Thursday, December 3, 2009

Review: Paranormal Activity


Quick Plot: A man buys a camera to film the events that have been disturbing his wife's sleep just as the events start to escalate.

That's all I'm prepared to write at this point plot wise, since I don't want people being annoyed I spoiled any surprises for them.

I saw it on my own in an almost empty cinema, knowing next to nothing about it. I recommend you do the same.

Don't read any further if you want to keep your experience pure.

How I wish a movie like Paranormal Activity had existed when I was 14 or 15 and trying to get girls interested in a spot of cuddling.

Back then I don't really remember any truly scary or creepy films with a 15 certificate all that stuff ended up with an 18 rating because, frankly, it were a different world then, chick. The kids of today will have girls jumping at them during this. So long as they're not expecting gore...

In this age of lazy gore filled, 18 rated torture fests I hadn't really expected something like Paranormal Activity to be successful unless it could keep its word of mouth large and its reviews good. I'm happy to be part of the group of reviewers who liked it.

I gather it cost next to nothing to make. A mere $15,000 if reports are to be believed. And has made over $100 Mill. Proof that there is a market out there for films that are just plain good.

Compared to the return on investment (artistic or monetary) of an expensive film like, say, Twilight, or even more acutely, an incredibly expensive film like 2012, the importance of that fact cannot, in my view be overstated.

Suffice to say it achieves a lot with very little and while not destined to set the world on fire, it gets the job done fantastically well. I'll probably write about its strengths and weaknesses in a couple of weeks once my mates have all seen it.

Will you like it as much as I did? It's tough to say.

Your enjoyment will almost certainly be proportional to how much you can get into the spirit of the thing and accept its premise. After the end there was a genuine moment of camaraderie between the six or seven people who were in the cinema at 14:40 on a Thursday to see it - we'd shared an almost interactive experience since you have to bring a lot to this film with you to fill in the scares and I was glad I'd seen it alone (like I did The Blair Witch Project, Ringu etc).

It's a very cool movie, and I was very impressed.


P.S. I have one very minor spoiler.... so don't read below unless you're prepared to know something!!! DON'T!!!

The very last moment (by which I mean the last second, not the last sequence) is a bit shit and not needed, but it's not a dealbreaker.

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