'Paranormal Activity 3' more of the same23/02/2012 - 16:22:10
Paranormal Activity 3
(Cert 15, 80 mins, Horror/Thriller)
On September 3, 1988, a little girl called Katie (Chloe Csengery) celebrates her birthday while her younger sister Kristi (Jessica Tyler Brown) keeps to herself, talking to her imaginary friend Toby.
Celebrations are captured by videographer Dennis (Christopher Nicholas Smith), the new boyfriend of the girls’ mother, Julie (Lauren Bittner). He becomes intrigued by strange sounds in the home and sets up two cameras, inadvertently capturing strange phenomena that threaten to tear the family apart.
Paranormal Activity 3 is an assured opening chapter in the horror mythology, sowing the seeds of terror in childhood that reap such bitter fruit for the two sisters in later years.
The third film starts gently and apart from a couple of cheap surprises, the knot of tension in our stomachs doesn’t begin to tighten until the halfway point.
Directors Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman, who made the acclaimed documentary Catfish about the perils of social networking, deliver several effective jolts.
They follow the template of earlier instalments, from doors that open or slam shut without warning to bedclothes that ripple under the control of invisible forces.
The directors’ most novel conceit is perching the camera atop a rotating electric fan, allowing the field of vision to turn slowly through 90 degrees, thereby giving us a panoramic view of the family’s living room and kitchen.
More than once, we glimpse impending doom on the edge of the screen just as the fan begins its rotation, and for the next 15 seconds our imaginations whir feverishly into overdrive as we contemplate what horrors are unfolding just off screen.
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