Alright, I figured this site could be better served providing more than just posts about my show, and I figure what better thing to provide than movie reviews. I do love movies , and I watch a fucking lot of them. So lets start this off right here, with the movie I watched most recently.
Paranormal Activity 3.
I want to preface this by saying that I love Paranormal Acitivty. I feel like it was one of the most amazing low-budget horror movie success stories in the last 10+ years. A tiny movie that was shot in 10 days on a shoestring budget (for those of you unsure, thats around $15,000. For most films now ‘low budget’ refers to at least 1 million dollars) and in the directors house. When it was finally released it made 9 million dollars in the first WEEK and it was playing in less than 200 theatres. Any of my film nerd friends reading this will know that that is an amazing bit of trivia.
The first time I watched PA 1, I had heard about it, and managed to get myself a copy of the festival version of the movie, which if you wondered DOES have an alternate ending that I think was included on the DVD release. Anyways, I watched it on my laptop and proceeded to have the shit scared out of me. It felt like I was watching one of those YouTube videos that you and your friends play in the dark to try and freak each other out. You know you do. It felt, well, real.
When I heard that the sequel was coming out, I was extraordinarily skeptical, but at the same time excited to have that same feeling of fear and paranoia that the first one had instilled in me. So, this time I had to see it in theatres. Turns out, with the right crowd, a horror movie in theatres can be one of the most intense and stressful things to do. Which is what I found with Paranormal Activity 2. The first time the night vision cameras kicked on, the entire theatre went silent. The kind of silent that you only get when you watch a movie alone. When nothing happened, the entire theatre let out a collective sigh of relief. It was easily one of the best horror crowds I’ve ever had in theatres. Especially during a certain day-light scare that NO ONE expected.
Now, on to the 3rd movie.
This movie takes place at the beginning, set in the 80s. It opens with a scene set closer to PA2, before baby Hunter was born in which Katie brings a box of old tapes to her sister’s house to store in their basement. Though, god only knows why, I remember Micah’s house being pretty impressive and huge. Anyway, that aside, it cuts to a scene directly from PA2, where Kristy’s house is broken in to and ransacked, there is a bit of an extra “ohhh!” moment when Kristy’s husband is down in the basement and says “Those tapes Katie left are gone”, which he didn’t say in the original cut of the movie, but I digress.
Then, the we see that familiar old VHS static and the movie starts. Its Katie’s birthday, and things seem pretty good. We meet her mother, Julie (Lauren Bittner), and her mother’s boyfriend Dennis (Christopher Nicholas Smith). All seems good, of course. Though as it always is in horror movies that involve children, the children start to creep us the fuck out right away. Oh, we also meet Kristy and Katie’s grandmother right near the beginning. That’s basically all I want to say about the plot because if I really start in I will give more away than I want to. I will say though, that Dennis owns a business where he films and edits wedding videos, thus justifying the cameras and editing equipment in the home. Also, film geeks, watch this movie and check out the crazy gear he is editing on. God bless the 80s.
I wanted to say something about the crowd during this movie, but I think that I am going to write a seperate article about movie crowds, and in particular horror movie crowds. I feel that there is something to be said there. So look for that!
All in all, I enjoyed the movie. It was eerie, and at some points down-right fucking stressful and terrifying. One of the cameras in the house is set up on an old oscillating fan, which as it turns out, creates some of the most unpleasant and gut -wrenching tension just by turning back and fourth SLOWWWWWWWWWWWWWWLY and covering two seperate rooms of the house. I feel like that alone was worth maybe a cinematography nod at the Oscars this year. Anyone who has seen this movie knows what I am talking about, and please do comment to let me know if you agree. Also, in this one we get a lot of context (as we did in PA2) for the first movie. We really get into these girls (insane) pasts and see that what happened to Micah was really always going to happen. He was fucked from day one. I would say, that if you are in to these found-footage movies, like I am, and you liked the first two go and see this movie. Even if PA2 was so-so in your books, check out this movie. Just watch it properly. In the dark, be it at the theatre or at home. Don’t watch it in the middle of the day with the lights on and 10 of your loudest friends over.
Also, I just have to speak to the trailer for this movie. If you didn’t like the trailer, you probably will enjoy the movie. The events in the trailer either don’t happen at all or happen completely differently than they appear to. Such a neat and unique way of toying with audience expectations and I fucking love the movie even more as a result.
You will definitely get more out of it if you watch it properly. So go enjoy this movie!
If you’re into this kind of movie, I would suggest these ones as prime watching: The Blair Witch Project, [REC], The Last Exorcism, & Behind The Mask: The Rise Of Leslie Vernon.
What did you guys think of PA3? What are your favorite found-footage movies? Leave comments below! I read, and reply to all of them!