Review | Paranormal Activity: Ghost Dimension
Not having to sit through another one of these films again gives me mixed emotions
The first film was a fresh of breath air, pretty much relaunching the found footage horror genre and spawning a generation of copy cat movies, much in the same way as The Blair Witch Project and The Last Broadcast had done almost 10 years prior, but with this came problems, it’s hard to follow on from a surprise hit and even more difficult when every writer and director from Hollywood to London is releasing found footage ghost stories, every unique idea is quickly swallowed up, but just like in the case of Blair Witch, there has to be a follow-up, one that is bigger and scarier than the first, expanding on the lore that was set up in the first film and going further.
With the first Paranormal Activity raking in nearly $200m at the box office, stemming from a reported budget of just $15.000, it was not a surprise that there would be sequels, I for one wanted to see them, as way back in the summer of 2007, I watched the original film in the cinema on four separate occasions, it’s the only time I have been more than twice to see a film and will most likely be in my top 10 movies for a long time to come, sadly however, the makers of the franchise have found it hard to keep the buzz and originality going throughout the five films that have followed.
That was probably the biggest failure of any of the movies that came out after the first one, too many people got involved with trying to recapture the magic and in the end they slowly over time alienated their fan base, with the second film being pretty good, the third and fourth being alright to pass the time but a little stale, the fifth being a parody of itself and the finally, which I watched tonight being a sad and depressing end to a succession of movies that really should have just been a trilogy.
Paranormal Activity: Ghost Dimension (6 for short) stars another cast of relative unknowns that one day start to discover strange things are happening when they start recording, sounds pretty familiar so far doesn’t it?, this time the family discover an old camcorder and a load of tapes in a box and proceed to watch them, soon discovering that something bad happened in the house before they moved in and now it’s targeting the families young daughter Leila *cough cough Sinister cough*
As a stand alone horror film, I would imagine that this would be a standard straight-to-DVD Halloween affair, but given that it is part of the PA series, it has been released in cinemas and unfortunately for the poor saps such as myself who paid to go see it, you get 90 odd minutes of bad decisions, obvious plot points, passable acting and an ending so predictable its almost as if the franchise has it’s on set of codes and convictions.
The film is pretty much a waste of time, it doesn’t bring the series to an end in a way you would have hoped and in the end you leave with more questions than answers, honestly unless you have nothing better to do or really love b-movies, I wouldn’t bother going to see PA6 as it’s just going to make you disappointed that bad movie after bad movie has killed off the Paranormal Activity brand so much that it is now little more than the National Lampoons of the horror genre, you would be better off watching one of the films that this one borrows from, namely Sinister and Insidious, both of which do it better and you actually care about the well-being of the people on-screen.