have to answer yourself a question: Would you rather see another Texas Chainsaw Massacre remake, or a completely original off-BWP type film?

2. Suspense and Tension - the film does not rely on cheap scares and loud noises deafening you to induce the desire reaction of fear. Nor does it have the smallest fraction of gore/sex/exploitation compared to most of today's horror movies. If you prefer horror movies that usually don't stick with you and follow you out of the theater, then skip it by all means. The film gives you a few inches, and leaves your imagination to finish the mile.

A suggestion on viewing the film: If you want to get the most out of Paranormal Activity, then DO NOT see it in the local theater on a Friday night. We all know what happens when you are in a theater with middle and high school kids during a horror movie. To fully immerse yourself in the movie, see it with your significant other, by yourself, or with just a couple of friends at a time when the theater is the least crowded. Try to see it at night, or at home in the dark. This film invades the sanctity of one's bedroom, and the old tactic of pulling the covers over your head doesn't work.

3. Special Effects - even on a small budget, the film provides some very impacting scenery. Some effects are blatantly obvious, and some of the best effects are actually the most subtle.

4. Acting - the movie is well acted considering it is full of unknowns. The characters are not obnoxious like most horror movie protagonists. They appear genuine and very convincing in most of the film. But in some scenes, not so much. More below.

5. Plot - there is a pleasant (oxymoron) surprise with the direction the film went regarding the source of the phenomena. It's not your typical ghost or haunted house story. I will not embellish on this as it will spoil the movie for those who haven't or are deciding to see the movie.

******THE NOT SO GOOD***********************

1. Writing - this is actually a 50/50 split. The 'supernatural' scenes are very convincing considering the subject matter, whether scripted or improvised. However, the dialog and character motivation/action during the 'down time' is unrealistic at times. This is a large complaint by those who didn't like the movie. Although the film is a large departure from teen filled slasher movies, the characters at times seem to be just as brainless as the teens getting whacked by Jason. There is a lot of "WHY DIDN'T THEY JUST....?" scenes in the movie.

2. Acting - like the writing, the acting seems to suffer in the 'down time'. Fortunately, during the important (scary) scenes, the acting is spot-on, and very convincing. However, you might be taken out of the movie when the protagonists are interacting with each other during the in-between scenes, and the authenticity of their relationship is questionable in some parts.

3. Scenery - granted that the whole movie is filmed in or on the characters' house, the static viewpoint of the camera gets a little boring. With all the phenomena going on, it would have been refreshing to see things from a different angle, especially in the bedroom. Fortunately, this doesn't hinder the movie, just a minor complaint.

******AS A HORROR FAN***********************

Follow the suggestions above regarding with who, where and how to watch the movie. Seen under the right circumstances, and with the right state of mind, the film can be very effective, and having you looking over your shoulder when you turn out all the lights in the house, and crawl into bed. For this reason, I fully endorse this movie as a new member of the horror family. Fresh and original, the movie deserves all of the attention it is getting.

Let this be a glaring message to Hollywood that originality is still the craved for in the movie industry. Horror fans have grown tired of having their favorite classics butchered and pointlessly remade. Directors and producers do not deserve revenue for just upping the violence and sexual gratification of old horror movies.

The film's success is also a great indication that as a population, movie goers respond better to thought provocative subjects than mindless in-your-face cannon fodder. It relieves me to some degree to see that tension-fear based horror movies still have the chance to take the cake. Especially on such a small budget.

Well Done, producers, directors, and actors. 8/10
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1/10
You're kidding, right?
smackadope4 November 2009
Warning: Spoilers
OK. It's not at all scary and there is no gore except for a bloody t-shirt at the end. It would be a "G" rated movie if they didn't use the f-word for half the dialog.

Here's a transcript of the whole movie. (pretty much verbatim, stretched out over 2 hours)

Guy: Haha, you're being stalked by a ghost.

Girl: F@#$ you.

Guy: I bought a camera so we can see your ghost.

Girl: F@#$ you.

Psychic: I'm a psychic! ooooo.... I feel something....evil. So, I'm going home now. Goodbye. (30 seconds of screen time)

Guy: Haha, you're talking to a psychic.

Girl: F@#$ you.

Guy: Wow. That door closed on it's own. We should get a Ouija board.

Girl: F@#$ you.

Guy: I got a Ouija board!

Girl: F@#$ you.

Guy: Look it caught on fire (special effect #1) and now there's a demonic symbol on it. Help me decipher it.

Girl: F@#$ you.

Guy: I put baby powder all over the hall, and now there's big frog footprints to your side of the bed. (special effect #2 - bad stop motion)

Girl: F@#$ you.

Psychic: I just dropped in to say I'm still a psychic. (15 seconds of screen time)

Guy: Wow, something pulled you out of bed and we got it on film. (special effect #3)

Girl: F@#$ you.

Guy: Honey, where are you going with that knife?

Girl: F@#$ you.

Police : Police! Put down the knife! (bang!)

THE END
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1/10
Boring, Lame, Not scary, not interesting, Do Not See
theodran23 October 2009
Warning: Spoilers
Let me begin by praising those who marketed this film. My favorite myth is the one about how Spielberg (one of the producers) was given a DVD but couldn't finish watching it in his own home because he was too scared.

I GUARANTEE that I wouldn't be surprised if nearly every positive review on this site is part of the marketing campaign. I further GUARANTEE that I wouldn't be surprised if the advertisements you have seen of audiences cowering in fear contain at least some "shills" - - paid audience members. I further GUARANTEE that you yourself will almost certainly be bored out of your mind and wonder, during every single frame: WTF? Now to briefly describe the film: A boring couple sets up a camera in their boring house and when they look at the footage of what occurs in their sleep, they hear strange noises, see their bed cover lift as if someone had farted, see footprints made of talcum powder on their hardwood floor, see the woman sleep walk and stand next to the bed for two hours, and see a Ouija board catch fire.

That's pretty much it. Not only that, my telling of it is more compelling than what you would have seen in the theater. Now you owe me 11 bucks.

I saw it in a packed theater at 930 pm -- an ideal audience at an ideal time. No one jumped. No one shrieked. Hell, at one point I wondered whether anyone in the theater was even awake. I know I barely was. This movie will make an EXCELLENT case study for classes in marketing.

All I ask and pray is this: LORD, if you hear me, if indeed you exist, please don't let this director ascend through the ranks of Hollywood. Because if he is given a big budget to make a "real" film, there will be one more no-talent director flooding our theaters with crap.
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1/10
Awful Movie
kasey-schram7 November 2009
Warning: Spoilers
All my friends told me how scary and terrifying this movie was. And how they were jumping every five seconds. This movie is full of lectures and boring talks between Micha and Katie. About twenty minutes into it (which seems like hours) is them just talking about the "ghost", with nothing frightful happening. At first i though it was just the introduction to the movie, and that it was going to get better....but it just got worse.

During the night, nothing happens except doors opening. yeah, so scary! Footsteps walking up stairs might freak you out, but it's really nothing. it's not creep at all and very stupid. Katie gets dragged out of the bed, but it's so unrealistic.

Don't waist your time watching this.
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1/10
A masterclass on how to make big money out of junk
Genevieve1224 November 2009
Warning: Spoilers
That's about the only thing I must admire about this piece of patronizing crap.

It was made a couple of years ago and yet it only became popular now because of all the hype. The only thing that is worth it about this "movie" is its superb marketing campaign. It's funny how the "the scariest film in the history of cinema" formula works every single time, like throwing bits of food at a pack of hungry dogs, they're always gonna go for it, and it's really sad, specially how American audiences are apparently so amazed by this rubbish.

This is the kind of film I would play on Halloween to a bunch of 9 year olds with no criteria, but all these young adults flinching and getting their knickers in a twist with the cheap thrills from P.Activity? Good grief. Their lives must be really lame and gray to be blown away by this tripe.

Why is this film so sh*te? Well, it has been thoroughly explained in all the reviews with few stars, and I couldn't agree more. Acting is appalling, the movie doesn't really go anywhere, there's no big revelation, the scary bits consists of thumps, noises, cries, doors slamming, shadows, a scary video on the web, and a wee bit of fake blood. That's it. Special effects on a budget. And the movie has the quality of one of those crappy 1995 homemade pornoes. Complete rip off.

If you must see this for yourself, go ahead, waste 100 minutes of your time, but do not I repeat DO NOT pay for this movie.
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1/10
Lame
Jamzo9 December 2009
Warning: Spoilers
Just back from the cinema. Oh dear, what a straightforward story - no twists or turns. Just the irritating girlfriend and the absolute bonehead boyfriend - and how stupid and unbelievable they are! They really just go to bed normally after how many days of being visited on a nightly basis by a god-damn demon??? A couple of bits did make my hair stand on end but by night #18 or was it #25 I'd had quite enough. When the girlfriend got dragged out of bed I struggled not to laugh aloud: that was hilarious! I began to wonder if it was some sort of political allegory (it's the sort of film where you can drift off quite easily) - you know, perhaps it's a post 9/11 film and the boyfriend's reaction being somewhat dumb and blinkered is a parallel to our own rather ineffectual attempts to outsmart the bad guys. In that case, perhaps two stars?
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4/10
Overrated and Over-hyped
pn101211 October 2009
Warning: Spoilers
Not one part of the movie scared me. Production values are obviously not there on purpose, and the movie feels cheap the entire way through. I went in expecting a lot from this movie based on user and critic reviews and I was very disappointed.

The story is basic and makes little sense when trying to tie back to another storyline about a girl named "Diane." The entire movie is about a couple teasing a demon until they tick him off enough to kill and possess the people inhabiting the house.

Cheaply made movie that looks and feels cheaply made with a corny, stereotypical storyline thats been done multiple times. The movie left me with nothing when it was done. Don't waste your cash.
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1/10
I want my money back!!!
rubenbenavides62623 October 2009
Warning: Spoilers
98% of the movie was completely LAME! The plot sucked, the acting sucked, and the camera movement was exaggerated and made me want to throw up.

Throughout the entire movie I was hoping and praying that there was going to be something scarier that would happen. This is the entire movie summed up for you.

Something weird happening to the girl..the start recording themselves to see if they catch footage or weird things happening..they hear a noise..they go to sleep..the door opens...they go to sleep...something moves downstairs..they go to sleep..something bangs on the walls..they go to sleep..something breaths..they go to sleep..finally something a little bit scary happens..the movie ends...oh ya and at one point a demon with hooves leaves three footprints on the floor.

There was a scene that gave the plot a little bit of hope. They hear noises one night and find out that their attic has been opened. The bf goes upstairs and find a picture. The picture ends up being a picture of the gf when she was little and part of the picture is burned off. oOoOoOoOoo. then the plot going back to the same thing. When that scene happened i was thinking, "oh o.... looks like it might start getting interesting". Then all of my hopes were smashed as the plot less plot continued.

I felt very angry when the movie ended because I feel it was a sham and a rip-off. The whole "vote the movie into a theater near you" was a huge hoax they pulled to hype up the movie. I bet you the director and creators of this movie were laughing their asses off as people were blindly walking into the theater and throwing away their hard earned money. They must be profiting madly because these people must have only used about 75k for the creation of this movie.

Also I do not know what is going thru peoples minds that think this was an incredible movie. I read someones comment that this was just as good as the exorcist. These people must be paid bloggers because nobody in their right mind would ever think that about this movie.

To make matters worse I paid 19 dollars to watch this movie with my gf. We both agreed that even Drag me to Hell was better (I think Drag Me To Hell sucks by the way). I gave Drag me to Hell a 3 because it had a few scary/creepy scenes.

If its free then go watch it. If somebody is inviting you, then decline this movie and go watch something else. Trust me you wont regret it.
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1/10
I wont be able to sleep after this!
twoscoops622 October 2009
Warning: Spoilers
That's right! I cant sleep now... because instead of sleeping i am sitting here pondering what could be going thru peoples minds who actually commented good on this movie.

Seriously one star is too much. I wish I could vote in the negatives. In fact I created this account just to write about this movie.

For starters I didn't buy into all the hype... why, because I just recently heard about this movie. I didn't hear anything good or bad just that it existed. Well I enjoy "scary" movies so figured Id check it out.

Nothing at all was scary. I repeat NOTHING at all was scary! I was bored out of my mind 80% of the film. 19% I was angered at the idiot boyfriend or the retarded GF. Seriously, Someone here said that they reacted realistically to the situations. What is wrong with you! The woman acted as if she just wanted to ignore everything and hoped it went away... yet claimed it had been happening since she was 8. They guy on the other hand pretended he had the slightest clue as to what he was doing. "I GOT A PLAN" as he sprinkles baby powder on the floor... WTH did he think that was going to do... show him something/someone was there.. Hadnt that already been established by that point of the "film"? Where was the plan? He threatens the "ghost/demon" what ever the heck it was as if hes going to fight it... Really!? The only time the acting was good is... well never mind because it wasn't ever good. OK at best during the many arguments that took place in the film.

Oh I forgot to mention the other 1% of the film...well that was the "scary" parts. First. The Ouija board scene... scary? NO! Interesting or cool perhaps but far from scary.

Second. Doors slamming... um, perhaps I would've been scared when I was 6 but come on is this really what people find scary about this movie? Third. The girl getting dragged out of bed... perhaps the most scary scene in the movie as well as the best done scene. However it still wasn't really scary... WHY? Because just like every other nite the camera is sped up and then just before anything happens it goes back to normal speed... Completely ruining any chance for suspense or fright... not to mention how it slowly grabs her leg and gently pulls her out of bed...

Fourth, The powder foot steps... so are we afraid of the easter bunny as well? That may be scary in a real life situation, however in the movie it was just lame and boring...

Id enjoyed it more if there were a point to it all.. which I never did see... there was no real story line. Girl haunted by ghost since shes 8 follows her around.. bf pisses ghost off... both end up dead. THE END! Majority of the time were watching them sleep... wth is so scary about that!? Fast forward thru the sleep scene around 3ish each night... ghost does something "spooky" cut to next morning... "OMG look the door closed! Granted if this were to happen to me in real life id need a box of adult diapers however... this is a movie and watching it on film... just isn't scary in the least. Its boring, drawn out (much like my post), comical(and not just the scenes that were meant to be) and well anything BUT scary.

On a positive note... I didn't waste any money on the film =] for that reason and that reason alone I guess it deserves my 1 star.

I've seriously come to the conclusion that all the positive comments left about this movie were made by family or friends of the people involved... I wouldn't be surprised if the director didn't sit down create 100+ accounts and leave all the comments himself as a publicity scam.

I think that a crime has been committed here... and I only hope and pray that no one else has to be victimized by this horrendous film!

oh and to cadillack ... ROFL! your kidding right? To me you sound like a case of the pot calling the kettle black
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1/10
Stay Away! Complete disappointment
cranny041417 October 2009
Warning: Spoilers
We were so excited about this moving coming out - I even "demanded" it on the website. Being fans of the horror genre, and also fans of ghost hunting shows and documentaries, we were pumped to see that it actually was playing in our city.

We went to see this 'movie' today. If there was a way to get our money back, I would probably be first in line. Who ever is writing these reviews that the movie was 'the scariest ever seen' or 'could be compared to classic' must be getting paid to say that crap, or must be on cheap dope... :)

There is only one horror thing about this movie, and that is that it's a horrible waste of time and money. There is no cast, there isn't even opening credits....but to make up for the time usually spent on credit, they instead make you watch 35 min's of coming attraction. When the movie finally started, we were sitting there in a crowded theater, with other anxious, eager people - no doubt waiting to be scared out of seats. We were very disappointed.

This movie and long and boring. There were more funny parts than scary. There is a 'twist' at the end, but it's right at the end. After it, there is a blank screen, and we were left in a audience of people just sitting there for a few seconds then literally everyone started laughing!

Save yourself time, money and pain. Watch the trailer and you will basically see the only 'scary' part of the movie. Again - that 'scary' part is at the end.

Should have stayed home and done laundry like I usually do on Saturday. At least I could have had some fun playing with the dogs while I waited on the dryer.
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2/10
A Big Disappointment And Waste Of My Time
dancemacabre21 October 2009
Warning: Spoilers
Well, I always writing reviews about movie which totally amazed me and I don't waste my time writing about some bad movie. But this movie is exception because I'm must say it's way too popular this days and I had a feel that I must react somehow. On the cover of movie we can see tag lines like 'scariest movie of the year or decade'. I think it's a too funny or some sort of commercial trick.

This movie is only scary for the population under the age of 14 or 16, or if you never watched horror movie or just a few ones, or maybe because you're are too sensitive or fearful. The similar movies like Blair Witch project, Rec, Quarantine etc are hundred times scarier and better. Even the you-tube videos about paranormal things are way too scarier than this.

If you're always hated the stupid paranormal videos from you tube and was angry about your wasting a couple of minutes of your life, then this movie will totally irritate and you will have a will to kill someone. I watched this with no expectation of effects, action, deep screenplay and other things. All I wanted and expecting was a just a little creepy atmosphere and dozen of chilling scenes. The most shocking thing about this movie was a just a huge IMDb rating. Maybe this sounds funny but it was true.

Movie timing is around an 90 minutes, only 2 minutes at total was scary, like dragging girl body from the bed or footsteps of the ghost or what there was.There's some very confusing and unconvincing things in this movie.

After the ghost attacked and wounded a girl (I forgot her name because she was such a bad role), male character rejecting for call help. Oh my god, is he retarded or what? He really thinks that demon or ghost will just passed away and leave them. Not forget mention that dialogs are bored and scenes are too repetitive and there's no tension in it. You just watching when this movie finally finish to see what is whole point of this video. This is not movie in particular, it's just a long video stuff.

I recommend this movie to all people who don't care about waste of their time. Maybe you will enjoy this but I think you are the same as the guy in the movie. I didn't like Blair Witch Project either, but now I fell it's a masterpiece compare to this. Avoid this movie, go and see the trailer and you see it all there is. Cheers.
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1/10
Bored me to tears, possibly one of the worst movies I've ever seen.
blu_pseud27 November 2009
Warning: Spoilers
I was HAUNTED. Haunted by the fact that there was NOTHING scary about this so-called "horror" movie. There is NO suspense build-up, NO plot development, NO insight into the psyche of the characters except useless banter that added no value to the plot. All the paranormal events (eg. Micah finding a picture of a young Katie in the attic, crack appearing on Micah's face in a picture, fire on the Ouija board) are so detached from one another that each serves no purpose in the plot development.

I recommend this movie to people who are into cheap thrills- long period of silence, then a loud bang/ door closing on its own/ screaming/ chandelier shaking/ (insert your own horror movie cliché here).

Otherwise, you will exit the theatre dizzy and dissatisfied. DON'T WASTE YOUR TIME!
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9/10
I have not been this effected by a horror film since I saw The Exorcist over 10 years ago. Paranormal Activity is one of the most harrowing movies I have ever seen
Smells_Like_Cheese26 October 2009
Warning: Spoilers
Not since The Blair Witch Project has a low budget film been so hyped up as Paranormal Activity. The only difference? Paranormal Activity is actually scary! I hate to say this because I know all the hype is turning a lot of people off, but I really have to say that this was an extremely effective film for it's budget. It's the Halloween season, what's a classic thing to do? Tell ghost stories. The thing about ghost stories that makes them so scary is that your mind plays tricks on you and something pitted against you that no Jason or Freddy or Michael could ever make you pee your pants, your imagination. Paranormal Activity takes those bumps, screeches, scratches and shaky noises of the night and makes you wonder what happens when you're asleep. I have to be honest, I could not fall asleep after I saw this film because I live in an apartment that makes a bunch of creepy sounds.

The reason I'm so scared to hype this film up is because I don't think it's going to have the same effect on everyone. The reason why is this is the type of story that just depends on what scares you. If a serial killer chasing the girl with big boobs scares you, this probably won't. If you believe there's more to that shadow you see before fall asleep and that there is something more to the after life, then this movie will definitely give you the creeps. The couple isn't haunted by ghosts, but something a little more scary, a demon that is feeding off their negative energy. Which I honestly think happens in real life and it's the supernatural that scares me. It's the things that require faith that scare me, something that you can't see, but you know exists. That is what terrifies me. From Night #1 in Paranormal Activity to the last night in the three weeks had me scared half to death and the ending that will stay with me for a long time.

Micah and Katie who claims that since her youth, a ghostly entity has haunted her, are a young couple. When strange phenomena occurs such as lights flickering and faucets turning on and off on their own, Katie believes the ghost has followed her to their home. Micah buys a video camera in the hopes of capturing paranormal activity on film. Each night, he leaves the video camera on a tripod in their bedroom to record whatever might be occurring while he and Katie sleep. On the first night Katie's keys are heard being thrown to the floor, where they are found the next morning. After this, Katie calls in Dr. Fredrichs, a psychic who assesses that they are being plagued not by a ghost, but by a demon that is intent on haunting Katie no matter where she goes. The hauntings continue. Micah suggests buying a Ouija board to contact the demon, as he is excited about the possibility of a real haunting, but Katie implores him not to. That night, the couple are awoken by what sounds like footsteps. Suddenly, what sounds like an inhuman roar and a loud bang reverberate from somewhere deep in the house. Micah finally borrows a Ouija board from a friend, infuriating Katie. While the two are arguing outside, a wind blows through the living room and the Ouija board's planchette moves on its own before a small fire erupts and extinguishes on the board. Katie agrees to allow Micah to try one more experiment. Micah leaves baby powder on the floor in the upstairs hallway, hoping the demon will leave tracks. That night, the plan succeeds; they awaken to the sound of footsteps and find three-toed tracks.

Like I said, I don't want to over hype this film, it's something you have to experience for yourself. But if you do see it, see it in the theater, because I think it's part of the experience. I know now that the film has a wider release, there are people who are not scared by this movie are just saying it's a bad film. Now while I understand that it may not have scared you, I think this was still very well made for what little money they had and was very effective. If you lived in my apartment for a night, believe me, you'd know a reason why it scared me. A lot of people have experienced some sort of paranormal activity, just depends on wither you believe it or not. Like I said, a classic ghost story is always about the strange noises you hear or how something moved that you know you put somewhere else. Believe me, a movie has not effected me this much since The Exorcist, Paranormal Activity crawls under your skin and doesn't let go.

9/10
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1/10
What was that?
cdduplessis11 November 2009
Warning: Spoilers
No, seriously, what just happened? Did I just watch a movie? I honestly don't want to waste my time trying to eloquently put forth my problems with this movie, so I'll just present some highlights in bulleted form below:

-Yes, this was very documentary-like, in that I have never been so bored watching a work of fiction before.

-About a quarter of the way in, myself and several other theater-goers were laughing outright at the corniness of the acting, writing, and directing.

-No, it's not immersive. The shaky-cam is, granted, better than some others I've seen (*cough* Cloverfield *cough*) but when you hear a "ghostly" bump and you snort, imagining the crew member jumping up and down in the living room, there's a problem.

-The main characters are in no way sympathy-inspiring. The guy was a antagonistic "tool" (a word I often heard my fellow patrons grumble at the screen when they weren't too busy rolling their eyes), and the woman was in no way endearing, having a grating personality on top of the fact that she is not only the reason for the haunting, but by extension, the subject of blame for the movie even existing.

-Finally, there was not even a semblance of intelligence written into these characters. Granted, you are supposed to have the "Don't go in there/do that" reaction in a horror film, but this went to the point of absurdity. When said reaction becomes the backbone of the film, what you have is simply a series of escalations to an inevitability...which is fine...if you have more than one character perpetrating each escalation...which "Paranormal Activity" did not.
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8/10
A Reminder Why We Love Horror
IAN-Cinemaniac26 October 2009
First of all I must say, living in Belgium, I have the benefit of not being caught up in the hype machine. I'm sure if I were living in the States, I too would be numb to the affects of this film.

I would imagine being in a crowded cinema would take away from the intimacy of the scares. I watched this alone on my couch in the comforts of my own home cinema. I am a huge horror fan, not just a gore hound, though I do enjoy some good gore f/x from time to time, but most of all I love a good scare...which is rather hard to come by. Films that have scared me are, The Changeling, The Innocents, The Ring, Inside (A L'Interior), The Brood, Blair Witch... I'm not easily scared, but given the circumstances in which I watched PARANORMAL ACTIVITY I was quite tense.

This film is a lot like Blair Witch, Cloverfield in the use of the home camera, but the way in which the characters in PARANORMAL approach their situation is rather realistic and believable. The characters are like normal people, not Hollywood types. The acting is fine and the characters are fun and likable. The only thing I had a problem with (as far as believability) was the exorcism footage they looked at on the net.

Maybe I would have been disappointed if I had driven half an hour to the closest English language cinema to see this film when it comes out in December. I love going to the cinema for the great image and sound quality. I wouldn't want to watch AVATAR for the first time at home. But PARANORMAL ACTIVITY is the film to watch at home with as few people and distractions as possible. It's not groundbreaking or amazing, but it works and it's good. I applaud the filmmakers for sending some chills down my spine. Thanks.

Lower those expectations and enjoy the ride.
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8/10
A Theatre Experience I'll Never Forget.
Matt_Layden24 October 2009
A couple decide to document their nights while they sleep, after they hear strange noises that they believe to be a haunting.

I respect this film, for the fact that it was shot for less than 20,000, had absolutely no marketing campaign and has become a huge success based on word of mouth and the audience demanding to see it. If only other studios would follow suit and listen to people demanding to see movies they want to see, maybe there wouldn't be so much crap out there.

Paranormal Activity is shot like Cloverfield, Blair Witch Project, REC, Cannibal Holocaust, etc. If any of those films gave you motion sickness, you might want to skip this one. Half the film is shot while they sleep, so the film is on a tri-pod, the other half is them walking around with it. So if you've never been a fan of those films, skip this one. Second, the film is not as scary as people make it out to be. Instead, it is one creepy and suspenseful film, that seeing in a theatre, only heightened my enjoyment of it.

The audience I went with, all had a collective "Oh My God". I could hear it every time something creepy happened. You could literally feel everyone in the theatre holding their breath every time they went to sleep. Again, if you are the type of person who wants to watch a film and not hear a peep out of anyone else, skip this film.

Now the film itself, shot in one week, small (very small) budget and every penny of it went towards the special effects. The special effects are what sell the film, if you don't buy them, the film will not creep you out. They looked real and impressive enough to push the film into a successful goal, which is to scare people. If you are already afraid of the dark, this film will not help you. Every creek, thump, noise you hear in your house will now have you thinking twice.

Less is more, The Blair Witch Project uses this, as does Paranormal Activity. The two leads, are haunted by a demon, one we never see, only hear. Whenever you go into a horror film, as a kid you would close your eyes in fear. Big mistake, because it's the ears you need to be covering. The sound is what makes you jump, hear nothing, fear nothing. The sound design behind this film is what is scary people, accompanied by the visuals (memorable scenes with the powder and bed sheets).

As the film progresses, the haunting gets worse. I don't want to give anything away, and I urge you to not watch the trailer. I watched the trailer and was waiting for those things to happen, it took away from the general fear. Not knowing what to expect will make this film that much better, that much creepier and that much more entertaining. I didn't expect it to be as funny as it was either, the lead male had some comic relief dialogue, the ease the tension.

The couple are believable, the hand held camera angle works here and the fear will set in. I applaud Paranormal Activity, for not only becoming an unheard of success, but for being one of the creepiest films I've ever seen.

Bravo.
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1/10
Horrible horrible movie
skistruct22 October 2009
Warning: Spoilers
This was one of the worst movies I have ever seen in my life. The scenes were so lame and poorly acted. This movie seriously had not a single scary part. I felt like I was watching bad fake home movies. I cant understand how anyone could watch this movie and like it. Some movies can start off slow and pick it and finish fantastic but this was not one of those movies. From the first minute everything dragged, why bother with the Blair witch type of movies. The acting was horrendous. I laughed so hard when the psychic came to the house and immediately said oh no I cant be here. I mean come on and that stupid fire on the board and then the board didn't have any burn marks. There is no way that should have taken 10,000 to make. It pains me that I sat through it expecting some sort of good ending. Hears something, close the door when you sleep. Bad bad bad bad bad bad bad bad bad bad bad bad bad bad bad horrible movie.
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7/10
Good for What It Is
TravisBickle816928 October 2009
Have not commented on anything in a long time. But after reading all the overly positive "scariest movie of all time" and overly negative "two hours of my life I'll never get back (hour and a half actually)", I had to comment. I heard about this in Entertainment Weekly and was waiting patiently for it to come out in wide distribution. All in all, it's a good movie for what it is. A low budget horror movie using the faux documentary premise. Compared to The Blair Witch Project, where you couldn't see a damn thing to be scared of, and Cloverfield, which just made me nauseous from the jerking camera, this film at least has steady camera work most of the time. If you are a die hard horror movie fan, will this movie terrify you? Probably not, except on a psychological level possibly. The notion of a demon haunting a person as opposed to a haunted house, while nothing truly original in the sense it hasn't been done elsewhere, is still not seen to much in horror (except in possession films), least these days in the days of Saw and Hostel and other crap. There are a few startling moments in the film. They are comparable to a friend sneaking up on you from behind and shaking you. But honestly, that's what I want from a horror movie. To be in suspense and have something shock me and get my heart pumping for a few. I can't remember the last film I saw to do that so at least Paranormal Acivity got my blood flowing a couple times. But mostly its disturbing. Some of the night scenes would be slightly shocking, others would just be creepy to watch. But in each something different happens. In terms of acting, nothing spectacular but hardly as terrible as some are whining about. And while the film suffers from all other faux documentary films with the "'WHY ARE YOU STILL FILMING? TURN THE CAMERA OFF!' 'I WOULD BUT THEN THERE WOULDN'T BE A MOVIE TO SHOW.'" moments, there are actually times when the boyfriend gets yelled at to turn off the camera and does so. And his character is shown from the beginning to be stubborn, frat boyish, and egotistical. So, while his stupidity starts to wear on you, its a slightly more plausible reason for the continual filming than say Blair Witch Projects "THE CAMERA IS ALL I HAVE LEFT!!!" moments. To sum up, is this the scariest film of all time? No. But it is without a doubt the scariest film to be shown in the mainstream theater in the last few years. Its more terrifying then the endless remakes and sequels we have been plagued with. One thing I hope for with all the hype is that horror fans want more genuine shock moments than over the top gore.
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1/10
Absolutely dreadful
IncrediblyDisappointed3 November 2009
Warning: Spoilers
As many people I've seen commenting on this film, I made an IMDb account solely to inform people of how terrible this movie is. It is appalling to me that this movie has gotten the incredible hype that it has - there is not one moment in it that is considered, to me, to be "scary" or even "chilling." I will no doubt have no problem sleeping tonight.

While I felt that, yes, the characters were fairly easy to identify with (who hasn't known the egotistical jock who somehow snags the cute girl with good intentions?), they don't support the inconsistent and shockingly holey storyline. The first... 45? minutes I'd say pass by with little to no action or scares what-so-ever. I suppose the director figured this time allowed you to get to know the characters, but you still leave the movie knowing very little about them. You're introduced briefly to a character "Diane," and you figure at that point that the plot must thicken and you'll delve further into paranormal activities. But, on the contrary, her name is mentioned once and after that you hear no mention of it again. Some time later a photo is found that belonged to Katie when she was 8 years old, but it should have been burned in a freak fire that burned her childhood home down. Again, there's mention of it, and you hear nothing further.

It pains me to say but I must commend Katie and Micha, I did find their acting believable to a certain extent. Together they are more talented and share more chemistry than some famous Hollywood stars who rake in 7-figures a year. Considering that for both of them this was their first movie, that is a huge accomplishment.

Any moment where there is a slight build-up of suspense, the viewers are incredibly let down when the scariest thing you experience is a slamming door or some webbed foot prints on the floor. They have effectively shown two of the most "frightening scenes" (for lack of better words) in the previews, leaving the viewer wishing for more. The creator tries to shed the "fear of the dark" cliché by causing strange things to happen during the day - the key word there being "strange," not "scary" - the theme of this movie it seems. An hour and a half in, I had convinced myself that surely, considering all the attention this movie has received, the ending must be completely shocking? Wrong. The ending is incredibly anti-climatic and leaves very much to be desired.

I have never, ever left a movie angry as I am very easy to entertain, but I left this movie cursing. Any person who has given praise to this video or rated it more than a "1" must clearly be afraid of their own shadow. Please, please save yourself the money and more importantly the time - I can safely say it would be better spent in a field twiddling your thumbs.
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1/10
Complete Garbage
Mr_Poisonality30 October 2009
Warning: Spoilers
"Ghost Dad" was scarier than this drivel. This is perhaps the worst movie it has been my distinct displeasure to see. I cannot believe that this is the No. 1 movie in the US, no wonder the rest of the world hates us. The characters were annoying, foolish and completely unlikeable. When the male lead died I wished I was him so I too could be put out of my misery. The "acting" was terrible. There was no suspense, there were no scares. Although there were a few chuckles, most were unintentional. The movie is all hype and marketing. Perhaps someday I will forgive the friend who dragged me along to see this. I'll obviously never get my time or money back but someone should issue the world an apology for this.
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1/10
a joke
red_circle13 November 2009
Warning: Spoilers
a joke, just a joke,this is not a film ,this is a bad ,big duration youtube video,at least in youtube you can watch another video,in cinema you have paid for it and you are watching that movie. don't watch it ,save your money for something else.

And if you are not going to cinema and downloading movies to your computer and stuff , Don't EVEN DOWNLOAD IT ,save your bandwidth for something else.

Hahaha ,Hollywood in this days just trick people to go and see stupid boring films and then you see them make fortunes.Shame on you Hollywood.People will avenge you for taking them for fools !!!
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10/10
First movie that has ever physically affected me...
ash2k27 September 2009
Warning: Spoilers
Not only is this gem-of-an-indie-film, 'Paranormal Activity' the scariest movie I have ever seen, it is the most horrifying experience I have ever been a part of.

'Paranormal' begins when a young man purchases a camera to record the paranormal phenomena that his live-in girlfriend has been reporting to have been experiencing. His purchase of the camera is out of naivety, and we soon find out he is more interested in electronics than the strange occurrences that seem to be haunting his partner. As the film progresses, the ghostly happenings become more and more apparent and intensify while the hand-held camera documents them and the terror of the young couple.

The genius, center, heart, and terror of this film lie in the realism of the performances. The actors who portray the couple are so convincing and so natural, you feel as if you are watching an actual homemade video. They do not follow the usual "shaky-cam movie" model of acting in which the performances often try so hard to be "real" that they are over-done and come off as a cheap imitation of as what is assumed would be somebody else's reaction to that scenario. Contrary-wise, we believe as an audience, that "Paranormal"'s characters are true to themselves, and the decisions they make and the things they say are true expressions of how the actors themselves would feel if they had been placed in the same situation. Thus, instead of feeling like you are watching actors in a movie portraying someone else, you feel as if are watching two actual people in an actual haunting scenario. You recognize that everything they say and do would be an actual reaction you could imagine yourself giving in response to that scenario. This produces an extremely uneasy effect in which you cannot escape out of their terror-filled world because you feel, yourself, that you are in it. There-in lies the key to this brilliant film.

The other key is the agonizing, yet wonderful uses of suspense and the imagination. The director does not assume his audience is a dull, thoughtless bunch, dependant on gore, sex, and explosions to be thrilled. Rather, in true Hitchcockian fashion, he fully utilizes the concept that imagining the "man with the axe" is far more terrifying than seeing the "man with the axe." We are forced to constantly think about what we just experienced. In some cases, blink, and you will miss something. Subliminal shocks are everywhere, so not only are your conscious senses attacked, your psyche is brutally terrorized. This makes, in one instance, viewing a completely empty room in dead silence for 30 seconds or more turn out to be one of the most horrifying scenes in the entire film. If you think about, just seeing an empty, silent room does not seem scary at all, but there-in lies the genius of this film: That something that simple can scare you down to the deepest core of emotion.

If you've read any of the other reviews for 'Paranormal Activity', you will notice almost all of them mention that a viewer will not be able to sleep after watching it. I will make my review one of them. You will not sleep if you see this movie. Not only is it terrifying, it's thought-provoking. Then when you think about it, you are terrified all over again. Don't believe me? Go ahead, watch it. I dare you.
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What a bunch of bunk!
roger-12126 October 2009
Warning: Spoilers
Who says this is the scariest movie of all time? This film is so annoying, trite and clichéd that it is FAR from the scariest movie of all time, unless it's considered scary that these people would even THINK they had a great idea for a movie.

For instance, the producers of this movie want us to think that these events really happened and were videotaped by the couple as they happened. Please. I can believe that Micah and Katie would set up the camera at night to film things while they slept, but why would they film throughout the day -- while getting ready in the bathroom, or when analyzing the film from the night before? Why, when Micah woke up to find Katie missing and was immediately concerned, would he take time to unfasten the camera and take it with him to find her? She could have been in extreme danger! The only reason is to keep the movie audience "in the loop" as to what is going on. It's scripted! Duh. Even when the camera is left on the tripod, the action is always in front of the camera. For the producers to even think that anyone would begin to believe that this really happened is idiotic.

And how about at the end of the movie, when Michah's body hits the camera? A blow like that would have knocked the camera silly. But the camera stays right there on the flimsy three-leg tripod, ready for the entrance of the demon-possessed Katie, who gives a sinister look at the camera before trying to devour it. Huh? In the first place, why would the "demon" or whatever it was, bring Michah's body back up the stairs? Because the movie audience is there. Because of the restriction of the one camera, the movie audience would have been left out of the action if the demon had left Micah's body downstairs. Obviously scripted.

So, any possibilities of having a GOOD scary movie are ruined since we are confined (by this silly premise of "reality") to one video camera, alternately held by either Micah, Katie, or the tripod. This gimmick is cloying and annoying from the start. And this movie moves SO SLOWLY! My gosh, this was boring.

Anyone watching this movie with half a mind and some critical thinking has to wonder WHY. Why did this demon want Katie? Why didn't it just take Katie at the first (and spare the movie audience the misery of sitting through this rubbish)? Why did the demon want to kill Micah (besides the fact that he was annoying)? Why were things always going wrong with the electronics, like the lights and TV, but the camera always worked? Why did the demon wait for years before haunting Katie again (she remembered it visiting her as a young girl)? Why was there a picture in the attic? Why, when the psychic said that he couldn't stay in the house because he felt the demonic presence so strongly, didn't he take Katie and Micah with him when he left? (Obviously, it takes the demon awhile to catch up with Katie since she hadn't had any encounters with it since she was a little girl.) Why would the demon-possessed Katie lunge at the camera at the end of the movie? This demon had controlled electronics all through the movie without having to use a physical body. If the demon wanted to get rid of the camera, he would have (and SHOULD have) rendered it helpless at the first of the move.

Silly. Stupid. Annoying. Awful.
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