Paranormal Activity 3 (2011)
Plot: In a prequel to the events of the first two films, we find out that the demon terrorized Katie and Kristi not only as adults but as children too. Their “step-father” kept a video recording of all the events that took place in their “haunted” house, and it is presented here as a full length movie.
My Review: I haven’t been much of a fan of this series. For the most part there is not a lot of action/scare scenes but there is a lot of filler. And usually the action that these movies do have isn’t anything “big” or all that scary when you really think about it. This movie isn’t really any different, except of course there are little kids involved, which usually make for a freakier experience, at least for me. So based on that alone, I thought I would be scared while watching this one. But that wasn’t really the case.
The movie starts off with the two sisters (and the same actresses) from the previous films. Katie is storing some old stuff in her younger sisters basement. In the boxes are some old video tapes from the sisters childhood, which are of course are the videos all meshed together to make this prequel. Now, I don’t remember the other movies word for word, but I could have sworn Katie specifically mentions in the first movie that her house burned to the ground when she was a kid, and that she doesn’t have ANYTHING from her childhood. So, where did these tapes come from? There were a couple other unanswered questions from things I don’t recall being brought up in the previous films. Honestly, I feel the need to go back and rewatch them to see if I can get some answers.
The video tapes start off at a kids birthday party, we see the youngest sibling, Kristi, talking to “nothing” which we later find out is her “imaginary friend” Toby. We are introduced to Katie & Kristi’s mother and her boyfriend. How sad, both of their names escape me right now…anyhow the boyfriend wants to film them having sex one night, so while they are about to get it on, an earthquake happens, the camera falls on the ground and keeps recording as they run out of the room to check on the children. When the boyfriend goes to investigate what was on the tape, he sees something odd, which makes him decide to film around the house more. Not to mention there are tons of weird noises coming from the little girls bedroom. So he starts filming, and more and more little odd things happen, he tries to tell the girlfriend, but for whatever reasons she doesn’t believe him and won’t look at further proof caught on film…nor will she believe her children when THEY start telling her something is going on.
What I just find so odd about this whole series is, why does everyone in the family decide to film stuff? It just seems funny to me that the whole family would decide to film what was going on and not ever put the cameras down when potential dangerous stuff was going on. Like in the scene where the little girl decides she wants to play Bloody Mary in the bathroom mirror. So much “crazyness” happens while they are in the bathroom, and he almost acts like its no big deal “I’ll keep on filming!!” yet you can hear in his voice that he’s spooked. I think most people who hadn’t been around that stuff (which obviously this guy hasn’t) wouldn’t hold on for life to that camera. Then again, you don’t know till your in that situation, right? Also, the boyfriend obviously stops watching the footage after a certain point. He never makes reference to seeing anything after the ghost sheet scene.
What we end up with this movie is just a couple quick scares and a lot of filler, like the rest of the films in the series. I said to my husband while watching this one “I feel like I’m watching one of those ‘Pop out’ videos on YouTube just sitting here waiting for something to happen”. Especially when the boyfriend decided to hook up the camera so it would osculate on an fan base (which really creeped me out). Don’t get me wrong, there were a couple creepy scenes, like the sheet ghost scene (you’ll know it if you’ve seen it), and the scene where the wife walks in the kitchen and notices something missing. But overall its mainly anticipation of something happening that’s creepy.
As for the background story on what was going on and why. I don’t remember anything being said in the previous movies, but I’ve only seen the first one twice, and the second one once, back when it came out and I don’t retain stuff that well…anyhow, they go on to talk about this coven of old ladies who for some reason called on a demon and to get whatever they wanted and they needed the first born son…or something to that effect. Well, there was no son, just Katie and Kristi, so apparently the “demon” goes after Kristi’s son, and that’s when PA 2 takes place, then PA 1 takes place. Confusing….but really, I could care less. Why can’t it just be a haunted house, or haunted family movie. Why a friggin demon? Drives me insane I tell ya! I HATE Demon stuff because I don’t believe in them. So for the most part with these movies, until they start trying to stupidly explain what’s going on, I can enjoy them. Once the Mica look alike boyfriend starts to explain everything the movie went really downhill and I just wanted it over.
While I was writing this review, I looked at some posts on the IMDB forum for this movie, for some sort of explanation into the background story, or more info about it. And I heard a lot of people talking about scenes that were NOT in the movie I saw. I don’t know what the deal is, but they talked about 3-4 different scenes that were not in the version I saw. Like a scene with Kristi walking on a banister. Didn’t see it. Another scene with someone in a hot tub, there was no hot tub. So, I’m very confused by this. There are also scenes in the trailers that are not in the movie. The copy I rented was new yesterday to Redbox and it was the BluRay release…maybe it was different for theaters, or the rental version is different from the retail. I have no idea.
Gore/FX: Decent. No gore. This is a ghost movie that relies on small spooks here and there.
Sexual Content: None really. Almost a sex scene but no nudity, and its interrupted.
Acting: On par with the 2nd film. The little girls were very decent. I hope they didn’t get nightmares from filming this!
Overall: I was happy with the movie, a little scared (nothing major, I just kept waiting for the big reveal or shocker scene that never happened) till the symbol was found and they tried to explain everything. I liked the other movies better honestly. But really I wish they’d kept it to ghosts and not all in the same family. I might have to track down the copy people are talking about that has different scenes in it. Maybe that was more frightening.