Married couple Ryan and Emily (Chris J. Murray and Brit Shaw) along with their young daughter Leila (Ivy George) and Ryan’s little brother Mike (Dan Gill) suddenly find a box of old VHS tapes and an old video camera that can allow them to see paranormal occurrences that the human eye can’t detect in their house. When Ryan and Mike decide to watch the tapes, they soon see that they film Katie and Kristi (Chloe Csengery and Jessica Tyler Brown), from previous Paranormal Activity films, being taught supernatural abilities by their grandmother (Hallie Foote). However in the video, Katie begins to notice the brother’s presence despite the video being filmed 20 years earlier. When Leila becomes a victim of supernatural attacks, Ryan and Emily must find a way to save their daughter.
I will say that I haven’t seen all of the Paranormal Activity films so my opinions will be based on this. I chose to see this film because I was curious as to how they would utilize 3D. I did not think it added anything to the experience other than in one scene. I think they used 3D as an excuse to show things with the paranormal camera in which the characters find near the beginning of the film. Other times some of the 3D moments just felt weird when contrasted with the film’s found footage format. The main problem that I’ve had with the few films of the series that I have seen was that they were too slow. In other words, not too much would happen onscreen until later on in the film so it was very easy to get bored or disinterested. I’m happy to say that this is not the case here as onscreen stuff happens rather quickly. Unfortunately based on the found footage format, the only things that seemed to happen were just weird sounds, stuff moving, and just different ghosts moving across and into the screen. This isn’t too much of an original way to scare people but I will admit to having jumped a few times and I don’t do that very often. Without giving too much away, the plot in this films makes absolutely no sense whatsoever. Sure there’s something wrong with the daughter but the reason why doesn’t make sense and just about everything else does not either. Watching this film which was quite short at around an hour and a half, I found myself often asking why or how. Maybe with more time, they could have explained a few more things. My understanding could have come from because I haven’t seen too many other films in the series or maybe it simply doesn’t make sense. This film was advertised as the end of the series and providing an explanation to the previous films of the series (I assume not the spinoffs) but I don’t think it did that. Again without giving anything away, the only reference to the previous films I recognized were the characters of Katie and Kristi from Paranormal Activity 3. I found the acting in this one to be consistent for the most part. It was all ok but not exceptional as most of the acting consisted of reacting to different things. I did not like the daughter, however, because her moodiness felt odd. As with most horror films, the plot consists of characters not knowing what was happening, then they figure it out, and then they try to stop it. I’m not exactly sure all three of those happened. I was not a big fan of the end either as it just left us with more questions than answers. Overall, based on the action, this film for me is the best Paranormal Activity I’ve seen (limited experience) and the best found footage movie I’ve seen.