Paranormal Activity 4: A Musings Movie Review

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Among the changing leaves, apple cider, pumpkin patches, cinnamon scented candles and increasingly chilly weather, there is Halloween. And with every halloween, there comes a scary movie to get you in the mood for curling up in a ball and hiding under the covers.

Thursday marked the premier of Paranormal Activity 4, and with all the previews and Twitter trends surrounding it, I thought there would be no better time to see it. I heard mixed opinions, and I have seen the first three.

I have been impressed with the movies in the past because they have been a pleasant (if you can use that word when describing a horror movie) break from your typical bloody, gory movies that make me want to pass out on the sticky floor of the theater rather than hide under the covers and sleep with the light on.

My first impression of the fourth in this series of flicks was that I wish the camera was held more steady. While the balance between a shaky camera in the hands of a moving character and a still computer camera on a shelf makes the movie realistic, it made be naseaous. I spent at least half of the movie with my head tilted to the side. I felt like I was in a car jolting back and forth with a weak stomach.

Despite the tossing around of my lunch, the movie did not fail in capturing my interest and attention. There was no scene that I was bored. It progressed in a sensible way and the plot was easy to follow without important points being shoved in your face obviously. Connections to the prior Paranormal movies were also presented in a way that was easy to understand but also invited viewers to speculate about the situation and make predictions about the storyline.

My only other complaint about Paranormal Activity 4 is that I do not like creepy kids. They’re annoying, and they have been done before. They don’t scare me, they just irritate me. This movie has it’s share of creepy kids, but it was the quiet nights filled with random noises and events that made me jump.

That said, I enjoyed this movie just about as much as the other three. It wasn’t better, and it wasn’t worse. It is worth seeing, but be prepared to make the decision based on your own taste in movies if you want to pay a cinema price, or Netflix it later.

I give it 3 out of 5 nasty little demons.


  1. It might not have been the scariest thing ever, but I do kinda enjoy how they have to keep making up new reasons for why they videotape everything. Sure, it gets stretched to past the point of suspension of disbelief eventually, but I appreciated their ideas.

    Not “groundbreaking”, but at least innovative enough to advance their formula instead of being overly stagnant.

  2. Good review. While the first two follow-ups at least attempted to give us something new and create a mythology, part four is bereft of ideas and rehashes moments from both its precursors and classics of the horror genre. I didn’t hate it, but it definitely didn’t take me by storm.

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