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Stinson’s Movie Review: Paranormal Activity 3

Tyler Stinson

Staff Writer 

The biggest horror movie of the year hit the box office with a bang, becoming the highest-grossing horror movie opener of all time. But does the third installment of Paranormal Activity live up to the hype? The answer is yes. With heart-stopping scares, it gives the audience exactly the horror thrill they wanted.

Paranormal Activity is all about the experience of going to a movie theater. It thrives off how everybody in the theater reacts, and even though it is still extremely frightening to watch at home, there is nothing like viewing it with the booming sound and big screen. It feeds off the audience, and watching it in a theater with a good amount of people is the only way to go.

The movie connects the past two films by taking us back in time to when the sisters, Katie and Kristi, were little girls. The concept of all three films has to do with homemade videos being put up in the house to capture strange experiences that have been occurring. I could criticize aspects of the movie like poor acting, low budget, short run time and weak story, but all of these things are the attributes that make Paranormal Activity what it is.

The poor acting works for the movie, making it seem like a home movie, like you’re peeking into a normal household. Same goes for the low budget. If they had a lot of money to work with, I’m afraid it just wouldn’t be the same. The story is a toss-up; you can choose to care about it, or you can go through the whole movie blind and just enjoy being frightened.

As for the 84-minute run time, “Paranormal” packs a short punch and avoids a mistake many horror movies fall victim to, an overbearingly long and annoying story that brings you to just a few scary moments.

A truly innovative aspect of all three of the “Paranormal” movies is the camera work. Starting with the first movie, it has evolved and gotten enhanced with Paranormal Activity 3 being the best yet. Since the movie is set in 1988, the creators of the movie had a difficult task of making the cameras even better and freakier than in the first two. They passed with flying colors, setting up the single most spine-chilling camera view in the whole series. When the camera came on screen it had everybody in the audience taking a deep breath as they all simultaneously thought, “Not this again.”

Paranormal Activity 3 delivered on the only job it has expected to do: it scared the heck out of me. If you thought the first two were terrifying, remember there is nothing more intense than creepy children.  So if you claim to be a fan of scary movies, there is no excuse for missing the supernatural experience that is Paranormal Activity 3.

Tyler Stinson may be reached at tstinson@springfieldcollege.edu

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