Sunday, October 24, 2010

Paranormal Activity 2- He said/she said

                                                                Directed by Tod Williams
Written by Michael Perry, Christopher Landon, and Tom Pabst
Starring: Katie Featherston, Micah Sloat, Brian Boland, Sprague Grayden, & Molly Ephraim

Jonesy-I saw the first one a year ago before it had its wide release, and I really enjoyed it. This one is equally as fun. It has some better jump scares in my opinion, and it’s equally as entertaining. And I would say “continuity-wise” one of the better horror movie sequels.

Javi- I didn’t get to see the first one, because just like with Avatar, I felt I needed to have seen it in theater in order to get the full experience. It’s not that the story or movie itself isn’t great, but the crowd experience is what makes it. I’ll probably go back and watch the first one now that I’ve seen this one. Overall I enjoyed it because of how it built the sense of atmosphere. You see the at the beginning of the movie why there are a million cameras all around the house, and they show all of these boring establishing shots of the house at night. But by the time shit gets crazy, then you see weird little differences and that’s what makes it creepy. It’s one of the better horror movies I’ve seen. If this movie is the exact same as the original then I see why the first got all the hype that it got. Because the horror movie genre is so boring, you always kind of know what to expect. Then you get some stand-outs such as Saw, Paranormal Activity, Hostel, Blair Witch, and The Ring. All movies that kind of did something different with the genre. It didn’t always adhere to all the typcial tropes of horror movies, don’t you think so?

Jonesy-I think of the pluses of Paranormal Activity 1 & 2 and one of the reasons why I liked Blair Witch is you never see the evilness that is terrorizing all of these people. It’s funny because in most horror movies you’re building up to what the monster can be and by the end the monster always looks ridiculous. My mind is a lot scarier than anything they can produce on screen. So I really dug that you never saw it, and your mind begins to play tricks on you while you watch the movie, and you see things that aren’t there.

Javi- And I don’t know if it was just me, but there was a scene where I saw a platter full of fruits and a knife that disappeared and then came back.

Jonesy-I also loved the story. It’s very similar to the first, but the way they explain and interweave both stories together made a nice cohesive arc.

Javi-Would you like to compare it to Breaking Bad with large story arc?

Jonesy- Yea, and they were not expecting the first one to get released, and it was a miracle it came to screens. So I’m sure there were no plans to make a sequel, and the fact that the writers not only made a second movie but a cohesive second movie is a tribute to them. There’re so many sequels (I’m looking at you Saw) that get so diluted you don’t know even know who’s who or what’s going on. With that said, Paranormal Activity 3 does not need to happen.

Javi- I thought it was cool. I knew that eventually shit would go crazy, but in a way it really felt slow, it really felt like 90 minutes. Not like some movies where you really feel that the time flies by, but this one you felt like it initially dragged. This wasn’t too bad because I feel it was necessary in order to build the atmosphere. I wish I’d seen the first one because of all the little nods to the original that I was later told about. They were written in okay, but they were really transparent about it. They made so sure that they fit, and they came close but didn’t hit that level of seamlessness that would have made you think they planned the story all along. It’s not even a big complaint, and in the end when the pay off happens, you grow to appreciate all of the little moments where they try to intertwine both movies.

Jonesy-Was the pay off worth it?

Javi- I think so, and I feel if it had ended any other way it would’ve been cheap. It brought a satisfying conclusion to the two-part story

Jonesy- The biggest downfall of the movie is the characters because they’re so generic.

Javi-You mean like the cheesy upper middle class suburban girl that’s all about the Misfits?

Jonesy- It was just very typical suburban family, but I did like the fact that there was the daughter and step mom, and they have a good relationship. It’s like all the girls know there’s something going on, and the guy is cynical “all women are crazy”, and then he realizes something is up. Even though they’re very typical, they’re very believable. I liked them. The relationship, acting and dialogue had a great documentary feel.

Javi-I do have a similar complaint like you where all of the characters are just tropes, but I don’t think that the story called for a character study, and there were no Tarantino-esque sequence of dialogue. If we’re going to look at it in the sense of the movie, then it’s appropriate. I will say the most believable relationship was the baby and the dog. You see the dog is with the baby and the way she tries to protect him. Apart from that, I liked when the sisters talked. It made me realize that even though I liked their relationship, they had some shady dialogue. “Oh no something happened in the past, but wait! We can’t tell the men, even though we just said something in front of them!” I liked the fact that they really looked like they were related.  Overall, I enjoyed it; I got one good jump scare. But everything else I was lukewarm on, and once again, I would tell you to pay for this movie to be scared. You’re paying to be tense for 90 minutes, and you’ll get your money’s worth. Apparently it’s very similar to the original, and even though I haven’t seen the original, and I enjoyed it quite a bit.

Jonesy- I liked the movie a lot, and it’s best to see it with a lot of friends in a packed theater. Also, go at night when you see this movie, and then you won‘t even feel comfortable in your own home.

1 comment:

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