Rent Paranormal Activity (2007)

3.2 of 5 from 279 ratings
1h 23min
Rent Paranormal Activity Online DVD & Blu-ray Rental
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  • Available formats
Synopsis:
This is the story of Katie and Micah, a carefree couple who become haunted by an unseen presence in their house. They decide to investigate the increasingly bizarre and escalating intrusions by setting up a video camera to capture evidence of the demonic presence in their house, only to find much more that they ever imagined.
Actors:
, , , , , Crystal Cartwright, ,
Directors:
Writers:
Oren Peli
Studio:
Icon
Genres:
Horror, Thrillers
BBFC:
Release Date:
22/03/2010
Run Time:
83 minutes
Languages:
English
Subtitles:
English Hard of Hearing
DVD Regions:
Region 2
Formats:
Pal
Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen 1.78:1 / 16:9
Colour:
Colour
Bonus:
  • Alternate ending
  • Audio commentary by writer and director Oren Peli
  • "Film your own Paranormal Activity" short films
  • Introduction by director Oren Peli
BBFC:
Release Date:
22/03/2010
Run Time:
86 minutes
Bonus:
  • Alternate ending
  • Audio commentary by writer and director Oren Peli
  • "Film your own Paranormal Activity" short films
  • Introduction by director Oren Peli

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Reviews (4) of Paranormal Activity

What a let-down! - Paranormal Activity review by Mehitabel

Spoiler Alert
24/03/2011

I fell for the hype. I was expecting something truly unsettling and frightening.. and got a rather dull domestic documentary. I'm all for scares being hinted at rather than spelled out, and I don't like loads of jump-moments, they get tiring, but there's only so long you can go on believing something's about to happen.. The handheld shaky-camera/amateur thing is now a cliché and to expect it to compensate for lack of fleshed out characters, plot and real scares is feeble. Perhaps it would have helped if the couple hadn't been so uninteresting..

The only reason I can think of to watch this is just to say you have. But I suppose that was the point of all the hype in the first place..

0 out of 1 members found this review helpful.

Spoilers follow ... - Paranormal Activity review by NP

Spoiler Alert
19/05/2017

The effects of ‘The Blair Witch Project (1999)’ should never be underestimated in my view. With it came to many peoples’ attention a whole new way of telling (mainly horror) stories: found footage. It was a phenomena, a huge low-budget hit. The inevitable backlash from the fickle public mainly whinged about the effects of ‘shaky’ webcam making the delicate souls in the audience feel queasy. Imagine then, if a film could be told using static security cameras endlessly filming every room in a haunted house. Perfect! For a limited time, it was certainly very effective.

Katie and Micah live in the unlikeliest haunted house. No dank corridors or Victorian era décor – this is a thoroughly modern homestead devoid of dank shadows and possessed cellars. The couple are likeable and real, and Katie Featherstone and Micah Sloat are naturalistic performers and have a certain casual chemistry. The production is genius in its simplicity. Watching stilted views of familiar rooms command the attention, dare the audience to examine every inch of the scene for any sign of unnatural movement – and even if nothing happens, there is growing tension merely in being so drawn into it.

Micah’s scepticism in the face of visiting psychic (Marc Fredrichs) marks him out quite early as fairly vexatious, especially when Katie seems to have been sensitive to paranormal activity from a young age. And yet every horror film needs a sceptic. I remember being very irritated by him when I first saw this, but watching again, I find he is a lot more understanding than I gave him credit for.

Unspectacular occurrences are a lot more effective because they are filmed as ‘live’, and we get the couple’s instant, undiluted reactions to them. The scene where Katie is simply standing beside the couple’s bed, staring at Micah’s sleeping form, doesn’t sound much on paper, but is incredibly sinister. Such moments, gradually built up throughout, are simple and unnerving – far more so in this film than in the numerous sequels and prequels, which desperately introduce new characters and build unreasonably on the ‘curse’ (which is not that interesting) to try to maintain the interest. To my mind, the only sequel that works is 2014’s ‘The Marked Ones’, because it is a fairly self-contained ghost story in its own right.

Yet ‘Paranormal Activity’ should have remained a very effective one-off, in my view. Its huge success persuaded Paramount Pictures, who had bought the film from its original independent distributors, to add a new ending, which would then lead into further numerous ways of wringing money from what had become a new franchise.

At the end of my first viewing of this, I had to turn all the lights on in every room, just to make sure there wasn’t a figure standing there. A sure sign the film has done its job …?

0 out of 0 members found this review helpful.

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