Blame It On The Devil

The TV Guide

It is with a very heavy heart that I must report … Paranormal Activity 2 is a terrible movie. Believe me, no one is more bummed about this fact than I am. I LOVED the original film so much, I was really hoping the sequel would be just as good. Actually, the sequel didn’t even have to be as good … I just wanted it to be good. Alas, it is not good … at all:


I shant spoil anything about the film to those of you who want to see this film so I’ll keep my very spoilery comments behind the cut. I will say here, tho, that I am very surprised by some of the good reviews that I read and mislead me to believe the film was good. There are many things about the film that make it almost unwatchable, paramount among them is bad acting. But the writing is also terrible and the premise, OMG, it’s so dumb I can’t even believe they decided to go with it. If you want to find out what I’m talking about, read on — after the jump …

Okay … so … it’s all the Devil’s fault. Yes, blame it on the Devil. In Paranormal Activity 2, we meet the sister of Katie (star of the first film) and find out that her family is being haunted by a “demon” because — get this — her family made a deal with the Devil for riches and now it’s time to pay with the firstborn son from the family line (that would be the little boy in PA2). As soon as this plot point was made clear to me, I totally checked out. Blaming the Devil … are you KIDDING ME?! LOL … I can’t even. PA2 is actually a prequel to the original film as most of the plot of PA2 takes place before PA. Absent the whole Devil thing, the acting and writing is just horrendous. The lead actor, the guy who plays the father, is SO unwatchable in this film … I couldn’t even stand it. The wife, Katie‘s sister, was ok … the daughter was the best actor of the bunch. There are a few scary, jump out of your seat moments but they do not make the movie worth seeing, IMHO. Paranormal Activity worked so well because it was new, fresh and made with heart. Paranormal 2 just suffers from pretty much everything that makes a bad movie bad. UGH and the ending … I can’t. It’s all just so disappointing … I was really looking forward to loving this movie.

Plans for tonight … David and I are planning to hang out with Tam, Ollie, Rob and Caleb who we haven’t seen in ages! We miss those guys so much, we’re way overdue for a hangout session. Happy Weekend, Happy Saturday!

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  1. Dan

    I think you’re overreacting because you had very high expectations, I think is was fine not as good as the first but scarier, it was entertaining and that was all I was looking for, I really liked it.

    • @Dan — Overreacting? No way. The acting is terrible as is the writing. As I said, the fact that PA2 isn’t as scary as the first isn’t what makes it suck … it’s the fact that it just really sucks that makes it suck. I’m curious, what did you find scarier about the second film? The “explosion” in the kitchen? That made me jump but overall there was nothing really scary this time around. And are you really telling me that you were impressed with the “deal with the Devil” explanation? LOL!

  2. Dan

    I thought it was fine***

  3. Anno

    Didn’t find the first one the least bit scary so won’t even bother with the second.

  4. Jill

    I normally agree with you Trent, but on this one I say BOO. It was an amazing movie. All the “devil” /”demon” stuff was talked about in the first one. It was a great movie and I’d say it was WAY better than the first. Both tie together perfectly. The acting isn’t great, but come on, the first one was made for $11k, what do you expect. It would have been terrible to rework it with “real” actors. This sequel matched perfectly to the first. Great movie. Go see it people!

  5. Josh

    Having saw the first one in a crowded theater, I couldn’t “enjoy” the first one or get scared. Now catching the 2nd @ a matinee w/ only 3 other couples present, my boyfriend & I were on the edge of our seats w/ goosebumps & sweaty pits. We thought it was the scariest film since The Descent so we loved it. Also I think there’s only so much u can do w/ the plot & seeing the girl get possessed in the first one, the Devil would be an obvious direction. I also really liked how they expanded & gave the story more history but can see why it would turn off others. I highly recommend it but not in a crouded theater.Exelsior!

  6. Dan

    I wasn’t impressed by that, but it’s not like you can expect a big revealing story either so I didn’t care about that aspect. I found scary a few scenes, especially the climax when lights went off. Overall my theater was happy with it, a lot of people were scared and many people said it was better than the first. I don’t think it suck completely but I didn’t have many expectations I just wanted to be entertained

  7. Ama

    It sucks that you were looking forward to this movie only to be disappointed.

    To be honest though, I didnt really find the first movie to be all that scary which was kind of a let down since I love paranormal movies. This one had more of my attention because of the baby and dog in the previews, thanks for reviewing, I will not be wasting money to go see this.

    Btw, did you ever watch the movie reincarnation? If you want a good paranormal movie I suggest that one and ‘one missed call’(the original not the remake)

  8. errin

    I actually liked it!

  9. Ashley

    I get what you are saying by your review when it comes to some of the scary parts, like the kitchen exploding. However, I don’t think this movie was meant to imitate true ghost things. It was meant to keep you on the edge of your seat and wait in anticipation for something to happen. As for the “Deal with the Devil,” it didn’t really cross my mind while watching the movie. Of course it was mentioned, but I didn’t think “Oh that’s dumb!” I do have to say that I didn’t like the ending either and I didn’t like the situation with the dog but that is because I’m a huge animal lover. Anyways, it wasn’t the best movie I’ve seen but it wasn’t terrible. I went into the movie expecting to be scared and I did get scared. Several times actually. Oh well, everyone has their own opinion and sorry it didn’t meet your expectations.

  10. Tim S.

    I’m also going to have to disagree. The two films tied in together great and this one was much scarier than the first one.

  11. Richard

    I really liked it. I didn’t find it as scary. Glad it wasn’t a typical sequel.

  12. selish

    I agree w/ the consensus here, it wasn’t nearly as bad you you’re making it out to seem…I went with a large group of friends, some film buffs like me, and we all took it for what it was worth…you don’t really watch films like these for the stellar plot (the first one wasn’t exactly groundbreaking…a demon that followed her around since childhood) or great acting. It kept you anxious and on the edge of your seat and in my opinion, anytime a kid/baby is in a horror movie, the scary level goes up a notch. I saw it in a packed theatre and everyone was laughing and talking excitedly when it ended.

    I mean, you thought a movie like Pirranah was great and to me, they are similar. They aren’t trying to be Oscar contenders, just FUN films. If you watch something like Paranormal Activity (one or two) and are critiquing the plot and acting, you’re missing the point:)

  13. eek!

    i loved it! and the whole devil thing was just what the daughter was looking up. i don’t think that was the point. it was scary!! hahaha or it’s the fact that i can’t handle scary movies.

  14. BriMarie

    I am going to have to go with Trent here… sooo bad. I wasn’t expecting anything amazing, but it was not worth my time.

  15. MzWoods

    Going to have to completely disagree…This wasn’t supposed to be an Oscar worthy movie so I wasn’t expecting the acting to be particularly gripping, however it was better than I could do and was pretty good for the vehicle it was in. I actually found the father quite hilarious and annoying…which he was supposed to be, the only one I could of done without was the stupid boyfriend that kept popping up.

    And no this movie wasn’t the scariest thing ever made, but it was suspenseful and it was creepy and it made me jump more than a few times while I was watching it. And the devil reference was already made several times in the first movie, anything dealing with demons and evil and the like is ALWAYS related to the devil so that didn’t really seem out of place to me. Overall I really enjoyed it and I would prob watch it again once it comes on the movie channels.

  16. SantaBarbaraBabe

    I agree with Ashley completely and I also agree with Selish point, “If you watch something like PA one or two and are critiquing the plot and acting, you’re missing the point.”

  17. Isabella

    I haven’t seen it, and we only just saw the first one…which I found completely unscary (and I’m such a wimp, lol) and totally overrated. Thanks for saving me $20, Trent!

  18. KristalT

    Oh come on..sorry i’m going to have to disagree with ya, Trent. PA2 as bad as you’re making it out to be. Given the movie, I didn’t go in expecting a DiNiro performance from any of the actors and the plot wasn’t too far off. Lets not forget that this is Paranormal Activity 2 not some movie that should be discussed on Inside Actor’s Studio. Go see it if you want to jump a few times!

  19. AJ

    SPOILERS..

    Aw TRent, I love ya but Sorry im with some of these other people, I honestly thought it was awesome. The acting to me didnt defer me, because i took it more like a family living in a house and being taped so how the spoke and what they did seemed like a normal real family. If i would have seen more recognizable actors in this, i wouldnt have been scared. The deal with the devil i thought was a good spin on the demon haunting katie and kristi. I’m glad to have an explanation, otherwise itd just be a mystery of why this one demon decides to follow these girls. and when the dad starts to prepare to transfer to the demon to Katie, me and my friends were actually like wow wtf thats messed up. I dunno i guess we just finally disagree on something Trent :/ lol

  20. dgrin

    sorry,If i thought the first one was pure crap I don’t even wanna know what I’d think of the second one,

  21. CHASE

    Trent, is it worth seeing if it’s free or does that not even matter? I might watch this tomorrow for free, but I don’t wanna waste my time. If you didn’t pay would you still has been peeved? JW.

  22. patches

    the first one sucked ass big time and it’s no surprise that the second one is a stinker too! L.M.A.O

  23. Amanda

    The film was terrible i seen it last night i havent seen the 1st one so nothing to compair it to. But it was compleatly rubbish i would describe it as looking for waldo but a ghost it took so long to get anywhere the best bits were probably the last 15-20mins at a push. i have seen more scary people first thing in the morning

  24. Ally

    i just got back from seeing it now… and i thought it was pretty good. the first one didn’t scare me as much because it was one camera and it was mostly just noise for the most part of the movie. this one, more cameras because of surveillance, more demon action like with the dog and pulling the chick down the stairs… scary ass shit there.

  25. FK

    I agree with you, Trent! I thought it was soooo boring, and the actor who played the dad was terrible. Also the attempt at justifying all the cameras was pretty lame. There were a few good startle moments, but overall it was pretty bad. I give it more a “meh” though than an all-out pan.

  26. by the way

    i disagree with you trent. the movie was awesome.

  27. Shawn

    Now I really want to see this just so I can participate in the debate–

  28. Margie

    It sucked. And then I got motion sickness.

  29. Shazzer

    I have to say I agree with you Trent. I was really disappointed. I mean it wasn’t like I HATED it, but it was kind of a waste of time and money (and movies in NYC are not cheap). I kept waiting and waiting (and waiting) for something to happen and it never did. When something actually did happen, it was mainly the stupid pots falling. I admit the cabinet scene made me jump, but it was the only cool thing that happened and it wasn’t even as well done as the stuff from the first movie. Also, when Kristi (who, btw, is the same actress that played Olivia on 24…which just made me check out to begin with. I liked it better when I didn’t know who the actors were) got dragged down the stairs, I jumped at first but then was laughing hysterically (I think I might have been the only person in the theater who found that absolutely hilarious). And, honestly, couldn’t they leave the dog out of it? So typical.

  30. Blah

    Listen, Trent. You have your details wrong.
    It’s not a deal the “the devil.” It’s a deal with “a demon.”
    That changes your criticism from the top down.
    If you’re going to go in disregarding the fact that demons don’t actually exist, you’ll also have to suspend your disbelief regarding things like mediums, seances, and anything else that might allow a desperate or greedy person to communicate with an evil entity from the beyond and come to some kind of accord with it. I’m not saying I loved the idea – I thought the initial idea of it just being a somehow obsessed demon was ambiguous enough to be super creepy – but your sudden critical eye lacks reason or depth. You’re not really known for having great taste or rational design behind your picks (SATC anything).
    As far as the acting goes – I’m at odds with you there as well. I thought the acting in the first one was awful – and the return or Katie and Micah reminded me of that because they really just aren’t great. But this time, with actual professional actors (you might remember the actress playing the mother as Anita from Six Feet Under if you’ve ever bothered to watch the best television series in history), the acting is not just less amateurish, but believable. The effect of pure terror and defiance in the face of an unknown threat was pretty strong. Furthermore, the fact that there were children involved totally heightened the suspense involved. Just seeing Hunter floating out of his crib terrified me because IT’S A FUCKING BABY!
    The fact is, the plot line isn’t stupid or uninteresting, it’s a trope. It’s traditional folk tale told through the most modern of mediums, and it’s truly novel for that. I could go on, but I suggest you open a truly critical eye to the films and television you view. I’ve had this problem with your “reviews,” for years – you go with your initial gut reaction to whatever you see, and it’s often quite shallow. Think a little more, or at least provide some more solid criticism, and perhaps it won’t come off as being so surface-y.

    • @Blah — I never said I didn’t believe in the supernatural, I said the plotline of this movie is dumb and I just didn’t like the movie … I also explained why. If you don’t agree with me, that is totally fine — a lot of people don’t agree with me. You seem really angry that I didn’t criticize the movie well enough but, well, sorry. It sucks. The end. When I review a movie, I merely explain what I liked or disliked about it … again, you don’t have to agree, it’s really OK.

  31. steph

    so what happens at the end? i won’t see it. the first one was too scary for me.

  32. Sarah

    I totally agree with you, Trent. If i had to see one more shot of that pool…

  33. Jenny

    Hey there! I didnt see this in the theater based on your recommendation, but I finally caught up with it last night via Netflix. I liked it. They didnt beat you over the head with the demon seed idea, so I mostly ignored that and took it for what it was- a creepy, jumpy, scary movie. I did like PA better because it had more scary seens and PA2 had the jump out of your seat scenes a little too far apart- although they were scary when they came. Liked it- not loved it, but def didnt hate it. Love you though! Happy Anniversary!! Safe trip to Berlin!

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