Paranormal Activity 4 (2012)

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Paranormal Activity 3 is, in my opinion, the best in the series of which I am a fan of. Paranormal Activity 4 is the one I least enjoyed of the bunch, although it was still worth it for at least a couple of chills.

They really went with the whole creepy kid angle for this one, and it was interesting to a point, but I grew tired of it as the film went along. A strange kid neighbor stays with the family after his mother is inexplicably taken away via ambulance.

The story is told through web cams set up throughout the house by the teenage daughter and her boyfriend. This led to so many plot holes its ridiculous. Don’t get me wrong, other installments in this series also required a certain degree of suspension of belief, but in Paranormal Activity 4, this is taken to completely higher levels. Especially near the very end of the film. When shit hits the fan, would you be able to continue filming your dire situation – with a laptop no less? Also, the boyfriend all of a sudden doesn’t show up for a couple of days, even after they have this whole set up with the cameras in the house due to suspicion of haunted presence(s). A couple of curious teenagers like that would review the video footage daily and discover what was actually going on a lot faster than the way things unfolded in this flick.

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I understand that making characters dumb on purpose sometimes is a ploy used to make audiences more frightened, but that is a cheap tactic, and it sure felt cheap in this one. Don’t even get me started on how dumb the parents in this movie were made to be. They easily rival the dumbest parents ever put on film, EVER. Even after unexplained creepy shit happens to them directly, they somehow ignore their predicament and move on as if all is well.

As a fan of the series, I still gladly watched it, and even seeing it at the cinema was worth it. However, Paranormal Activity 4 was disappointing on many levels. Up to this point this has been an outstanding franchise, in my view. Unfortunately, I get the feeling this is headed towards SAW territory, where all subsequent sequels become nothing but a cash-grab leading up to the Halloween season.

I still guardedly recommend this one – just lower your expectations heading in. The commercials on TV with the people in theatres screaming their asses off are hilarious, though. Rookies.

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About jpthorn

If you would like to submit books or films for review, e-mail me at thehorrorbooth@gmail.com
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8 Responses to Paranormal Activity 4 (2012)

  1. theipc says:

    This was “good” but totally disappointing after the awesome 3. I agree 100% with what you wrote above.

    • jpthorn says:

      The friend I went to see it with and I were discussing how even Grave Encounters was surprisingly better in our opinion than this one. I might watch Grave Encounters 2 soon.

  2. Good. Now I don’t feel bad for not seeing it!

  3. This was one of the first horror movies I saw in the theater too. It was either this one or NOES 4; they both came out in ’88 and that was the year we got a theater here in town. Good memories.

  4. mistylayne says:

    I so hate this series. My friend’s kid made me watch the first 3 with her. I’m trying to talk her out out of watching the 4th. 😉

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