Dir: Oren Peli
Seen: October 17, 2009 at AMC
Reason to see: Looked freaking scary!
Paranormal Activity had a lot of buzz surrounding it before it was even in regular release. The indie film pulled a smart and successful manuever of having a series of midnight screenings and a promise to the fans of if it hit 1,000,000 demands on it's website that it would come out in regular release, and the next weekend it did just that.
Although it is shown as vérité style from the perspective of a couple taping their home life in attempt to uncover the source of unexplained and/or unbelieved happenings, this is not mumblecore and it does not fall into some of the bad habits found footage film can. It has, dare I say it, a plot and fantastic acting. It is a film after all, even if using a unique technique. But, what really holds the film together is the characters and the relationship between the couple. Yes, we are hear to be scared and wonder what the heck is going on, jump out of our seats and believe the unbelievable. But that can't happen unless they establish the believable - the story, the characters, their actions in this film are all believable and congruous. Sounds boring but it's the basics to make it all work. If you don't believe, you won't be scared. And we want to be scared - that's the point of a horror movie, isn't it? And it is scary. Freaking scary. It's an amazing film, and proof that it can be done and it doesn't even need a huge budget. Bravo.
Shannon's Overall View:
I loved it, in a scary way!
I'll watch it again
I recommend to horror fans, especially of the paranormal/supernatural variety!
15 minutes of preshow including 6 previews: 2012, Shutter Island, The Lovely Bones, The Fourth Kind, The Road and I Hope they Serve Beer in Hell
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© Shannon Ridler, 2009