For anyone who thought the Paranormal Activity franchise was dead….. think again.
Jesse (Jacobs) and Hector (Diaz) are best friends who have just turned 18 and graduated from high school. They are typical teenagers who film everything and cannot help but get themselves involved when some strange and very weird things happen in the apartment downstairs. They start by spying on the woman downstairs…. who their deeply religious Mexican community think is a bruja (witch) …. and soon after, Jesse starts to change. He becomes possessed. By what is still unclear.
An inexplicable bite mark appears on his arm and he develops seemingly superhuman powers. It seemed very similar to The Chronicle…..which I reviewed here almost 2 years ago …… in the ways the boys reacted. Modern teens are not afraid of the paranormal, they embrace it…..think it’s cool. The boys then post the video online and were more than annoyed at the negative and non believing replies they received. When a game suddenly becomes a modern-day Ouija board, they don’t even question why.
As Hector and Marisol (Walsh) try to save Jesse from himself, Jesse becomes more and more violent and it all becomes….. well it gets all Paranormal Activity. Even Jesse’s grandmother (Renee Victor) tries to cast some cleansing religious spells on him but to no avail.
Now anyone who is familiar with the franchise knows what I mean by getting all Paranormal Activity on us. That not quite music but more of a hum starts and you know something is going to happen. Then it all starts to tie in with the other stories in the franchise.
This movie does not have the scares the first 3 had …….. I think it’s better if we all try to forget that 4 was even made, dont you agree?? ….. but what it lacks in scare it makes up for with a clever script that weaves in elements of the other 4 movies yet still manages to be its own movie. You dont need to be familiar with the other movies to enjoy this one but it will help….especially as the movie lurches towards its finale.
Is this the best horror ever made? No way! Is it the best in the franchise…..not at all ( I still refuse to watch the first one ever, ever again). But it is what it is. It’s a movie with a $5 million budget that grossed $18 million on its opening weekend. So this little franchise has legs after all. Nice try #4.
The Marked Ones is more of a thriller. The friends try to piece together the mystery before Jesse is lost to them forever. It is not quite as serious as the others…. the kids initially think its all great fun….. then it gets ugly and violent.
If you are a fan of the franchise, don’t miss this one. You will regret it. This time the action is brought to you by hand-held camera, not security cameras as in the past. For everyone else, this is a decent little horror flick that is definitely worth the price of a movie ticket.
Love Flick xx
Director : Christopher Landon
Starring : Andrew Jacobs, Jorge Diaz, Gabrielle Walsh, Renee Victor, Noemi Gonzalez, Gloria Sandoval
Running Time : 84 minutes
Release Date : 23 January, 2014