By Javier Cabrera / Editor-in-Chief
With the suspense building up through every scene, “Paranormal Activity 4” comes up short of producing a perfect horror movie.
As the fourth movie of the “Paranormal Activity” franchise, “Paranormal Activity 4” continues with the story of one family’s relationship with a demon named Toby.
Since its debut five years ago, the “Paranormal Activity” franchise has become a phenomenon to those curious about the paranormal. At the same time, it has continually swept fear into many moviegoers.
For the few diehard fans of this franchise, such as myself, we were all taken away from the first movie as many of us believed what was presented in “Paranormal Activity” was real, because the movie was shot in a way where it seemed original with homemade videos.
In a quick summary of the first two movies, Katie Featherston plays Katie, and is the first character introduced in “Paranormal Activity.”
She reveals her secrets of being haunted to her boyfriend Micah, played by Micah Sloat, after the two moved in together.
That movie ends with Katie disappearing and leaving Micah dead.
“Paranormal Activity 2” parallels along the same time period of the first one and it is about Katie’s sister, Kristi Rey, played by Sprague Grayden, and her family experiencing paranormal activity after her son, Hunter, is born and brought home.
The second movie ends with Katie killing Rey and her husband then leaving with Hunter.
“Paranormal Activity 3” is about rewinding the story back to when Katie and her sister were little and identifying all the paranormal activity that the two sisters experienced as kids.
Through the first three movies, fans found out that Katie’s great grandmother struck a deal with the devil to be rich in exchange for giving him the family’s firstborn male.
That firstborn male happened to be Hunter and fans kept asking what happened to him and Katie.
Fast forwarding to “Paranormal Activity 4,” the question is somewhat answered but there are still questions to be answered.
In the fourth movie, we find out where the two disappeared to but it ends with where they go from here; the main point in the fourth movie is Katie started preparing Hunter to be offered or given to the demon.
Heading into this movie, I, like many others, was expecting the film to be plain and predictable since the first three movies were alike and many fans already knew the regular routine of what is going to go down in every scene.
But surprisingly “Paranormal Activity 4” brought a whole new look to the series. The storywriters and directors really did their homework and invested a lot of time figuring out new ways to keep the fear in people’s minds.
In one scene the camera is on night vision and green dots light up a dark living room, and in a close view, fans can see a silhouette of a child.
In the paranormal field, the ultimate finding for ghost hunters is the Holy Grail, which is a full body apparition. In this scene alone, there is a full body apparition detected and it brings the chills down your spine as you see it roaming around.
Many would argue the film has bad acting and there are parts that show that, but the cast for “Paranormal Activity 4” is solid.
Alex, played by Kathryn Newton, is the main one in this movie because she is the one recording all the strange activity, and she is the one getting all the action thrown to her.
She brought a new breathe of fresh air to the franchise since she was able to sell the idea of the homemade video clips being realistic.
In one scene, fans can start feel the anxiety kicking in and heartbeats increasing as Alex braves herself to head into a dark, creepy house to look for her little stepbrother brother, Hunter.
And for an afterthought, one question fans have after this fourth movie, is how did Hunter get adopted into this family when Katie supposedly kidnapped him?
My theory is that family found Hunter and he was never reported by Alex’s parents.
“Paranormal Activity 2” and “Paranormal Activity 3” were OK, but “Paranormal Activity 4” brought that dose of spook back to the franchise just like “Paranormal Activity.”
In overall, “Paranormal Activity 4” is 85 percent impressive that I give it a four-out-of-five, because it might be good enough to have its fans leaving the movie theater whispering “Mama.”