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49 of 58 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Scary but it also offers more to film fans than just the odd jump
I like this film. Sure, it delivers scares, but I enjoyed other elements of this film besides all the 'paranormal activity'. What I really loved was the home life.

I thought the actors were great and it really did feel real. For once this was a 'found footage film' that made me feel like I really was genuinely watching someone's home movies. The couple seemed...
Published on 28 Sept. 2010 by The Truth

versus
2.0 out of 5 stars nice idea, poorly executed
On paper this film had a lot of potential. What we should have got was a cross between The Amityville Horror and The Blair Witch Project. In the case of the former, a family experienced supernatural phenomena that became so bad they were forced to flee their home. They subsequently sold their story, but people were sceptical because there was no evidence.

Fast...
Published on 27 Sept. 2011 by scarecrow


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49 of 58 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Scary but it also offers more to film fans than just the odd jump, 28 Sept. 2010
By 
The Truth "How it is" (UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Paranormal Activity [DVD] (DVD)
I like this film. Sure, it delivers scares, but I enjoyed other elements of this film besides all the 'paranormal activity'. What I really loved was the home life.

I thought the actors were great and it really did feel real. For once this was a 'found footage film' that made me feel like I really was genuinely watching someone's home movies. The couple seemed very real and natural together and the voyeur in me really enjoyed watching their home life, complete with goofy husband jokes - which were, as always, insensitive and inappropriate. Being a guy I could really relate to this, and loved his humour and recognised dynamics between the pair.

I thought this film was really quite clever. It's always refreshing seeing low budget films that become successes. They nearly always offer something new, for the simple reason that a lack of money forces directors & crew to come up with new, inventive and imaginative ways to solve problems or create effects when they can't just throw money at the problem. In short, it stops film makers being lazy and boost originality and creativity. Paranormal Activity is a perfect example of this.

The jumps, scares and horror, weren't/wasn't relentless, but the film certainly had its moments, with 1 or 2 scenes - actually make that 3 or 4 - being genuinely creepy and sending shivers up my spine. Only one scene really made me jump out my seat, but the rest, as I said, certainly had the shiver factor.

They're making a Paranormal Activity 2 now, in fact I think it's out soon, and it will really interesting to see what's that like and how they approach that. I'm really not sure what type of film it will be, but I hope it's on a par with this. Both my flat mate and I really enjoyed it and Dave - my 6''2' Geordie flat mate - even had nightmares the following night. But then again the film really did seem to freak him out for some reason.

I'd give this an 8 out of 10 as a film to watch, but a 9 our of 10 as an example of good film making.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Slow, shady and minimalistic in its approach - but pretty darn efficient and towards the end really scary!, 22 Mar. 2013
By 
Darth Maciek "Darth Maciek" (Darth Maciek is out there...) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Paranormal Activity [DVD] (DVD)
As probably almost everybody knows, this is a "found footage" film, about two young people who decide to document on tape their life in a supposedly haunted house. And I must say that I liked it a lot.

This film was made on a microscopic budget of 15.000 (yes, fifteen thousand) USD. Everything occurs inside just one house and its garden. There are only three actors, all totally unknown to me (and the third one appears only briefly). The soundtrack is for all practical purposes absent - and that actually is a good thing, as the mixture of silence and some white noise is in itself pretty creepy. Lights are mostly toned down (and a good thing too!) and the decorations are just those of a regular house. And yet, it ultimately made 300 million USD worldwide - and frankly, once you see it, you will understand why.

I am absolutely not saying anything about the plot, on purpose. Just be prepared to a long, very long and slow, very slow beginning - for those who do not like this kind of things, it is better to abstain from watching "Paranormal Activity". This beginning is however necessary, because the whole idea behind this movie was a long and slow escalation, a little like in Ravel's "Bolero". Another image I had in mind when watching "Paranormal Activity" was that of a lion slowly stalking its prey - it walks all the time very slowly but once it has got near enough, every next small step greatly diminishes prey's chances to survive - until the inevitable final leap, very brief but absolutely deadly...

Depending on your mood and on your personal taste, this is a film as easy to love as it is to hate. I personally liked it and my wife liked it too - albeit towards the end she tended to cover her face more and more with the blanket, until only one (wide open) eye was left to make peek-a-BOO...))) Maybe the best thing is just to watch it and make your own mind. Enjoy!
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2.0 out of 5 stars nice idea, poorly executed, 27 Sept. 2011
By 
scarecrow (Doncaster, UK) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Paranormal Activity [DVD] (DVD)
On paper this film had a lot of potential. What we should have got was a cross between The Amityville Horror and The Blair Witch Project. In the case of the former, a family experienced supernatural phenomena that became so bad they were forced to flee their home. They subsequently sold their story, but people were sceptical because there was no evidence.

Fast forward forty years. A young couple are experiencing some kind of paranormal activity so the bloke decides to buy a high quality camcorder in the hope of capturing some of the activity on film.

For me the scariest part of the film was when he set the camera up in the bedroom on the first night, so that it showed not only the couple in bed, but also looked out through the bedroom door, (which they always kept open), onto the landing. If some kind of apparition had appeared on the landing, or in the reflection when he was filming next to mirrors, then I'd have cr*pped myself.

Unfortunately, however, two things let the film down big time. Firstly, all of the supernatural phenomena that we experience consists either of noises, or of objects moving of their own volition. We never see any kind of apparition at all. Secondly, although young Americans might have been able to identify with this couple, speaking as a middle aged Brit, I found them neither believable, nor particularly likeable, especially the bloke who came across as a bit of an ****hole.

Admittedly, the last few seconds were quite shocking, but I'm afraid by then it was a case of way too little, way too late. A wasted opportunity.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Paranormal Activity, 17 Nov. 2010
I'm generally disappointed by these handheld camera movies of "found footage". I found both Blair Witch and Cloverfield quite underwhelming and the shaky camerawork annoyed me. Paranormal Activity addresses the shaky camera issue to a degree. Most of the time the camera is stationary and simply watching them sleep. It's set in such a position that I found myself scouring the screen watching for something to happen. One second I was staring at the door, the next I was checking to see if anything happened on the other side of the room. This is one of the major strengths of the film because even when nothing is happening you can find yourself engaged by it.
It does have its weaknesses of course. I didn't care that much for the two main characters but that's usually the case with these types of films.
To summarise, although this is by no means a great film that I would watch over and over, I really can't see how they could have done it any better. It's a triumph for low budget innovative film making.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Unearthly Footprints In Your Bedroom - Move House Today., 22 Jan. 2015
By 
Mr. David Stanton (London, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Paranormal Activity [DVD] (DVD)
I saw this at the cinema on my own.
The cleverness of this movie is a slow build up of activity and the mundane
lifestyle of the characters.
It just creeps up on you, as you keep expecting the usual extravagant special
effects to kick in, but it doesn't.
The ending still scares the s*** out of me even though I've only seen that once.
I've watched the movie a few times on terrestrial TV, but always switch off or change
channel before that ending arrives.
For a horror / sci-fi junky like me who's seen tons of scary monster/ghosty/demon
films or documentaries it takes something special to unnerve me.
I do sleep soundly at night, especially since I bought a nice big crucifix for my bedroom
from amazon.
If anyone who reads this decides to see this first of the P-A franchise,
watch it with your friends (make sure one of them is a priest).
Good Luck !
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4.0 out of 5 stars TERRIFYING!, 26 Feb. 2011
By 
G. Stephenson - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Paranormal Activity [DVD] (DVD)
PARANORMAL ACTIVITY is definately one of the scariest horror films ever!

I thought it would be dull when i discovered that the whole film was filmed by the people because it was different to any other film i'd seen, but i soon got into it and came to respect it. IT FREAKED ME OUT the whole way through! Admittedly i will probably sleep tonight but whilst i was watching it i was sweating like hell! The haunting stuff got ever so slightly reppetitive but it kept you on the edge of your seat still. I'll just say you masy think you know where the story is going but the end will just blow your mind! Dont watch the alternative endings because they are rubbish, watch the real one. I was so startled i spilled my lemonade all over myself!

It is just awesome and i am definately going to watch it PARANORMAL ACTIVITY 2 any day now!

WATCH IT RIGHT NOW!

DONT WATCH IT ALONE!
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3.0 out of 5 stars Everyday inactivity, 21 Oct. 2013
This review is from: Paranormal Activity [DVD] (DVD)
PARANORMAL ACTIVITY is a bit of a mixed bag. At its best it deftly illustrates how the implied can be more effective that the explicit, but at its worst it suffers from poor pacing and a thin plot line. Nothing much happens in the first 70 minutes apart from a fair amount of bickering between the (often annoying) two main leads. Then, in the final reel, it suddenly becomes truly creepy, and the ending, although somewhat obvious, will bring you out in goosebumps. It's far more effective than The Blair Witch Project (which I found very dull) but would have benefited from a more fully developed script. Oh, and why don't they immediately turn the lights on when things get scary? I know I would.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Disturbing, 17 Jun. 2011
This review is from: Paranormal Activity [DVD] (DVD)
I loaned this film from my sister. She said it started off slow, so I wasn't expecting much.

Yes, it's a slow start, but I quickly got into it.

I found the last 20 minutes the most disturbing and I was gripped to my seat. It didn't affect my husband at all!!!

I think the fact that things like this could actually happen makes it all the more frightening.

I haven't seen a film in a long time that has made me put all the lights on before going to bed, but this one did!!!

If you get freaked out easily, then I would say, do not watch this alone.

Not sure I could take watching the second one.

Enjoy!!
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Unsettling, 1 Nov. 2010
By 
Jeffrey M. Black "jblack437" (Stockport) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Paranormal Activity [DVD] (DVD)
If you come to this film expecting special effects and gory set-pieces, you're going to be disappointed. If you like a good, subtle ghost story and have an attention span, prepare to be creeped out.

The bar is set low at the beginning, with just bumps and creaking and scary stories about a demon following Katie around. Apart from Micah and Katie, there are only two other characters. One of these is a psychic whose clear apprehension at what he can sense ramps up the tension.

The film homes in on a universal fear we've all had at one point: what might be happening in the dark when we are sleeping? The simple night vision footage of their bedroom from a stationary camera gets progressively more worrying. Because you sit there waiting for the merest bump in the night, your nerves are on edge. And when something undeniably demonic actually does happen, you're played like a highly strung piano.

I watched it on my own, in an empty flat on Halloween. If I delayed putting the light out in my bedroom that night, it was only because I wanted to read a little longer. Honest.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Reverse psychology, 31 July 2010
By 
The usual suspect (2nd aisle on the right, top shelf) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
If people tell people something is scary and the media tell us it is scary, we often end up watching it with the "no matter what, this isn't going to scare me just because 'they' tell me it will" attitude.
I guess I'm lucky and I didn't read too much into the media hype nor did I read the reviews on Amazon before seeing PA. As a result, I like to think it gave me much more of a scare - I didn't really know too much about what to expect.
Enviroment is very important. Watch it in a dark room with good audio to get the shiver down the spine effect. Empty house even better.
I see some reviewers were expecting a story???

I got it on Blu-Ray simply because it was cheap and for me, the audio is the most important aspect of the movie. The DTS-HD isn't fully exercised but it still does a pretty good job with things that go bump in the night. The first proper bump, night 5(?), is a good one!
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Paranormal Activity [DVD]
Paranormal Activity [DVD] by Oren Peli (DVD - 2010)
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