Paranormal Activity sequel promises to out-boo its predecessor – will it succeed?
If you read my exhaustive review of Paranormal Activity, you know I was a big fan of (99% of) the film.
Paranormal Activity is the movie The Blair Witch Project wanted to be and Cloverfield didn’t even try to be. Discuss amongst yourselves the relative success or failure of The Last Broadcast, REC or its American remake Quarantine.
But we all also know that more often than not, sequels tend to disappoint (unless the audience’s requirements are low – Hello, Twilight).
The following is excerpted from my Paranormal Activity review… it’s a portion of the post that I find myself referring to and wanted the passage in its own post for reference.
THE LIMITATIONS OF AUTO-CHRONICLING
The “auto-chronicled narrative conceit” has its innate issues. It creates a single camera situation shooting in real time (Blair Witch circumvented this by having two cameras available, but didn’t really leverage it), with one character nearly always off screen, that does away with (or severely hampers) all the established film vocabulary tools… the wides, the two-shots, the over-the-shoulders, the singles, the cutaways, the inserts. All the film tricks that directors and editors use to subconsciously establish relationships between characters, to control tension and mood in dialogue exchanges, to communicate unspoken subtext, to control and structure our experience of the story into a narrative that works, are suddenly wildly restricted if not impossible to leverage.
Just got a tip from Paramount… If you read my review of Paranormal Activity and are still hoping to catch it, here’s the heads up that it is sneaking STARTING TONIGHT at MIDNIGHT at the: AMC Mercado 3111 Mission College…
Paranormal Activity horror film review
“Once every five years, a guy makes a movie for a nickel that can cross over to a broad audience,” says “Paranormal Activity” producer Jason Blum, who, as a senior executive at Miramax Films, had a producing credit on “The Reader” and acquired the supernatural thriller “The Others.” “And there are about 3,000 of these movies made every year, so this film is about one in 15,000.”
You’ve heard the buzz. Paranormal Activity, “the little indie horror film that could” about a couple who videotapes a demon haunting them in their home, made in a week for $11,000 by a guy with no filmmaking experience (Oren Peli, a video game programmer) gets seen at a horror fest (Screamfest), scares Spielberg so bad he won’t keep the DVD in his house (marketing hype, anyone?), and gets picked up by DreamWorks for the full court press. (LATimes story here)