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Paranormal Activity (2007) reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day 25

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Paranormal Activity (2007) reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day 25

Old 10-25-09, 09:01 AM
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Paranormal Activity (2007) reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day 25



IMDB link for Paranormal Activity (2007)

Selection made by group malaise.

These "2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day #" threads are for the discussion of the films in the 31 Films in 31 Days subset.

General discussion on the 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge goes here, your list for the Challenge goes here.

The plan is for everyone to watch this film on the October day in the thread title, and to start discussing it the morning of the following day. You may start discussion early if you want, but the preferred plan is for this to be as much of a group exercise as possible, with all of us viewing it "together" and discussing after.

Of course, you are totally encouraged to participate in these threads even if you haven't watched the movie on the designated day. Even if you haven't watched it in years, or are not participating in the Horror Challenge, please feel free to chime in.

Spoiler tags will not be needed, as it will be expected that anyone here has seen the film.

Do not read this thread if you have not seen the film, unless you don't mind the ending being spoiled for you.
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Old 10-25-09, 09:04 AM
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Re: Paranormal Activity (2007) reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day

Major discussion here in our own Movie subforum.
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Old 10-26-09, 12:10 AM
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Re: Paranormal Activity (2007) reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day

I pretty much hated this one. Figures that it would beat one of the best Saw releases to date at the box-office. Hype is all there is.
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Old 10-27-09, 07:25 PM
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Re: Paranormal Activity (2007) reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day

I loved it. Ignore the hype, as one should do with any movie.

A lot of people complained about the acting, or conversations that didn't take place, but the later complaint especially means you're missing the whole point of the experience.

I viewed this as a normal couple's home movies, not professional actors, a normal Joe and Mary schmoe. The movies were small pieces of their days as they tried to deal with the haunting. Every conversation didn't have to be, and indeed shouldn't be, in the film.

So I guess I think you have to view it as a documentary, consisting of partial footage of events.

Anyway, more later maybe in the main thread. Saw it the same day as Saw VI, and this blows away all the Saw films combined imho.
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Old 10-28-09, 02:23 AM
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Re: Paranormal Activity (2007) reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day

Originally Posted by Trevor View Post
I viewed this as a normal couple's home movies, not professional actors, a normal Joe and Mary schmoe. The movies were small pieces of their days as they tried to deal with the haunting. Every conversation didn't have to be, and indeed shouldn't be, in the film.

So I guess I think you have to view it as a documentary, consisting of partial footage of events.

Anyway, more later maybe in the main thread. Saw it the same day as Saw VI, and this blows away all the Saw films combined imho.
The acting really would have to be strong to make this feel like a documentary. It felt more like a couple trying to make a cheapo horror flick. The film is just tiresome to me.

Saw VI was spot-on. Funny, violent...and it had a great little attack on corporate values. It's too easy to knock this series which has gotten better since Part IV, IMO. The original is still the creepiest and most intense, but how can you not enjoy the inventiness of the kill scenes. Over-the-top certainly, but it delivers more than the "boo" what just happened simplicity of Paranormal Activity which I think will be largely forgotten down the road, like its counterpart...The Blair Witch Project.
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Old 10-28-09, 07:34 AM
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Re: Paranormal Activity (2007) reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day

Loved the hell out of this. At the very least it's the best horror film I've seen since Haute Tension. I was hoping it would beat the new Saw at the BO. If I want inventive kills in a torture flick, I'll stick with the Hostel movies. The blood bath from the second trounces anything Saw has come up with.

Anyway, The Blair Witch Project has been largely forgotten? News to me.

Last edited by J. Farley; 10-28-09 at 07:49 AM.
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Old 10-28-09, 08:25 AM
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Re: Paranormal Activity (2007) reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day

I really liked this movie as well, and it was a fun movie theater experience when I went. The people in the audience were clearly into the film and screaming at the right parts. I know that this is a movie that not everyone will like, just because of its style and crowd pleasing word of mouth. It has received so many comparisons to Blair Witch Project, but I think it's a better movie than Blair Witch. I got more emotionally invested in these characters. I also don't get any criticisms about the acting in this film. I thought it was really strong, very naturalistic. I know people like this couple; their interactions rang very familiar to me.

And since we seem to be turning this into a Saw discussion as well, I'm not a fan of the series. I've seen the first 4, and while I thought the first one was unintentionally hilarious as hell, the others I find pretty boring for the most part.
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Old 10-29-09, 02:02 PM
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Re: Paranormal Activity (2007) reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day

I generally liked the movie, except that I really did not like the actor that played Micah - he was quite annoying. As for the camera movement, I had no problem with 'Cloverfield' a little with 'Blair Witch' but this one really...really got me highly nauseous - I had to look away alot during the second half of the movie in hopes of making the feeling go away.
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Old 10-29-09, 04:02 PM
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Re: Paranormal Activity (2007) reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day

Except for the "thud" ending (take that, anyway you want) I found the film generally boring. I'll concede that the couple were at times fascinating to watch but the pacing and editing of the film didn't motivate me to have any "jump" moments. I'm am happy that it didn't concede to utilizing cheap "bloody effects" or so called "viseral elements" ie: those damned SAW movies but I found it fascinating that the R rating was mainly for the sprinkle of a few "f" bombs scattered through-out the film. (Imagine what a PG-13 rating would have captured for audiences?). I'd give it a fair rating, but nothing I'd tell my neighbor to run out to see. Maybe I've become a bit jaded.
The same thing occurred when I ventured out to see Sam Raimi's DRAG ME TO HELL, and I'm a big Raimi fan! (I'm in my mid-fifties, could it be this catered to a more younger crowd?)
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Old 10-29-09, 04:06 PM
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Re: Paranormal Activity (2007) reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day

Copying this from the movie subforum thread.

I wonder if the like it/hate it disparity has a strong corelation to one's belief in the supernatural?

Perhaps a poll?
  • believe in demons / hated the film
  • believe in demons / loved the film
  • don't believe in demons / hated the film
  • don't believe in demons / loved the film
  • believe Twikoff is a demon
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Old 10-29-09, 06:46 PM
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Re: Paranormal Activity (2007) reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day

Originally Posted by Trevor View Post
Copying this from the movie subforum thread.

I wonder if the like it/hate it disparity has a strong corelation to one's belief in the supernatural?

Perhaps a poll?
  • believe in demons / hated the film
  • believe in demons / loved the film
  • don't believe in demons / hated the film
  • don't believe in demons / loved the film
  • believe Twikoff is a demon
Meh, I'm an athiest and do not believe in anything supernatural and I loved this movie. I don't need to believe in something in roder for me to buy it as part of the story; I don't believe in talking lions, but I always cry at The Lion King.
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Old 10-29-09, 06:51 PM
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Re: Paranormal Activity (2007) reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day

^ Agreed. I don't think that has anything to do with it at all. Movies ask us to believe a lot of things that we don't believe in. It's all in the storytelling.
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Old 11-01-09, 09:46 AM
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Re: Paranormal Activity (2007) reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day

Originally Posted by clckworang View Post
^ Agreed. I don't think that has anything to do with it at all. Movies ask us to believe a lot of things that we don't believe in. It's all in the storytelling.
I brought it up because I'm pretty sure that studies show that more believers are scared by The Exorcist than non-believers. Imagine that tendency carries over to all films involving the supernatural.

Definitely agree that storytelling is the key ingredient to a good film. Most of my favorite films are of a 'fantastic' nature, and I don't believe that most of them are true/possible.
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