Paranormal Activity 3 (2011) ***
D: Henry Joost, Ariel Schulman
C: Christopher Nicholas Smith, Lauren Bittner, Chloe Csengery, Jessica Tyler Brown, Dustin Ingram
P: Prequel tracing how the main characters from Paranormal Activity 1 & 2, became haunted by a malevolent force as children.
In the first two Paranormal Activity films we watched a set group of characters come to terms with the fact that they were being haunted my some kind of supernatural entity. They argued with one another about what to do about their predicament, but that was about all we were given as far as character development. After awhile, the constant arguing and whining became so annoying, that I couldn't wait for the films to be over with.
In Paranormal Activity 3, we witness a family having to deal with paranormal activity of some kind. Mom's boyfriend is a genuinely good guy who cares about the family. The kids make the stupid mistake of messing around with the Bloody Mary urban legend. Mom ...well the less said about her, the better. We actually care a little bit about these people since we can identify with them to a certain extent.
Over the course of the film, we all know that something bad is going to happen to these people, we're just not sure what will happen. Me personally, I was invested in the film's proceedings, since I was invested, more so, in the characters this time around. The film delivered the requisite jump scares that are expected of this franchise, but it also created a sense of dread and anticipation since I was emotionally invested in the film and its outcome. That sense of dread and anticipation is what makes Paranormal Activity 3 more effective then its predecessors. [R] 83 mins.
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