Thursday, 21 October 2010

Paranormal Activity 2 - aka the Modern Day Ghost Train

Remember a year ago when that film came out that scared the crap out of everyone? Paranormal Activity was this decade's Blair Witch Project: a film that cost nothing, made millions, and had a really disappointing ending.

Paranormal Activity, the film that made everyone 'ZOMG!'

Much like Blair Witch, the inevitable sequel is with us just 12 months later. But unlike Book of Shadows, Paranormal Activity 2 is watchable and... actually quite scary. Despite watching the film in what seemed like particularly noisy classroom (Vue sucks ass btw), PA2 provided scares in the plenty - but little else.

Watching the first half you'd be forgiven for thinking you were watching exactly the same movie - same ol' cheeky demon antics: pans falling off hooks, pool hoovers climbing walls. Those pesky demons! Then the film goes into OVERDRIVE. The 20,000% increase in budget (I'm not kidding) means the movie is a lot more action-packed, with people being flung around like rag dolls in a tornado. It's impatience for scares makes the film feel a lot more relentless, as those dreaded night scenes come around a lot quicker this time.

Expect a lot of creaky door action.

It's far from a perfect horror movie, however, as the plot seems more like an afterthought. It somehow ties in as a prequel to the first movie, which works pretty well if you ignore most reasonable logic. And the 'inexplicable filming everything' motif makes everything feel a little contrived. But then again, Paranormal Activity 2 isn't a movie in the conventional sense of the word. It's an experience, much like a fairground ride. Questioning the plot feels like questioning the reasons for having corkscrews on a rollercoaster.

So for all intensive purposes, it's a 5 star ride but a 3 star movie.

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